By Aughohilly Schniffles
An unemployed male from Coalisland is due to appear in Dungannon District Court facing drunken disorderly charges, following a single arrest in the town on Saturday night. It is understood that the charges against the man are in relation to ‘fighting with his own reflection’ in Uncle Sam’s shop window.
Onlookers on the night described how Shane O’Neill, a trainee traditional musical spoons player from the town, left O’Neill’s bar and headed for home muttering to himself when he happened upon his own reflection in the pizza shop window.
Aggravated by the sight of himself uttering nonsense, he angrily blurted “What did you say ya slabber?” and thus began a thirty-four minute deluge of self-deprecation and insults before a single punch was thrown.
“It was a bit like that thing in primary school when you let on you want to fight, but you really don’t. You know, where you have a friend holding you back to make you look all hard… well, it was the same as that, only Shane had no-one else to hold him back, so the start dragged on a bit longer that normal before he punched the glass window…”
Another startled observer told us
“There must have been about 50 ‘naw, you come-ons’ before he opened the shooting with an overhand jab-hook.”
By the time the row had actually started, an estimated crowd of some fifteen thousand people had showed up in the town at 3am, some 12,000 more than turned out for Dennis Taylor’s homecoming in nineteen eighty-something. Some came from as far away as Cappagh, and brought their own sandwiches. We are unable to confirm the figure of fifteen thousand at this stage.
It is understood that O’Neill broke two teeth, injured three knuckles, half his beard, one eye and two ears, and has applied to the Northern Ireland Office for compensation following the fracas. No glass was harmed in the incident
Taking Stephen Nolan’s lead, O’Neill has also threatened legal action against anyone who shared videos of his ordeal on whatsapp or twitter, though this may be particularly hard to enforce, as Donald Trump shared it and got over a million re-tweets.
If anyone has the video footage of the incident, please re-tweet it to @gombeen
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.
An Omagh artist, whose style has been described a ‘surreal or abstract or something like that’ by a local secondary school art teacher, has been tipped by family and friends to bring major honours to the county next year after he released a taster of some of his current work.
Titled ‘Major Moments In Tyrone’s Recent History’, Paul Montague painted Dennis Taylor’s 1985 World Snooker Championship win, Kevin McCabe’s penalty point in 1986 and Tom McDermott’s famous red shorts scene in Big Brother in 2000.
Local art teacher and hippy Miss Kelly Donnelly gave a detailed commentary on each picture:
Here, you can see the nervous smile from the Coalisland potter as he maybe is unsure of the overall score as he’s possibly not good at adding up. He’s holding the cue above his head to try and influence the judges. The small table symbolises how he dominated the sport at that time. Taylor is also floating on air and that is self-explanatory. The spelling of Dennis’ surname represents something too.
Here, you can see the blue sky symbolising Tyrone’s high hopes that day. You can also witness the Kerry goalkeeper doing some kind of war dance, maybe an indication of the tribal lifestyle in Kerry in the 1980s. Finally, you can see that McCabe has one leg a bit longer than the other, reflecting the power he put into the shot, making it sky over the bar, and we can see that he wasn’t happy. The absence of his moustache is a surprise, maybe showing how Tyrone were playing as a team, not as individuals.
This form of erotic art is self-explanatory. Tom’s facial expression reflects his state of ecstasy. Not much more to be said about that, to be honest. His Greencastle tan is unerringly accurate.
Framed copies of Montague’s artistry can be purchased for £49.99.
A hardened Coalisland drinker has repeated his intention to sue Paul Brady over the lyrics to ‘The Island’ which he claims to have written in the mid-80s on a brown chip bag in Baldo’s Pub after meeting the woman of his dreams in the Greenvale the night before.
Conor ‘The Red Boy’ McGlinchey (48) maintains he wrote the song as an ode to Ursula McStravick after a whirlwind romance at the Cookstown disco the night before Dennis Taylor won the World Snooker Championship in 1985. Brady, who released the song a year later, has yet to comment on the accusations and it is understood no one has asked him about it either.
Locals have questioned the legitimacy of McGlinchey’s claims after studying the lyrics of the song which include:
I want to take you to the Island,
And trace your footprints in the sand,
And in the evening when the sun goes down,
We’ll make love to the sound of the ocean.
They’re raising banners over by the markets,
Whitewashing slogans on the shipyard walls,
Witchdoctors praying for a mighty showdown,
No way our holy flag is gonna fall,
Up here we sacrifice our children
McGlinchey is adamant that Brady changed a few of the lines:
“There’s no way I mentioned anything about the ocean. I referenced the Lough but that’s probably not romantic enough for big-shot Brady. And for shipyard I said Kelly’s Yard. Everything else is spot on.”
Archaeologists have been called to the premises of one of Coalisland’s most hallowed drinking establishments to ascertain the exact date of the brown paper bag which was found down the back of a radiator during renovations. Initial reports suggest a sticker saying ‘Landi’s 12/10/15‘ casts immediate doubt on McGlinchey’s claims.
Meanwhile Kenny Rogers has confirmed that his ditty ‘Islands In The Stream’ was penned after visiting Coalisland during a particularly wet day, revealing he phoned his mother in America to say that ‘the Island’s in the stream’.
Following the news that a motion supporting the name change of Londonderry to Derry was passed at a meeting of Derry City and Strabane District Council, a south Derry cartographer has confirmed the existence of a townland in Kildress called London which had been played down by locals since 1677.
This startling revelation has resulted a petition signed by 16’000 Derry people asking for a public apology for the verbal abuse received from Tyrone men and women at football matches and nightclubs about there being ‘no London in Tyrone’, especially in the 90s.
Ballinderry headmaster Aidan McGuckian confirmed there’ll be no rest until someone like Barry McElduff makes a public apology:
“So it turns out that not only was there no Sam in Tyrone from 93-03, but there was also a London in it. This changes everything. Thinking back, when the chant of ‘Oh there’s no London in Tyrone’ was reverberating around Clones back in the 90s, the Kildress ones never took part in the insult and stood huddled together, sweaty and red-faced. I just thought that’s the way they were. Bastards.”
Moves are already underway to plan how the apology will be presented to the people of Derry. An extraordinary meeting was called in Kildress involving high profile Tyrone figures from Dennis Taylor to Hugo Duncan. Duncan has promised to pen an apologetic song which he’ll play on the radio, entitled ‘Kiss my Derry Air’. A statue of Dana will also be commissioned to be erected at the middle of the road in Galbally.
Sinn Fein’s Barry McElduff has promised to wear a Derry jersey for a week at Stormont and use ‘sur’ at the end of every sentence.
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.
Ronnie ‘The Rocket’ O Sullivan has been linked with a move to the bubbling metropolis of Coalisland, after residents reported seeing him enter Mc Glone and Mc Cabe property specialists and stopping to sign a few autographs for the kids.
It is believed Ronnie and his wife are interested in renting a property in the Mountcairn area of the town, while waiting on planning permission to convert the former RUC station into a luxury five million pound home complete with pool and pool table (in different rooms).
We understand that after a conversation with Dennis Taylor about the love that he still holds for his home town, ‘The Rocket’ was tempted to take a look for himself. Tyrone Tribulations can confirm that Ronnie had already visited Gervin’s snooker hall, where Mr Taylor plied his trade in his formative years, and is keen to get a funny picture of himself on the wall beside the Steve Davis one. His relocation was hugely influenced by the proximity of the former barracks to a thriving snooker hall, and the lure of free ‘park and walk’ facilities literally anywhere round the town- day or night.
Ronnie was also snapped by locals, wolfing down a Philly cheese steak at Landi’s restaurant which he clearly enjoyed and was even very grateful for the free dozen or so chips he got with it, informing staff that ‘you just don’t get that in England.’
Ronnie’s family are also keen on the move, with his young son Ronnie junior very excited about schooling at St Patrick’s Academy in Dungannon especially now that its mixed and there are plenty of girls to mingle with.
“Jeez, they’ll go mad for the wee hoor’s accent”
admitted St Patrick’s Academy’s new principal Patsy Sweeney who was voted in with help from a recent surge in far right Dungannon polling.
Maisy Dooey, next door but one from the former police station, was happy to have a few words with us:
“Ach, sure it’ll be great to see the oul barracks tuck down. I’m fed up looking at all the Republican stuff on the front of her…”
When quizzed about the prospect of new neighbours from England, she added
“aye, lucksee, sure it’s one set of Brits not long out, and a new set moves in. Let’s hope these ones aren’t as noisy. I’d say they will love how close they are to the lough, y’know with young childer an all that, apart from all the flies. Throw me over them weishing pegs will you, I’ve a load just finished spin cycle there”
The Rocket O’Sullivan’s good friend Ronnie Wood of Rolling Stones’ fame is also reputedly very familiar with Coalisland, having never missed an International Music Festival held there since its inception in 1994, reportedly enjoying the Polish bands’ dancing, and drinking down the line till the wee hours.
Ronnie was last seen outside the barber shop, staring in the window for some time as if looking in a mirror, until the proprietor came out and chased him.
Scientists last night were said to be dumbfounded and bedazzled at the discovery of old mobile phones at a dig in the area, dating right back to the 1960s.
Authorities were notified about possible important fossils after diggers at a new site on the town came across a pile of massive mobile phones wrapped up in toilet tissue paper. On further inspection, it appears that these mobiles pre-dated the iphone and other smart phones by at least 40 years going by some of the text messages discovered on them.
One such message dates back to the 1969 moon landing and hints at the scepticism around Stewartstown at the time:
Professor Jack Lyons explains:
“This is quite remarkable. It appears that the residents of Stewartstown had invented messaging capabilities long before the superpowers across the globe. Going by the finds, it appears they were using BT as a service provider by hooking up one big phone to an electricity pole as a generator. “
Other examples show a timeline of life in the 80s and 90s in Stewartstown:
Local historian Kitty Fee was coy on the finds:
“Yes I was aware we were ahead of the game at the time. But, it’s something we don’t want dug up, ok? In 1999 we took a decision to destroy all these phones after sexting became rife in the town. Men and women were sending dirty pictures to each other at all hours and the priest was going mad and said he was going to excommunicate us all. It had to stop. Now, move on.”
One of our journalists was able to leak another text to the office which throws light on the sexting debacle that threatened to destabilise the town:
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.”
By Fr Riddle Lynn (guest journalist from portglenone.wordpress.com)
As a result of the unpleasantness which inevitably arises in the Portglenone area, at the very mention of the topic of Antrim and Derry, we decided to ask our readers to tell us what they felt were the 20 most influential things ever to have come out of County Tyrone.
We received literally some replies, most of which were either unprintable or illegal and one involving a goat which, quite frankly, was not even physically possible. Our Pointless Statistics Team once more got on the job but when they were finished, they put together this table of results in offending order;
20. West Tyrone Constituency Boundary: The relatively new parliamentary area has been cleverly passing itself off as France for some time now resulting in its attracting thousands of tourists expecting to see Eurodisney and The Eiffel Tower. The disappointed pilgrims are forced to make do with an electricity pylon in Urney and Eurospar, Omagh.
19. Cranagh: The village adjudged by National Geographic Magazine as ‘the furthest you can go out of the way before you start coming out the other side’.
18. Paul Brady: The curly, surly ginger, singer/songwriter and professional ‘Bosco’ impersonator who brought us the classic refrain;
I wanna take you to Coalisland
And count the off-licences per man
And in the evening when the sun goes down
We’d rip the ATM from the local filling station
17. Making Pat Spillane Puke: A classic reversal of the normal pattern of Pat Spillane making everyone else hurl their fadge.
16. The Place Name ‘Sandholes’: Deriving from the Old French ‘Sans Houlles’, meaning ‘Without Arse”, the area is credited as the home of the design of cheap supermarket denim which reduces ‘buttock protrusion’ in male wearers over 35 years of age.
15. Splash: The popular Saturday night, light entertainment programme where fading celebrities imitate their own careers by falling unceremoniously from a great height without being touched in an attempt to garner advantage which is scarcely deserved. The format is based on the career of Brian Dooher. (Apart from the great height bit obviously)
14. The Carnteel Road: By an amazing freak of geography, motorists travelling directly from Aughnacloy to Dungannon will pass the end of the Carnteel Road on no less than 14 occasions.
13. The Place Name ‘Orritor’: For the sheer joy of positioning a district which sounds like a body cavity in close proximity to another called ‘Sandholes’.
12. Sir James Cricket: A comedian who has sustained a 40 year career with an act based entirely on a humorous tea-towel which my mother brought back from Westport in 1972. Don’t come here.
11. Benburb Sunday: A day where children up to the age of 12 were rounded up by monks and made to pay to slide down a hill on a carpet of rough hardboard resulting in semi-permanent scarring of skin tissue on the thigh and elbow.
10. Dennis Taylor’s Wiggly Index Finger: Widely regarded as being amongst the finest of the gargantuan-spectacle wearing ball potter’s eleven fingers.
9. Penfold from Dangermouse: No list would be complete without the pint-sized, sidekick, cartoon-moaner and his hilarious catchphrase; “Carrickmore Gaelic Fudball Club”.
8. The Amazing Disappearing Letters ‘T’& ‘W’: Used to such wonderful effect in the pronunciation of places such as ‘Cookson” ‘Stewarson’ and ‘Twincamton’.
7. Eugene McMenamin’s Unfeasibly Black Eyebrows: The Strabane based MLA holds the distinction of having been balancing two ‘Granny Grey Beard’ caterpillars on his forehead since 1984.
6. The Red Hand of Ulster: Yeah, thanks a bunch for that!
5. The Carland Bypass: The wonderful decision to remove the one corner which broke the utter monotony of driving between Cookstown and Dungannon.
4. Eponymously Titled Products which are now Defunct: Tyrone Brick, Tyrone Crystal, Tyrone Power, Tyrone Moderate Alcohol Consumers.
3. Consilio et Prudentia: Although also the names of two Late (possibly ex) (possibly Latex) Nuns from Loretto convent in Omagh, this is actually the irony valve straining motto of the county translating as…wait for it…no I’m serious….”Wisdom & Prudence”.
2. The Untimely Demise of Tyrone Tom’s Red Shorts: The ill-thought out decision to use the Greencastle man’s iconic shorts as an agreed alternative to the Union flag on Belfast City Hall.
And of course topping the list
A much-respected Coalisland psychic has been rubbished after she predicted live on Radio Ulster that a red-haired man driving a 1991 white Datsun Sunny will receive a parking ticket in the town some time in February 2015.
Madame McAliskey (66), who accurately predicted in 1978 that snooker player Dennis Taylor would win something at some time, somewhere in the world, after 1979, made the startling claim after it was revealed that not one parking ticket had been issued in the town since the first cars arrived in 1921.
Shop owner Frank McCabe described the scene in the town after Madame McAliskey’s wild proclamation on air:
“Well, three fellas outside the undertakers laughed so hard they were taken to Craigavon Hospital with mild respiratory failure. Another girl, one of the Gervins, ended up giving birth on the spot from the giggling, two months early. To be honest I thought she was pulling Wendy Austin’s leg but it seems not. That’s her finished anyway. She was living off that Taylor prediction too long I thought, so she was.”
Local resident and avid scooter-spotter Bosco Kelly added:
“I remember my oul fella saying years ago that a travelling Yankee preacher away back in the 40s was so taken by the local women that, as a parting gift, he cursed all traffic wardens who would ever set foot in the town for 100 years. Going by that reckoning, Madame McAliskey is 30 years too soon. She’s some clift thon. Imagine believing that woman from now on.”
Meanwhile, the Coalisland Traffic Committee have confirmed that the yellow lines in the town are not yellow at all but ‘mustard’ on some roads and ‘vanilla’ on others, making it illegal anyway to dish out parking fines. They blame acid rain or “maybe lignite or something”.
Speculation is rife this morning in Tyrone that John Travolta might be playing a major role in the Coalisland Na Fianna production of Grease in early March, according to local sources. The identity of the roles for Danny and Sandy have been kept under wraps since rehearsals began weeks ago, with many speculating on various celebs such as Dennis Taylor, Peter Kay’s mother, Damien O’Hagan, Anne Brolly and Peter Herron.
However, late last night, three Coalisland men were spotted getting into a car on Lineside and shouting about ‘headin to the airport’ and ‘yee-har’. One of the Grease backroom team admitted John Travolta was on their radar:
“To be honest I’m worried. Our first performance is Friday 7th March and we probably should have approached Travolta before now. Anyhow, we’ve sent our three best negotiators to America to convince John to head over here and give us what we want. It was hard trekking him down online on facebook and stuff so the lads said they’ll get the first flight to anywhere in America and just ask about when they get there.”
The identity of Sandy also remains a mystery with strong talk of Damien O’Hagan in drag being a possibility. Local hairdresser Jenny Timlin reckons the chemistry between Travolta and O’Hagan is mouth-watering:
“I’m weak at the knees even thinking about that possibility. There’ll be a whole lotta shaking going on. Even house in Coalisland has a picture of JFK, the Pope and Damien O’Hagan. John and Damien singing ‘You’re The One That I Want’ in harmony would make millions if released. We’re hopelessly devoted to O’Hagan around the parts. There’ll be tears on my pillow if they don’t go together.”
Local PP Fr Hampsey warned the production team they’ll be monitoring the show closely:
“Shows like this should only be for summer nights. If Travolta shakes his hips like a hound dog and gets the wemen screaming, he’ll be put into the boot of my motor and driven to Aldergrove like lightning. Dennis Taylor too. O’Hagan can do what he wants.”
This event will take place on Friday March 7 and Saturday March 8 at 8:00 pm.
Former US diplomat Richard Haass has admitted defeat for the second time in a couple of days after his efforts to resolve the Ardboe Christmas Tree dispute ended in several parties tearing the heads off each other.
The argument revolved around who will turn off the lights on Ardboe’s first ever Christmas tree. Mickey Coleman, Brian McGuigan, Barry Devlin, Adrian McGuckin, Chris Lawn, Tom McGurk, Malachi Cush, Ronan McSherry, Dennis Taylor, Kevin McAleer, Mickey Harte, Pope Francis and Billy Ray Cyrus were all named as interested parties, each putting forward viable reasons for pulling the plug out.
Haass, who admitted Ardboe was a ‘wild place’ on a par with Kosovo and Sierra Leone, was able to narrow it down to four celebs after intense negotiations:
“We managed to rule out McGuckin and Lawn as we suspected they were there to sabotage the event, being enemies in some shape or form. The cost for the Pope was astronomical. Apart from the flights, the pot holes would wreck the popemobile. No insurance around here. Harte, McAleer, McSherry, Taylor, Cush and McGurk were ruled out next during the eel-skinning demonstration.”
With Coleman, McGuigan, Devlin and Billy Ray Cyrus left, tensions were beginning to reach boiling point with accusations of bribes and counter arguments over ancestry muddying the waters.
“I thought dealing with Robinson and McGuinness was tough. These guys are stubborn. It ended up in a bare-knuckle contest between all four.”
Haass left the scene an hour into the free-for-all, admitting defeat and vowing never to return to the island again.
Coalisland will be the envy of the world this year after a secret Christmas committee finally decided to spend the recent windfall on a deadly tree.
The news that £15’000 would be spent on decorating Coalisland this Christmas had set tongues wagging for weeks as to what it will be spent on. In order to tap into the excitement, Coalisland council ran a competition asking residents to put their ideas into a suggestion box outside Sullivan’s on the Main Street. The closing date showed that 400 suggestions had been made with the top five listed below:
- A new mural but with Santa in a balaclava
- Flashing balls all over the place
- A big line of tinsel on the electric wires running from Edendork to Clonoe
- A deadly tree
- Spend the money on bacon soap for everyone
Coalisland independent councillor Pat Campbell was impressed at the wide range of ideas:
“There were some brilliant bits of thinking in Coalisland. Unfortunately we just had to turn down most to appease some groups like the NASA, RSPCA or the UN. One I liked was to decorate all animals like cows and dogs with glittery bells, balls, stars and all that stuff. We decided to pump the whole £15’000 into a deadly tree to be placed inside the Cornmill with a hole cut in the roof for it to stick out. It’ll be about 300 foot tall and we’ll get it from Brazil.”
Our investigations showed that £12’000 will be spent on transport from South America, £2000 on decorations, £500 for John Stokes for the loan of his truck and £500 on cocktail sausages for the opening.
The next big question is who will turn on the lights with local bookies offering mouth-watering options:
- Dennis Taylor 2/1f
- Harry Potter 7/2
- Harry McClure 4/1
- Obama 5/1
- Michael Jackson 6/1
- Malachi Cush 6/1
- One of the Spice Girls 8/1
- Ronan McSherry 33/1
- The Clonoe captain 50/1
- A PSNI official 100/1
- A traffic warden 1000/1
- Joe Brolly 10’000-1
Giovanni Trappatoni, the ex-Ireland soccer manager, has sensationally handed in an application form for the always-vacant lollipop person job in Coalisland – once voted the most dangerous job in the world by Which? magazine. The East Tyrone town has failed to attract one applicant since the job was first advertised in 1972 despite the promise of £20’000 per year, a lucrative pension, a Honda Civic and free sausage suppers every day. Local independent Councillor Jamie Campbell has admitted he fears for the Italian maestro:
“I’m slightly worried about this latest development. In 1975 one lad from the Intermediate did his work experience here as lollipop man and lasted three hours. The last I heard he was fighting demons in his head. I know Trappatoni has worked in hostile environments such as Milan and Turin, but Coalisland is a whole new level completely. The people won’t take too kindly to being told to stop when their car is already moving forward. It’s ‘arrivederci’ already I’m afraid, Giovanni.”
Coalisland has notoriously been resistant to any form of traffic control since the introduction of cars to the area in 1927. Recently it was revealed that no parking tickets have been issued in the town since 1985, when Dennis Taylor was nabbed the morning after his victory parade.
Trappatoni has ignored pleas to take a break from the country and insists he can do a job:
“As manager of Ireland all I ever heard was ‘Coalisland traffic’ this and ‘Coalisland traffic’ that from the players. We even had a training routine exercise called “The Coalisland” which was a game where no one took corners. I know I can make a difference. Initially I will keep it tight and slow the pace of the town down and encourage a safer environment for jay-walking. Eventually we’ll be enforcing total driving which will see people use the handbrake for up to 20 seconds. I believe in my motorists”.
A small problem arose this even when Trappatoni informed us he intends not using a lollipop stick but will instead shout his instructions. Unfortunately the word for ‘stop’ in Italian is ‘bastad’ which might cause early teething difficulties.
Archaeologists in Coalisland have unearthed what appears to be a roundabout in the centre of the town. The discovery ends decades of speculation about whether a traffic management system ever existed in the historic home of coal and chips.
The expert archaeologist, whom some know personally as the long-haired man from Coast, made a statement last night confirming everyone’s suspicions:
“After months of back-breaking work, sore knees and lunch time pints in Baldos, we can confirm the existence of a type of circular intersection in which road traffic is slowed and flows almost continuously in one direction. It’s an incredible find”.
For years, the origin of the mound was a source of conflicting reports. We caught up with local historian Barney ‘Billiards Barney’ O’Neill who shed some light on the subject:
“Some in the town thought it an ancient burial ground; some say it’s the by-product of years of tractor diffing; a few think it’s the top of a giant snooker ball that fell from space on the day Dennis Taylor was born. Me personally, I believe it to be the resting place of Red Hugh, the five times South Tyrone cock fighting champion”.
As the word of the roundabout spread across town, not everyone was as upbeat. Dicky McGeary, of Plater’s Hill in the town and all-round pessimist, gave his views of the finding.
“I’ve been driving for 30 odd years and never had call for a roundabout and I can’t see me using one now. Using them indication lights is one thing but I draw the line at turning circles. Drive her like you stole her, that’s what I say”
Local trader Eddie McGee of Main Street added:
“Roundabout? What a load of auld dung.”
At the time of writing Tribulations are unsure of what this will mean for the drivers of Coalisland. We tried to reach the DoE Roads Dept for some insight but were told that the entire team were in Ardboe looking at a hole.
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’.
Leaked plans from a source within Dungannon & South Tyrone Council have revealed that the Council is planning to spend the £400m budget, originally earmarked for the A5 road extension, on a huge party for the 150,000 lucky residents in Tyrone. An anonymous source told us:
“We were going to get the money taken away anyway so we might as well use it on something. We’ve not done the sums yet on how much it works out at per resident because our calculators don’t go to enough decimal places, but it should be the price of a whole clatter of pints for every man, woman and child”.
The original expectation was that the funds would be withdrawn and used elsewhere in Ireland or the EC for other projects. However, the source said that officials discovered that they can re-classify the £400m expense from ‘A5 Road multi-million pound upgrade’ into a category called ‘Miscellaneous Expenses’ without anyone noticing.
Plans are already underway to have a one-day celebration of all that is good about Tyrone, including Irish dancing, bull-fighting, tyre-kicking, dwarf wrestling, diffing, laundering, slagging, passing down clothes and St Bridgid’s Cross weaving. The leaked 10-point document outlines the plans for the event which will be organised by the Council, expected to take place mid-August:
- ‘Mad Musical Spectacular’, better than Band Aid. Featuring band made up of Bono, Philomena Begley, Paul McCartney and Dennis Taylor. Follow up with charity recording The Mountains of Pomeroy, featuring Sting on the spoons. Get Lady Gaga if Philomena not available.
- Derrylaughan to be re-classified as 2013 City of Culture. Persuade people in Derry that them getting it was an admin error.
- Get Derrylaughan re-classified as a City
- Free Moy Park chicken for every Tyrone resident. Utility bill as proof of address required. Cookstown Sausages instead for any vegetarians.
- ‘All Star Football’ featuring 1986 Tyrone versus the 1966 England World Cup Team
- Fly Pope and entourage over for the day as special guest of honour. Use Easyjet to keep cost down but agree to pay for Easyjet Meal Deal for Pope only, to include sandwich, Pringles and bar of chocolate of His Holiness’s choice.
- A lock of pints for every resident. Get Costcutters to do a deal.
- Free sick bag for every family.
- Bulldoze Asda in Cookstown. Build 3,000-foot statue of Peter Canavan.
- Bribe BBC producers for Tyrone to feature on ‘Lesser Spotted Ulster’ every week for next 5 years
The day will be hosted by Ant or Dec, whichever is cheaper.
By Shengas McGlumphie
A mix-up at the EC in Brussels resulted in Coalisland, population less than 5,000, being accidentally twinned with Cologne, Germany’s 4th largest city with a population of over 1 million.
“I suppose it was a wee touch embarrassing” admitted Des Crawford, local businessman and Chairman of the Coalisland Enterprise Trust, which sent a delegation of six to meet with the Cologne mayor and his team to celebrate the twinning. “We meant to Google Cologne beforehand when the penny might have dropped but to be fair what with all the excitement of going on a plane we forgot”.
One of the Irish contingent, Seamy Hughes, a butcher from the Island, came close to sparking a major diplomatic incident within hours of landing in the city.
“To be honest we only invited him because he said he had a good bit of the German language as he did it at school”, admitted Crawford, “So when Heinz started rabitting away in German we pushed Seamy to the front to do a bit of the German chat. Jaysus, did he not just stand there in front of yer man and yell “Vot is it you vont”, at the top of his voice in this mad German accent, followed by, ‘Vood you like to see ze papers?’ We didn’t know where to look. I thought at one stage he was going to start goose-stepping”.
Affairs took a further turn for the worse on the 4-day programme during the official exchange of gifts, with Cologne giving Coalisland a set of commemorative coins, an original piece of German artwork nearly 200 years old, and some bespoke jewellery believed to be valued at €30,000 (£25,000). In return, the Coalisland team had brought Cologne a Tyrone GAA car air freshener and some Kimberley Mikado biscuits. With the help of an interpreter, relations improved on the second evening over several glasses of Reisling.
“It was a bit of craic, and they were bangin’ on about all these famous boys that came from Cologne, including some composer, Beethoven”, said Crawford. “So they’re saying about how proud they are of their Beethoven boy and we just sat there and said two words – ‘Dennis’ and ‘Taylor’. Aw, you should have seen their faces. Total silence! They never knew Dennis came from the Island see. They had no idea. We trumped them there boys! Deadly!”
Exchanging information on the relative merits of Coalisland and Cologne presented no issues for the Island team, according to Crawford.
“Jaysus they were going on about their ‘40 museums’ this and their ‘Cologne Cathedral’ that. It all pales into insignificance when you see thon new Newell’s Stores in the Island. It’s a belter. Did you know they even sell parmesan cheese? Unbelievable. It knocks themuns and all their fancy Cologne boutiques into a cocked hat, I’ll tell ye that”.