Three strategically placed vending machines have gone live this morning in Cookstown for young men in need of an emergency check shirt before heading to one of the dances in the town whenever they reopen.
Scientists have worked out that over five months of unplanned courtships between mostly mid to east Tyrone men and women in the 18-25 age group have been lost due to the pandemic lock-down, resulting in the probable loss of over 200 future marriages.
The check shirt vending machines offer a range of colours from red checked, blue checked and a third multi-coloured check shirt, all costing £10 un-ironed or £15 ironed.
Cookstown hotelier Leon Kennedy maintains this has been a genius idea:
“The amount of times I was caught out in the 80s wearing a plain t-shirt thinking I wasn’t going to pull and then tacked a blade from Galbally but lost her due to a lack of checked shirt. This is a game-changer for lads out of practice in recent months.”
Meanwhile GAA supporters have been asked not to turn up to matches this weekend due to Covid19 health and safety concerns but have also been told that if they do turn up anyway they will still have to pay in.
A Cookstown boiler servicer has been refused a refund after purchasing over 200 items at a charity auction in Cookstown last weekend.
Patsy Sheehey, who had been at a 40th birthday party until 6am that morning, admitted that although he may have still been intoxicated the morning of the auction, it was the tremors that resulted in him bidding for over 200 items consecutively.
Sheehey returned home with a car full of useless household goods including a freshwater pearl, five broken grandfather clocks, an octopus mermaid ornament, a lobster in tangled lights ornament, a squirrel in underpants ornament, a toilet plunger ornament, a pirate girl pink flamingo ornament and a replica of Steven Hawking’s chair.
“It’s a disaster. I only went to see what an auction was like. I didn’t expect to spend £50’000 and come home with three cracked Belleek Crystal Bells amongst other stuff. It was just the jitters after the drinking session that had me bidding and I didn’t even know it.”
The charity has requested that Sheehey pays up in full by the end of the month, with the money going towards a much needed shelter for lonely and depressed donkeys in the greater East Tyrone area.
Meanwhile, a snowman was built on Tuesday morning at 5am outside Lissan.
A Cookstown joiner admitted he just forgot himself after he got the lining kicked out of him beside the bread section in the Spar in Cookstown for whistling the Wham! classic ‘Last Christmas’ despite it being early November.
Patsy Sheehy, a 45 year old father of 3 and a turtle, maintains he isn’t really a Christmas person and didn’t know why the song came into his head, possibly because he heard another Wham! number on U105 earlier that day.
“All I can remember is whistling and then I was being hit viciously around the bake with a baguette. And it wasn’t a soft freshly baked one. It was one of them hard ones.”
Sheehy admitted he may have been whistling Last Christmas as it was ‘a great ditty’ and he liked George Michael’s vocal range.
A PSNI official confirmed they had arrested a 92-year-old woman from the town who had a previous conviction for burning a Christmas tree which was unveiled in the town in November 1984.
In other news, the road between Donaghmore and Cookstown has been closed due to a loose cat which has been terrorising motorists.
PSNI officials have confirmed that over 400 complaints have already been made about teachers openly goading and sniggering at parents wrestling with their own children in shops and parks since yesterday morning.
With all schools on their summer breaks, parents have been faced with the trauma of over seven weeks of entertaining their own offspring in trying, warm conditions. Simultaneously, most teachers have embarked on a lengthy period of sleeping in, drinking from midday and general slouchiness whilst poking fun at their students’ parents.
Maisie McGrath, a mother of five aged 5-16, revealed she almost came to blows with her son’s P5 teacher near the pea section at Lidl in Cookstown yesterday:
“The bitch was smirking away whilst my lad was tugging at my tabard looking for the ice cream section. I know exactly what she was thinking. I also think she was pissed and it was only 1pm.”
Hundreds of other complaints were made regarding laughing and sniggering at cinemas as teachers sat in the back rows poking fun at parents balancing food and snattery crying children at the same time.
Police have sent a letter to all teachers warning them to show some remorse in these early days or teacher internment will be considered until the end of July.
It has emerged that seven schools in the county are currently forcing detained students to watch ‘There’s No Place Like Tyrone’ on loop as an effective deterrent against bad behaviour in the classroom, for anything up to two hours depending on the severity of the offence.
Parents have complained of their children being scarred for life or in floods of tears on collection, after having to sit through at least one episode of the current new series as punishment.
However, many schools have reported a marked improvement in behaviour for the first time since corporal punishment was banned in all educational institutions in the late 80s.
Cookstown parent Banty Sheehy confirmed that he’s all on for the new initiative, claiming that his son’s behaviour has now improved at home as well:
“I’ve threatened him as well with watching it at home and locking the living room door. This TV show could really change young people’s mind-sets and tendency to do bad stuff. 20 minutes of the programme and my young lad is begging for forgiveness.”
The Education Authority maintain that they will monitor the situation but added that hordes of screaming children trying to escape through the windows of detention rooms is not a good look for prospective parents and pupils.
Hilary McGettigan, Principal of Gortin Academy, explained that they will only use the ‘There’s No Place Like Tyrone’ treatment for serious misdemeanours such as nailing rotting fish to the underneath of the teacher’s desk or calling someone a ‘bollocks’,
A famous Coalisland chip shop has admitted to stockpiling ‘maybe a million’ cowboy suppers as fears about a no deal Brexit continues to haunt businesses up and down the county.
The Cowboy Supper, consisting of 2 sausages, chips and a slap of beans, has been the staple diet of most East Tyronians since the early 1900s and is often cited as a reason why county managers tend to pick lads from the west. Coalisland firm Landi’s have reportedly hired a storage unit in Dungannon and have already filled it with frozen versions of the meal.
A Coalisland local and avid Cowboy Supper consumer, Paddy Quinn, added:
“This a great piece of news to be fair. I couldn’t care about diesel or Disprins. If we can throw a Cowboy Supper into us once a day who gives a damn about hard borders and stuff. Stick on a Dolly Parton record and all is well.”
Other chip shops are said to be looking into commencing a similar operation, with an outlet in Cookstown already revealing they have stored over 300 pastie baps for Belfast ones who may be visiting their famous market on a Saturday.
A Cookstown welder has decided to run the gauntlet one more time after buying his wife her entire Christmas gift in the local Spar despite being warned not to by friends and family.
Phillipe Mulligan, who was banished to his brother’s house at 10am last Christmas after his wife unwrapped three packets of Spar paracetemol tablets and a box of Lemsips, was witnessed browsing the razor and shaving cream section intently this morning before settling for a Gillette Fusion Facial Combo and a roll of wrapping paper.
Despite pleads from the cashier, who happened to be a third cousin of Mrs Mulligan, Phillipe completed the transaction, muttering something about hoping she ‘takes the positives out of it’.
Mrs Mulligan’s mother added:
“That’ll be four years running he has just dandered to the Spar. The first time he bought a three-pack of cooked ham and pink Lucozade. The man’s head isn’t right.”
Meanwhile, three men shopping in Woolworths in Dungannon were rescued by the Fire Brigade after getting stuck in the women’s Aran jumper aisle. Although two recovered in the back of the ambulance, a Castlecaulfield man was still on a drip this evening.
Moortown Woman To Sue Cookstown Disco For Not Getting A Man Between 1990 and 1994 Due To Smoke Machine.
A Moortown spinster maintains she has a solid case to take against Clubland in Cookstown after claiming that the smoke machine they used during the slow dances made it impossible for potential suitors to see her all done up.
Hillary McClintock (53) is hoping to claim up to £10’000 in damages after she failed to get one curt over a four-year period despite attending the disco for over 200 consecutive weeks and twice one week over Christmas. Her barrister maintains that he has evidence that the smoke machine made it much harder for Hillary to show off her rugged loughshore looks, even during Bryan Adams slow songs.
“My client even wore figure-hugging dungarees which we all know are irresistible to lads from Clonoe and Brackaville. It doesn’t make any sense. My sister who had two eyes heading in different directions met her future husband during a Wet Wet Wet song even with the smoke coming down. Not sure if I’ve just ruined my own argument there.”
McClintock has yet to say how the £10’000 was arrived at but is confident she will at least get a voucher of some sort, even though the Pink Pussycat nightclub doesn’t exist any more.
Meanwhile, scientists in Queen’s University in Belfast have revealed that the most likely song to get a partner at a Cookstown disco during the 1990s was Cotton Eye Joe.
Calls for stiffer GCSEs have more than trebled today after the first cohort of students studying ‘Acting The Lig’ all passed with A* grades.
The new Acting The Lig course, which saw two practical exams where pupils had to stand in the corner of the The Square in Stewartstown lighting illegal French crackers and giving passers-by the fingers whilst sipping from small bottles of Buckfast, will offer students the chance now to head off to other towns now to gaunch about in style.
Despite their success, the general public have asked questions as to the appropriate difficulty of such courses. Padraig Logan, who passed an O Level in 1977 in ‘Cement Mixing’ maintains today’s generation aren’t really tested:
“Acting the lig in the 1970s was much more difficult back then. We were goading men with rifles and tacklin women from Lissan. These days a lig just gives the middle finger to oul women driving cars. Where’s the danger in that?”
Examination board CCEA have defended the course, adding that the question papers were set by some of the biggest ligs in the country, including several MLAs. One such question asked pupils ‘What is the best way to greet someone from Cookstown who may have mistakenly strayed from their ghetto?’ The two points were award if a candidate referred to ‘threatening to kick their bollocks in’.
A leaked itinerary of homecoming parades if England win the World Cup has revealed that one of their first stops on the way home from Russia will be the Main Street in Cookstown.
25 years after Derry pulled the same stunt without warning after winning the All-Ireland, dentists are worried about a repeat of 1993 after they were pushed to breaking point with so many gritted teeth injuries.
Cookstown Head of Festivities Joshua Sheehy admitted they weren’t surprised at the news:
“England would be well aware of what Derry did in 1993 in Cookstown and how it mentally affected Tyronies for decades. Squints, broken teeth and a rise in cursing have been the classic side-effects to this day from seeing Brolly and Tohill blow kisses to Cookstown ones. For England to parade up the street will finish many off for good.”
The document also revealed that, if successful, the England bus will stop off at the Maxol station beside the Cohannon Inn after the Cookstown parade and will probably order cowboy suppers from PG Chips although Harry Kane just wants a sausage supper as the beans gives him wind.
Meanwhile, Omagh officials are considering erecting a big screen at Healy Park if the visit of Dublin coincides with the World Cup final if England make it. The screen will not show the game but simply be used to warn spectators not to turn on the radio or TV if Southgate’s men win, for three months.
Thousands of Tyrone boat-owners were said to be ‘seething’ today after it emerged yesterday that they are not allowed to wash their boats as one of the conditions of the hosepipe ban.
Over 80% of households in Tyrone are said to own a boat due to their proximity to Lough Neagh and Fermanagh waterways as well as multiple appearances on the 1980s gameshow ‘Bullseye’, winning speedboats in the process.
Several arrests were made in Ardboe this morning after dozens of families attempted to get around the ban by using buckets instead of hoses.
Jamesy Forbes, who owns three boats (one for legal activities, one for illegal and the other one for romantic excursions won on Bullseye in 1988), fumed:
“This is some form of dictatorship. There’s no better feeling than washing your boat after Mass on a Sunday and getting the whole family involved. If you flew a drone over East Tyrone on a Sunday around 12pm you’d see 1000s out polishing their boats in public. Now that has been taken away. It’s like losing a leg.”
The hosepipe ban comes as the current spell of hot weather is set to continue for the foreseeable future. Authorities have warned boat owners that they’ll be watching for people washing their boats on the lough using lough water as that is prohibited too.
Meanwhile a man was beaten in a shop in Cookstown for saying ‘God it’s warm’ for the 12th day in a row.
DUP Man Suspended After Mobile Footage Shows Him Tapping His Foot To Ireland’s Eurovision Entry, On A Sunday
A junior DUP party member from Cookstown, who hasn’t been at his desk for over a week, has finally revealed that he has been disciplined after mobile phone footage showed him tapping his foot and smirking to Ireland’s Eurovision song which celebrated same-sex relationships, on a Sunday.
Wilbert McFettridge (22) claims he hasn’t been told which aspect of his party’s principles he had violated but has vowed to be a better DUP man in the future:
“I haven’t been informed yet if it was the fact that I was toe-tapping to an Irish entry, or that the song was about a love story between two men or finally if it was the fact that I did all this on a Sunday that I have been suspended for. I didn’t know I was smirking but I was probably thinking of a good joke or something.”
McFetridge wanted to confirm to his supporters and voters that he has spent the last week listening to the Moygashel Loyalist Flute Band Greatest Hits CD non-stop in his car even since his lapse and will be more aware of his musical preferences in future:
“To be honest I wasn’t aware of anyone filming me. I just happened to be listening to it whilst waiting in traffic to get into the Cookstown Fr Rock’s game against Greencastle. Damn it, I mean Sunday Service,”
The DUP now are currently monitoring CCTV footage of cars arriving at the Cookstown GAA ground that Sunday. If spotted, McFetridge could be up on all four accounts of breaching party ethos.
Despite rumours to the contrary, a pair of socks given as a Christmas present to a father of four just outside Omagh are still in operation despite approaching the end of January.
Retailers in the county confirmed that over 6900 pairs of socks were bought in the county in the run up to the festive period. It was thought that only 3450 single socks remained after the 25th of January until a man was spotted, and eventually approached, in the Spar in Tattyreagh wearing a matching pair of Game of Thrones socks.
John McCabe, who was out buying wheaten bread and a packet of Fruit Pastilles, admitted:
“It’s a pure fluke. I thought one of them was an A-Team one I’ve had since 1986 but it does now appear that I have two of the same kind. Who’d have thought that? I’m urging other men not to give up hope.”
Meanwhile, a survey has revealed that the long month after Christmas has left many families eating things at the back of their cupboards despite warning from health officials. A mother in Cookstown this morning admitted to friends in the hairdressers that she fed the whole family pickled cockles from a small jar for dinner all week.
In what is now being labeled as a ‘lone wolf initiative’, Stewartstown have already begun the process of leaving Europe, inspired by the recent Catalonian vote as well as all the talk about Brexit, according to a shop-owner in the town.
A series of meetings for ‘Stexit’ have already been scheduled for next week, including what to call the new independent state, currency and passport issues.
Randy Gillis, who has run the only sweet shop in the town since 1922, admitted he’s excited about the venture:
“We have always felt different to everyone else. We’d see the Tullyhogue and Cookstown ones driving through our town and you’d get an urge to fire stones at them because of their strange accent and eyes. Sometimes we have showered them with rocks. It’s a weird feeling. This is exciting news.”
Early frontrunners for the new name includes The Independent Republic of Tintown and Stewstin.
Coagh have reacted to the news by banning all sellers of tickets for Stewartstown GAA or the newly formed Stewartstown Triangle Band, the first triangle band in Europe.
Stexit is being planned for the day after Hallowe’en.
After receiving advice on how to deal with the decimation of her tomatoes this summer, a Cookstown woman has stumbled upon the unlikely source of her problem by setting up cider traps at night.
Convinced that slugs and snails were devouring her legendary vegetables, a local gardening expert advised Mary McNally to trap the shelled gastropods by using small doses of cider inside bottle tops. It was only when she heard a rustling outside one night that she caught the culprit:
“It was the husband all along. He’d put the gardener up to saying to me about the cider so he could go out and get sloshed in the garden whilst I slept. I looked out one night and there he was, off his head drinking the cider from the bottle tops, singing rebel songs, and, to top it all off, eating the snails himself as well as the tomatoes.”
John McNally admitted to the cider/snail/tomato consumption when caught red-handed and has since added SatNav to his phone so that his wife knows where he is at any given time of the night.
NcNally also denies any wrongdoing in the poor carrot crop this year in his garden despite his wife, suspiciously now, again being told by the same expert gardener to leave beer and dirty magazines beside the carrots to ward off bats and badgers.
Supermarkets and off-licenses across the county have confirmed a sharp spike in wine purchased by parents between the ages of 25 and 50 over the weekend.
Consumer experts immediately explained the phenomenon as nothing unusual, linking the annual trend at this time of the year to the start of school holidays, adding that vineyards in France and Chile intentionally increase their production rate for women at this time of the year from Tyrone, as well as in Derry, Fermanagh and Armagh. Additionally, a group of stay-at-home-fathers have formed a counselling group in Cookstown to counter the summer trauma.
One woman, who wished to remain anonymous, told us as she exited Tesco in Dungannon with over 30 bottles of savignon blanc:
“It’s completely medicinal. There’s only so many times you can tell them to stick on Frozen before you go a bit mad, like. A glass at 12pm eases the strain somewhat. By 4pm they can draw all over the walls for all I care or even notice.”
Businesses have also started to notice a rise in productivity as parents appear to be prepared to do any amount of over time, even free of charge. Many workers have also decided to forego their own transport and have taken to walking home from work, sometimes not returning until late evening after walking up to 15 miles.
Coalisland businessman Leo Keown added:
“It’s a pure lethal time of the year. Parents of young children are mad for the overtime and I’m paying them buck all. And they’re at the gates at 6am too. Long live the summer holidays.”
Meanwhile, a group of men in Brocagh have been arrested after trying to hack into the local primary school’s website and changing the calendar dates, creating a 31st July ‘Back to School’ deadline. One of the arrested claimed he was delighted to be caught and ‘hopefully jailed for a few weeks’.
Despite being cheered on by the entire county during a magnificent run to the All Ireland Final, the threat to the county players is now placed at ‘critical’ as they prepare to head back to their clubs for league football.
As the multi-award winning squad from the 00s can testify, there appears to be a strong correlation between playing well for the county and getting the lining kicked out of you in club games, by the same boys who clapped and roared you on a week earlier.
An All-Star winning forward who wishes to remain anonymous, said from his Cookstown home:
“The feeling of elation when you scored a clinker in Croke Park would soon turn to dread when it dawned on you that some failed corner back from Ardboe is probably going to break you in two at the weekend for scoring it. I remember I nailed one such goal against Dublin, involving dummies, and spotted a boy from Kildress cheering and giving me the thumbs up in the Canal End. Then, in a millisecond, he did the throat-slicing movement and gave me the fingers.”
With Tyrone having so many 5-star performers throughout the year, the threat level has been raised from the normal ‘high’ to ‘critical’ with referees made aware of the need to be extra-vigilant over the next few weeks.
A Trillick sharpshooter who didn’t even get on for most of the year told us he’s ‘dunging the togs’ in anticipation of taking on Urney in a week’s time. Urney, who are famed for their particular distaste of Donegal, have promised to tone down the comeuppance for Tyrone heroes playing for Trillick, but refused to make promises.
As Tyrone GAA great Joe McMahon brought down the curtain on his 13-year county career, his beard delivered an unexpected twist with the news that it has declared to play on for another few years, with or without its owner.
McMahon’s beard, who came to prominence during the successful 2008 campaign, is said to be considering its options and may move onto someone like Mark Bradley or Darren McCurry. In a scathing press release, it confirmed that its relationship with McMahon had been strained for years:
“I’m glad he has called it a day. Sure what’s the point of wintering well only to be put through a slogging session every spring. And anyway, I wouldn’t mind teaming up with someone who knows where the posts are. Me and Mark Bradley would be deadly, like something from Game of Thrones.”
The beard appears to be hurting over the lack of consultation in McMahon’s decision to retire, citing the fact that his brother Justin used to treat his beard to spa weekends and long combing sessions.
“All I get is leftover crisps and the odd bit of drink. I made that man. No one had heard of Joe McMahon til that day we beat the Dubs in the rain in ’08 and he appeared in the papers the next day with me dazzling on his chops. And this is what I get.”
Owen Mulligan’s beard has offered counseling to McMahon’s beard after Mulligan’s beard went off the rails post-retirement and was jailed due to an altercation in a casino in Las Vegas in 2014.
A Cookstown entrepreneur who was caught in Malaga Airport with a large bag of home-grown potatoes with sunglasses on them in his suitcase is facing up to three years in prison after breaking the Marketing of Potatoes Act (1964) and assaulting a Spanish officer.
The Act, which states that a constable may seize and may detain in custody any potatoes which are being or which are suspected by such an officer or constable of being, sent out of Northern Ireland, hasn’t been used since the great Cappagh Spud Scandal in 1966.
Seamus Sheehey, who admitted to planning to set up a stall on a beach in the south of Spain to sell his 300 potatoes, maintains the heavy-handedness of the Spanish police led him to head-butting one of them and running off, shouting ‘leave my spuds alone yiz bastids’, according to startled onlookers.
“How was I to know about that law? I just remembered how last year I was lying on a beach in Benalmadena and thinking ‘jaysus I’ve love a good spud now’ and the sweat beating off us. I’m sure others felt the same. But there was no need for the Spanish police to start rummaging through my suitcase and throwing my potatoes all over the place, wrecking their sunglasses disguise. It was intimidation.”
Sheehey was already facing community service as well as a ban on being anywhere near a potato field before he headbutted the Spanish officer.
The case brought back memories of the Cappagh Spud Scandal when three Cappagh men were caught at Dun Laoghaire with over 20 tonnes of Tyrone potatoes painted in different colours to resemble large marbles, bound for England.
Following a surge in the popularity of cow-dung art in mid-Ulster, the Department of Arts and Entertainment has given the go-ahead for a state of the art gallery beside the Garvaghey pitches to showcase the best of what Tyrone have to offer in this discipline.
Cow-dung art, also known as An Pictiur Shoite in Irish, dates back to the time of St Patrick when a group of poor women, in an area of what is now known as Cookstown, offered St Patrick some dung-art in appreciation for the great Masses he said when passing through.
In recent weeks, cow-dung art has experienced something of a resurgence in the county after a 62-year-old posted an Instagram picture he created of his wife in a bikini using only the fresh dung of his own cattle.
Gerry McGarrity, who boasts over 500 drawings he created using only local produce and his fingers, said the centre could draw millions of tourists to Tyrone in the same way as the Louvre in Paris:
“There’s a big market for cow-dung art across the globe. It is a form of 3D art as you can smell the pictures as well as look at them. In my opinion it’s £4.5m of tax-payers money well spent. Think of the chip van or potato stall potential outside the building too, bringing more money to the local community.”
Early brochures suggest that the picture of McGarrity’s wife in the bikini will be the ‘Mona Lisa’ flagship display for the cow-dung arts centre and will be called ‘McGarrity’s Wife In A Bikini’.