Today was another momentus day in the career of Coalisland’s snooker guru Dennis Taylor and the town itself as the 3-millionth person claimed to be in Coalisland the day he returned as World Champion in 1985.
Taylor, who overcame being from Tyrone and wearing glasses made by a drunk optician in a shed near Newtownkelly in the 60s, defeated Steve Davis 18-17 in the 1985 final which was finally decided on the final black.
Despite a population of 5000, by the year 2000 it was estimated that over 2 million had claimed to be in Coalisland that glorious day, finally hitting the three million mark yesterday when a 28-year-old from Brackaville said she was there too.
Jacinta Groves, who works in a hairdressers in the town, claims it was a great day:
“Although it was 32 years ago, and I’ve yet to turn 30, I definitely remember being there and seeing Taylor arriving on the back of an enormous cement lorry accompanied by Philomena Begley singing ‘He’s Got The Whole World In His Hands’. And then Taylor headed into Sullivan’s and bought about 2 millions bags of crisps and fired them out from the lorry using his snooker cue. It brings a tear to my eye even yet.”
Patsy Quinn (79), who once made a break of 13 in Gervin’s Snooker Club in the 70s, maintains the crowd were backed the whole way up the M1 to Moira in one direction and Strabane the other way:
“3 million sounds about right. Landi’s nearly ran out of sausages and we narrowly avoided a riot by convincing some people to just have beans and chips without the sausages. And Dennis Taylor is only 4 foot 5 inches so no one could see anything on the lorry. It was a bollocks of a day.”
The 3’000’000 tally surpasses the 2.5m who turned up at Edendork Hall when Darren Clarke won the British Open even though Clarke headed to Portrush himself that day.
Following a spate of high-profile celebrity deaths as 2016 comes to a close, the Tyrone County Treasure Comittee have urged over 30 local personalities to take advantage of an underground bunker in Omagh for a few days, built in 1986 when they were worried about Halley’s Comet hitting the town.
Luminaries such as Paul Brady, Philomena Begley, Darren Clarke, Barry McElduff, Michelle Gildernew, Malachi Cush, Hugo Duncan, Willie McCrea, Lynette Fay, Brian Dooher and Dennis Taylor have already taken refuge in the bunker which has a 24-hour blood pressure monitor and running machine installed, wired up to a GP’s surgery in Gortin.
Speaking on behalf of the Committee, Janet Garvey admitted it was tough leaving out some of our more well known stars:
“Owen Mulligan turned up with a six Harp tins and a 14 bag of Walkers Crisps but we thought he wasn’t sending out the vibes we want in there, especially as he was dressed up as the grim reaper. There was also no room for Sam Neill and Peter Kay as they haven’t really spent much time in the county.”
Early reports suggest things haven’t settled well with eye witnesses confirming Dooher and McElduff were engaged in a fist fight at the bunker door over allegations of snoring and snattering during the middle of the night.
The bunker will be opened again on January 1st 2017 with the majority of them expected to leave.
Officials at the internationally renowned Brackaville Golf Course are awaiting a response from Darren Clarke after they wrote him a letter asking for the £50 he won in a charity tournament in 1990. Internal investigations revealed that the Dungannon man failed to sign his scorecard at the end of his round. The then 22-year old reportedly spent the money on stout in the Brackaville GFC club.
“Rules are rules,” course manager Frank Fay told us. “This might be the best thing to happen to Darren – he’ll not make that mistake again.”
Fay added that Clarke’s ‘people’ told him over the phone that Darren hasn’t got £5o on him at the minute but that the next time he wins a big tournament he’ll definitely send over a cheque.
“That’s not good enough. I understand he hasn’t won much lately and is probably living off beans but debts are debts. We need that £5o as much as he does. The lawnmower’s bucked and Patsy’s goat has been under the weather so we’re stressed out here too. If we don’t see that money by the end of the month, there will be a couple of Brackaville boys making their way to his place, wherever that is.”
Fay also announced they have renamed the controversial 4th hole ‘The Rory McIlroy’ because that hole straddles both townlands of Roughan and Brackaville and people can have one foot in one place and the other in another creating a lot of confusion about where they are. He hopes the 4-time major winner will open the new hole ‘and bring a rake of fancy wemen with him‘.
The phenomenon of nominative determinism – which describes the increased likelihood of choosing a profession as a result of being born to a particular surname – is currently being studied to see if location also has an impact on adult career choices.
A Tyrone Tribulations envoy met with Professor Johnny Pointless and his students at Oxford University’s sociology department, and hoped to prove that none other than our very own County Tyrone has the highest incidence of name-sake related jobs.
“It has long since been held that there is a strong link between one’s family name and the professional path people choose in life” professor Pointless told us, “even back to Shakespearean times. A look at some of the Co. Tyrone examples are quite remarkable, if true.”
Examples discussed included world famous golfer Darren Clarke, who spent his early years as a junior bookkeeper, training to be an accountant with a Dungannon firm. Unfortunately for Tiger Woods et al, Clarke decided in his early 20s that he wanted to explore another field.
Another Tyrone example was that Dennis Taylor had been a clothing alterations specialist at a formal dress-hire company in Dungannon. Taylor finally got fed up measuring lads for their school formals, and taking up trousers, so he decided to head for the dole queue. Soon he bridged the gap between Ireland and England, pocketing a fortune over the years.
Taylor did always however maintain contact with his protégé, local tv and radio star Malachi Cush, who himself was an all-Ireland snooker and pool underage champion. This example of nominative determinism explains why Taylor’s trousers were always impeccable during snooker tournaments.
Tyrone Tribulations also informed the Oxford team of the two brothers from Derrylaughan who have been running a very successful ‘Sahara animal trekking experience’ tour business along the romantic shores of Lough Neagh.
Following from their popularity, ‘Camel’s Riding School’ looks set to open for local kids parties this coming September. While Oxford pointed there were “parochial pronunciation issues at play” (Campbell versus Camel) this still did in fact qualify as a case where one’s surname had an influence on their paid profession.
Post and present Tyrone senior footballers and great friends Darren McCurry and Ryan (Ricey) McMenamin are opening a chain of Chinese takeaway restaurants in Dromore, with half and half a discounted special. This, also we are told, does qualify.
Other examples we raised with the team included former footballing greats such as Mickey Coleman, who has decided to put down his guitar and has stocked up on household fuels for the winter months. Chris and Stevie Lawn have obtained a franchise for a gardening firm and are presently seeking contracts round Moortown and Ardboe.
Former last gasp saviour and ‘keeper, John Devine is rumoured to be down in Maynooth in the early stages of becoming a deacon which was also accepted within the guidelines set primarily by the dictionary.
Stevie O’Neill being ‘a deadly man on a size five ball’ is not something the panel would accept at this stage, although we have arranged they be flown over to the next Clann na Gael training session to help reverse their decision on the 2005 Footballer of the year.
When we informed them of a postman in Coalisland called Pat, researchers confirmed that this was just an amusing coincidence and didn’t really qualify as nominative determinism. Also Mickey Harte, being universally loved all around the County, was “a totally separate matter… maybe if he was a surgeon or something” stated Pointless… little does he know we told him.
Following recent reports in the Irish News that proud gay boxing champion, and great fella, Junior Quinn from Clonoe wanted to be called ‘Queen’ again, Oxford’s boffins ruled this was just a pronunciation issue, “and again totally different to what we have been telling you all day.”
Also mentioned was Big Willie Anderson the Dungannon and Ireland rugby great who we said has tried to dismiss talk of some 1980s videotapes he made. Added to the disappointment that we could not produce the tapes, Pointless and his team indicated it would not have been counted anyway as Willie is a Christian name, not his family name, and ‘Big’ is an endearing term for the man because he is so well liked around his town.
While we await the final outcome to be announced, it can be confirmed that Tyrone is in the final two areas being reviewed. Also in the running are the Choctaw Indians of the USA, who actually do include an awful lot of real Indians.
Fitzpatrick, who claims he was just lightening up ‘a serious shower of people‘, was warned 14 times over the weekend before being evicted after a comment left Rory McIlroy visibly shook up on the 17th tee.
The comment which broke the patience of the Hoylake officials was when Fitzgerald innocently bellowed:
“you need to wash yer balls, Rory”
Rory had to take five minutes to chat to his psychologist before clinching his first British Open. Fitzgerald claims he was simply looking after his countryman and that he’d say the same to any Irish golfer after a wintery day on the course.
“This is another example of the PC brigade gone crazy. On Friday I was made to pay a fine of £40 after shouting ‘look at the size of his putter’ at Tiger Woods’ yoke. Then on Saturday I roared at Darren Clarke ‘that’s a quare and big hole you’re looking at’. His caddie went clean mad thinking I was slagging him. I was only trying to boost Darren’s confidence.”
Brackaville par 3 golf course have pledged to run a course on proper etiquette next week
Major winner Darren Clarke from Dungannon, who has shed pounds through a gruelling fitness programme, is reportedly about to slim his name as well, following in the footsteps of American singer Prince who adopted a symbol in the 90s. Reports tonight within the county suggest that many local stars may also follow suit including footballer Peter Canavan, singer Hugo Duncan and snooker player Dennis Taylor.
A golfing insider, who may or may not have met the golfing giant, insists he will choose a circle with a pile of lines around it and a plus sign. Johnny Ray added:
“Yes, he will probably adopt the symbol soon, reflecting his new look. It’s sort of hard to pronounce but it’s sort of like Gnnrrrhhh. To be honest I haven’t spoken to Darren about this but there’s a chance this is true. It could mark an Indian Summer for the great man, despite the difficulty the first tee announcers will have saying Gnnrrrhhh.”
Reports from Ballygawley suggest that Peter Canavan is watching closely how all this pans out and already has a sign made for his switch from a normal name to a symbol. GAA expert Donal McAnulty admitted:
“I have been heavily involved in this process. If all goes well with Darren, Peter Canavan’s new name will be a bemused baldy man symbol. Word people say it’s pronounced Verrrrmm. I have it on good authority that if this goes ahead he will refuse to answer anyone who calls him Peter.”
Hugo Duncan will soon announce that a cream bun will be his new name whilst Dennis Taylor will adopt a piece of turf in place of his baptismal name.
Meanwhile Prince, who now uses his original name, has warned against these proposed changes, claiming it was awkward on the phone when people would ask for him using his one-time symbol which was completely silent when translated.
“I was on the bucking phone for ages asking who they were looking to speak to. Sometimes up to four hours.”
A young couple from Tyrone hope to make it big in the charts by launching their debut single which could also put Coalisland firmly on the pop music map.
Using a cover version of the Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers classic ‘Islands in the Stream’ with amended lyrics, Killian Grugan and Clare Toner, both from Brackaville, will release ‘Island in the Stream’ next month, inspired by the heavy rain experienced by the town in recent weeks, when at one stage Main Street almost turned into a river.
Unemployed sandwich-filler Toner, 22, agreed to share the lyrics of the first verse, which retains the same tune as the Dolly Parton version:
You do something to me that I can’t explain
Maybe it’s the people or the pelting rain
Or our Belfast links, it’s fifteen minutes there and back
Disneyland has nothing on our Newell Stores
Tiger Woods once played at Brackaville’s golf course
And our wemin he loved, Coalisland girls are mad for craic
The chorus then goes on:
‘Island in the Stream
Of that there is no doubt
Come see our deadly Spar
Take a lovely cruise on our quare canal
And we’ve the Central Bar, ha ha
And the Yankee Star, ha ha
Other verses remain a secret but Toner revealed,
“We’ve done a whole verse on the parking facilities in the ‘Island, and we were going to do more on transport links but we couldn’t think of a word that rhymed with Ulsterbus”.
She went on to explain how the idea came about on the spur of the moment.
“One day we popped into O’Neill’s when it was bucketing down for a quick one, and we had this wile idea. Let’s put the ‘Island on the map. They were playing Dolly Parton in the background and we both love Dolly so what better way to big up the ‘Island than re-writing one of her best songs? To be honest we were hammered by that time, but fair play we’ve carried it through. We’re going to be the biggest boy/girl pop group since them ones like Sonny and Cher, or Cagney and Lacey.”
Grugan, 24, a full-time ear defender, responded to questions over the accuracy of the lyrics, saying,
“Aye, well maybe a fifteen minute round trip to Belfast is stretching it a bit, but we’ve got to appeal to the tourists from Americay. That’s why we’ve mentioned the canal, see? And I’m sure I heard that Tiger Woods once played golf here. Or maybe it was Darren Clarke. Or somebody”. He went on, “There’s plenty songs that have put places on the map before. Where would London be without ‘The Streets of London’, Glasgow without ‘I belong to Glasgow’ or New York without ‘Viva Las Vegas’? Even ‘Mountains of Pomeroy’ made Pomeroy world-famous”.
Hopes are high for interviews in the London Times, Le Monde and the Coalisland Post. If the single is successful, the duo intend to record another re-written Dolly Parton classic entitled ‘Nine To Five-miletown’.
Speculation continued to grow last night that a grudge 1970s-style wrestling match is to be held between son of Coalisland snooker superstar Dennis Taylor and Dungannon-born golfing supremo Darren Clarke.
Local fight promoter Barney O’Connor said,
“Controversy has raged since Clarke won the Open in 2011 about which of these two world champion athletes is the best. And there’s really only one sensible and transparent way to objectively resolve it, and that’s getting the two of them to bate seven shades of shite out of each other in a no-holds-barred slug-fest marathon. We need to sort this out for once and for all. They probably hate each other.”
After failing to secure a booking at the world-famous fight venue Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas, O’Connor advised that the event will now be held in Tattyreagh Community Centre at the end of September. Sources close to Taylor and Clarke however, confirmed that neither sportsman knew anything about the fight or that they would want anything to do with it.
“Aye, that’s right”, said O’Connor with a grin, whilst winking and tapping the side of his nose. “Neither sportsmen know anything about it. Course they don’t. But these two have got form at wrestling. Don’t you forget it. When Clarke was playing Tiger Woods for the world title in California in 2000, he gave Tiger a ‘Big Darren Splash’ when they were both stuck in the bunker on the 16th. Why do think Woods lost his form in recent years? His ribs are still killing him. And Taylor’s no better. During a break away from the cameras just before the last frame of the World Championship in the 1985 final, Dennis gave Steve Davis a forehand chop, got him in a half-nelson and then finished with a pile driver by jumping off one of the practice tables onto his head. No wonder Davies lost. You’ve heard of the famous Mohammed Ali and George Foreman fight, the Rumble in the Jungle? Well, this’ll be the Fray in Tattyreagh. Class”.
Speculation increased further last night, when a man wearing funny glasses was reportedly seen going into shops in Coalisland Main Street and asking if they sold colourful leotards ‘for the larger gentleman’.