The controversy around the Renewable Heat Incentive scheme, an attempt by the Northern Ireland Executive to help to increase consumption of heat from renewable sources, has taken a further twist this morning after a whistleblower from Strabane produced more damning evidence of its misuse.
Leaked photos confirm that farmers from all over the county have been visiting a shed in Strabane which has been fitted out with 50 hi-tech sunbeds, fired by burning millions of wood pellets being sold on the black market by a strawberry farmer in Eglish.
The anonymous source, who was a long-term user of the sunbeds until a bad burning when he fell asleep in one, revealed the extent of the racket:
“Why did you think farmers had a deadly tan in winter? We all use the ‘Strabane Shed’ as it’s known in farming circles, some times three days a week, free of charge. Yer man is making millions whilst sporting a glowing tan all year around and the women hanging off him in he town. But it has to stop. The Health and Safety Policy is non-existent.”
Additionally, the puzzle of the prevelance of giant tomatoes across the county this year has finally been solved as other whistleblowers explained how sheds were also using the RHI scheme to create enormous fruit and vegetables. One such tomato was shared over 4 million times on social media after it was purchased on the side of a road near the M1. The picture showed that the tomato was bigger than the car wheel of a Seat Ibiza.
An SDLP councillor in Clady, PQ Guiney, warned:
“What don’t we know? I’ve heard stories that these sheds, with the heat powered by burning wooden pallets from the Moy, were being used to make really big sheep…you’d have to wonder why.”
Arlene Foster has yet to comment on this new evidence.
A visiting health minister from Norway has alerted local government officials that the levels of farmers rolling around in silage, naked, was probably a bit too high.
Locally called ‘bare hay rolling‘, silage fetishism is said to be particularly popular in Tattyreagh, Loughmacrory, Eglish and Brocagh and is usually performed in the evening when it’s unlikely anyone will be calling to the bespoke silo for a visit.
Professor Nilos Koreen admitted he was surprised at the popularity of silage fetishism in Ulster:
“I’ve been here a month and I’d heard local farmers talking about ‘heading home for a bit of bare hay rolling‘ and smirking so I followed one of them home to see this exciting new farming technique. Little did I know it involved the said farmer throw a bit of fresh silage behind a shed, take off his dungarees and roll around in it naked, shouting things like ‘go on ye blade ye‘ and ‘yahoooo‘ etc. And they’re all at it.”
Tyrone Farmers’ spokesman Francie Mullan responded to allegations that silage fetishism was at an all time high:
“Yiz are making us feel bad, like as if we’re doing something wrong. You people don’t know how lonely an unmarried single farmer can be. There’s no better smell than rancid butter in the evening time, especially after a hard day’s work, and if any of our farmers fancy a roll in the hay where there is a strong presence of yeast prior to the maize being fully fermented, then that’s their business.”
All of the local religious groups have yet to comment on bare hay rolling and have indicated they will furiously search their respective versions of the bible to find out if God, Moses or Jesus said anything about it.
The Moy, which is set to become the first area in the new Mid Ulster Council district to have access to natural gas as a fuel source early next year, have revealed plans to be completely self-sufficient on human waste within 5 years.
If deadlines are met, The Moy will join Fjikillippo in Iceland as the only hamlets on the planet run on excrement and wind, which economists reckon will bring millions of pounds to the area in tourism.
Moy Mayor Paul Montague is confident that the current projections are accurate:
“I am 100% committed to the 2020 project and I’m completely convinced we’ll have a fossil fuel free village before long. There’ll be no electricity poles or pylons as far as the eye can see or as far as Benburb even. We’ll link everything up to a big dungeon-type cage in the ground where people can dump their waste into or even do the business there and then over it. We’ll be using loads of Christmas tree car fresheners all over the place to disguise the smell.”
Neighbouring Eglish have reacted to the news with cynicism. Former Eglish GAA captain Mattie McGreenan growled:
“On one hand they’ve always been full of shite up in The Moy so they should have plenty of fuel for a century. But this is taking the piss. There’s no way them Moy ones will have the stomach for ferrying their excrement from their homes to that pit-type thing they’re storing it in. And how on earth are they going to transport their flatulence to the pit? It’s a farce.”
To the final question, Mayor Montague admitted their transporting of human wind has yet to be successfully solved but suggested it might simply be a case of using air-tight jam jars.
A Moy man, with suspected close connections to Armagh, has been spotted feeding young and old north Armagh residents who have crossed over into the Tyrone border foraging for breakfast and dinner.
Armagh folk, who appear to have struggled to adapt to buying and selling goods as well as general all-round basic human development, are still dependent on family members with excellent hunting skills to gather sustenance for the day – keeping alive a proud tradition dating right back to the Stone Age in the area.
Until recently, Armaghicans have restricted their plundering within their own county borders for over 6000 years. However, a growing population and cleverer wildlife have left them with no option but to look over the fence and to begin pilfering border areas such as the Moy and Eglish, angering the locals especially chicken and pig farmers.
Moy media man Colly McKill has denied leaving out scraps and whistling, before heading to bed:
“That’s just lies. I’m a whistler by nature. And if the bin men lifted the rubbish more often I wouldn’t have a bin overflowing with cakes and soda farls.”
When pressed, McKill admitted he has a romantic investment in County Armagh but was prepared to prove he wasn’t encouraging them to ravage South Tyrone for nourishment:
“OK, the wife is from across the border but I categorically deny feeding others. If you look outside you can see several man-traps primed to go off tonight in case they come raking around my land.”
Tyrone Charity Committee have organised an emergency meeting to discuss whether to aid their neighbours by setting free 8000 chickens, 5000 pigs and dropping hundreds of boxes of Tayto crisps in various points in the Orchard County.
The Tyrone County Board have confirmed that they will not overturn their decision to appoint a man with two turned-in eyes as one of their inter-county umpires for 2015.
The controversial decision came to light at the weekend after the umpire, who was officiating at an Under 16 game between Brocagh and Eglish, incorrectly awarded five goals and sixteen points over the course of an hour’s play.
Mayo, Donegal, Dublin and Kerry have already made an official complaint to Croke Park although Derry County Board explained they’d ‘wait and see how it goes’.
Pat ‘The Squint’ Kelly from Aughabrack will officiate his first National League game on February the 1st between Kerry and Mayo which will be televised live, a fact that worries close friends and relatives of The Squint.
First cousin and ex-referee John Quinn urged the county board to rethink the decision:
“No harm to The Squint but he’s the worst umpire in the country and probably across the globe. I took him as one of my umpires to Coalisland for an underage game against Edendork and on three occasions he flagged a wide, a point and a goal at the same time. The fella is seeing 2 or 3 balls every time play comes near him. It’s not his fault but surely umpiring is the last job he should be at.”
Kelly, who has wrote-off nine cars and hospitalised a barman during a game of pub darts, will take the train to Kerry to be safe.
Tyrone County Board confirmed they are firmly behind the turned-in eyes community and have pleaded with the GAA family to give Kelly a chance.
Following the furore of Gregory Campbell’s mockery of the Irish language during a Northern Ireland Assembly meeting yesterday, a Killyman entrepreneur has been accused as ‘being as bad as the DUP man’ after setting up shop on the side of the road outside the village, selling a curry yoghurt and a tin of ‘Coca Coalyer’ for a pound this morning.
Teddy Og McKenna, who has a history of cashing in on controversial events, maintains he made £300 in one hour with his novelty meal deal:
“I did get a bit of abuse from family and friends but a serious crowd from Moygashel and Newmills arrived when word got out. Them boys are the salt of the earth, and them from the other side of the house to me too. Deadly friendly.”
Teddy Og’s father Teddy Snr lambasted his son, calling him an ‘oul bollocks’ and a crook:
“This is not the first time our Teddy has stooped to this level. When Sammy Wilson was photographed running through fields in the nude a few years ago, he sold a range of invisible clothes at the same spot in the road called ‘Emperor Sammy’s New Clothes’. He sold 36 units to a pile of lads from Carrickmore and Galbally. 36 units of nothing on a hanger at £22 a shot.”
Meanwhile, the Irish News food critic sampled the curry yoghurt and labelled it ‘one of the best culinary experiences of my life’ and that the meal was ‘like a ballet of heavenly angels dancing on my palate’. It was later revealed she was still half-drunk from a charity Night At The Races in The Moy the previous night.
A Tyrone pub have confirmed they received a booking under the codename ‘The Police’ for 300 people in December, opting for the Premium Service Package (£30’000) which includes male strippers, massive German pint glasses and a live performance from a local country and western star. £35’220 was collected from the Ballygawley roundabout camera in 2014 with the promise of a few more pounds before Christmas.
Jordan’s Pub in Eglish will be packed to the rafters after owner Fonzie Jordan accepted the booking with a heavy heart as he himself was caught doing 32 in the 30mph zone last month:
“No one ever bought the Premium Service Package before so it was hard to turn down. It’ll set us up for a few months so I’ll have to bite my lip. But, 32 mph like. They’re a bunch of thieving cowboys. £60 I forked out as did everyone else in that line of motors. There must’ve been about 35 of us all travelling at that speed. I hope their sprouts aren’t too hard”
remarked Jordan with a wink and a smudge of a smile.
Jordan admitted this was not the first mass booking the pub has received in the last five years.
“a lock of years ago the Tyrone County GAA Board booked the Silver Service Package for 56 people which includes female strippers, free nuts for the tables and scented toilet freshener tablets. That put them back £24’000 which coincidentally matched the gate receipts from all club games that year. They had some craic that night and the chairman and all were wearing gold crowns and laughing at the ordinary people in the quiet bar.”
Jordan is also asking for ‘Sting’ from ‘The Police’ to phone back as soon as possible with their menu choices.
Following their harrowing three-point defeat to neighbours Armagh, it was reported that by midday today only three Tyrone people had ventured out of their house and one of those was to lock the front gates.
The loss, which sees Tyrone exit the championship in mid July, comes on top of the cancelled Brooks concerts, leaving locals with little to look forward to apart from a weekend in Bundoran here and there.
Trisha Mullen from Benburb described the scene:
“It’s a deadly quiet place at the minute. The roads are empty for fear of seeing an Armagh person. No one wants to talk even. I thought I spotted movement in a hedge near Eglish but that could have been anything. My husband did set one foot out but an Armagh Carpets van drove past and he got teary eyed and said ‘feck that’ and went back to bed. There’ll not be many fields cut this week.”
Psychologist and Armagh fanatic Dr Tony Fearon reckons the double whammy of Brooks and Tyrone will have shattered even the most resilient Tyronnie. Speaking from his house in Portadown, he added:
“It’s a severe blow to the Tyrone psyche. All that’s left now is reruns of Glenroe and slagging each other. Rub it up them I say.”
Producers of a remake of The Good The Bad And the Ugly have moved quickly and filmed several scenes in ‘ghost towns’ across the county.
Meanwhile, the Tyrone management have scotched rumours that Mickey Harte plans to give every man in the county a game by the time he retires in 2020, in order to raise spirits. Spokesman Pat Quinn fumed:
“Hardly everyone, like. It’d be suicide sticking a lame 80-year old on that big McKeever lump from Armagh. He’d ate him.”
Inspired by the story of a senior panel from Donegal club Naomh Columba who stopped to help a man turn his turf in Galway at the weekend, Ballygawley outfit Errigal Ciaran attempted a similar gesture whilst driving through Eglish on the way back from a game in The Moy yesterday.
Unfortunately, the attempted act of kindness which involved digging up 300 kilos of potatoes the size of grapes and 600 pallets of unripe strawberries, has left Eglish farmer Phonsie Jordan thousands of pounds in the red.
Clubman Johnny Bradley admitted:
“We’ve cocked up, yes. We thought it would be great PR for the club after we saw the Donegal lads do the same with the turf. We’ve a lot of students on the team and they haven’t really seen fields with spuds or strawberries in them so they aren’t to blame. We just ripped everything up and waited for the farmer to get back, with smiles on our faces. When he lifted that gun we fairly moved. In fact, some lads ran more in that thirty seconds than in the game against The Moy, going by the GPS trackers still on them.”
Jordan, who has been producing high quality produce for 50 years, fumed:
“Shower of do-gooders. Some of them spuds were as small as peanuts. How did it not dawn on them? And green strawberries….holy Jaysus.”
The Ballygawley outfit have vowed to make up for the innocent error by offering their services as scarecrows over the summer for the Eglish entrepreneur, starting with the defenders in July.
Retailers from across the county have reported a massive hike in sales of ‘going out’ clothes ever since American actress Gwyneth Paltrow announced the end of her marriage to her husband and Coldplay band member Chris Martin.
Paltrow’s announcement appears to have pricked the ears of many single men between the ages of 21-59 from Strabane to Brocagh, with many citing the fact that she goes for boys with plain names being a case for optimism.
Pat Quinn, a 33-year old boiler servicer from Gortin, admits he was straight onto the Next clothes website as soon as he heard the sad news:
“I spent £300 in the space of half an hour. Three pairs of cords (brown, black and navy), 12 check shirts and a pair of DMs. That should see me going out every weekend for the rest of the year and you just never know. I have a nice two-syllable name and if the Paltrow girl happens to be popping in for a quick pint in Mosseys any time soon, I’ll be looking the part. High hopes, like.”
Gerard King (51) from Edendork, who boasts celebrity past conquests including a second cousin of Finbar Furey and a girl who met Boris Becker, reckons he has the X-Factor to win the 41-year old Los Angeles girl’s heart:
“I seem to attract the great and the good. Just last year I curted a girl who went to school with Liam Neeson’s family gardener’s nephew. If I can get the Paltrow girl down to the bingo hall I’m sure that the Old Spice will work its magic again. Imagine having a girl called Gwyneth walking around Edendork on the end of your arm. You’d be deadly proud.”
In other news, women across the county have not reacted excitedly to the news of Chris Martin’s availability, with one informing us he sounded like ‘someone from Eglish or something’.
The release of a new Tyrone-based TV programme may be put on hold after producers declared the show ‘untransmittable’.
‘The Only Way Is Eglish’, was intended to be a ‘scripted reality’ docu-soap that told the story of six twenty-somethings living the high life together in the popular and bustling Dungannon suburb of Eglish.
However, a number of ‘insurmountable differences’, including cast members walking out, have put the series in jeopardy.
“We were sold a pup”, declared furious TV producer Tarquin Ramirez from England. “We were told that Eglish people lived in the high-class part of Tyrone, like Chelsea in London, except posher. Turns out they’re nothing of the sort. The communication barrier’s impossible. We tried putting sub-titles onto the screen for the English and the hard-of-thinking, but to honest we’re none the wiser”.
Researchers spent three hours last Sunday trying to translate the phrase, ‘Thon bale o’ hay’s couped, ye clift. Get it red up. It’s banjaxed’, believing it to be an obscure form of Irish dialect, whilst one of the cast members stormed out after refusing to stop licking his plate during mealtimes.
“We had hoped to broadcast TOWIE with them chatting about stuff like Belfast, life, relationships and partying”, complained Ramirez. “Instead we filmed them last night talking about the best way to siphon diesel out a car in the pitch black without it getting on your dungarees. For two hours. Solid. And that was just the girls. It’s not going well. And they seem to be calling us all sorts of unpronounceable names, and I’ve no idea whether they’re compliments or otherwise. The language barrier’s a nightmare. What’s a ‘fecking hallion’? Any idea?”
Series consultant and local man-on-the-ground Gerard Donnelly from Dungannon, who was responsible for luring the bright lights of London to Eglish, admitted,
“Between me and you, I told the cast to act up a bit fancy for the auditions, you know, a bit la-di-da. Wee Hugh McNeice even bought himself a new pair of clogs. But I know there’s been problems. I had high hopes for wee ‘Shagger’ Devine, who’s only 21 but loves partying and fighting and going out and getting slaughtered. That would make for lively TV. But to be honest, I don’t think she was very happy with the nickname and refused to be filmed. I don’t know why”.
It is understood that Ramirez is privately drawing up a contingency plan to adapt the footage for an entirely different television concept, entitled, ‘Zombies Say The Funniest Things’.
With the news that a Canadian bird has landed in a lough in Tyrone after been forced over by storms, more people have come forward with other artefacts blown from across the Atlantic, including pensioners.
The Pacific Diver bird which was spotted in Lough Fea appears to have opened the floodgates as people now realise where the new things in their area have come from. Leo Daly, a fitter from Eglish, was one of the first to come forward with evidence:
“The news of that bird made the penny drop. Last week I went out the lift the milk one morning and I spotted two female pensioners sitting on top of my shed. I shouted for them to get down and they told me they had no idea where they were in these mad American accents. I just shrugged it off as one of those things.”
Pensioners were also spotted flying through the sky in Strabane, Newtownstewart, Sion Mills and Aghyaran. Scientist Pat Morgan explained this phenomenon:
“Old people are remarkably light and resilient. I myself have witnessed pensioners in The Moy being lifted 40-45 feet across a road on a good gusty day. In America it’s probably more common and relatives turn a blind eye to it as the elderly have an incredible homing ability when lost. 3000 miles is a long oul jaunt I suppose.”
The storm theory also solves the overnight appearance of a McDonalds with Canadians inside it in a field in Clonoe. Locals simply put it down to the unstoppable globalisation of the fast food brand until the customers finally emerged and started playing ice hockey down the Washingbay Road.
Authorities have warned locals not to be keeping any people blown over here and mysteriously claiming for dependents.
A Moy civil servant has publicly announced she will throw her husband out of the house if he continues his love affair for his Scania V8 and general ‘tang’ lifestyle. Kelly Trucker, who admits to once having a liking for life on the road, didn’t realise the extent of her husband’s love for the tang experience.
“It’s just embarrassing now. We had a Christening in Armagh to go to last week and Roger arrived in his Scania jacket, Ben Sherman shirt open to the naval with oil stains, gold necklace, brown belt, denims and his Super Hampton boots – the same clothes he slept in. This is not the silage cutter I fell in love with as a teenager. That’s just full-on tang.”
Kelly admits the breaking point came when he suggested a weekend away in Donegal.
“I was thinking he was being all romantic. As it turned out we slept in his V8 Topline on two planks and them tassel curtains blowing about with newspapers Sellotaped to the windows for privacy. Then in the middle of the night I caught him looking at a photo in his wallet. It was a newer V8 Scania with 6 spot lights, 4 spots in the visor and a side pipe. I was humilaited. I’d have felt better if it had been a woman from Eglish. If I hear ‘Friends In Low Places’ one more time….”
Roger Trucking doesn’t know what all the fuss is about:
“She’s overreacting, hi. Kelly fell for me when I cut my teeth on the grass and the magic is still there. My HGV licence changes nothing. She used to love the R620 flat out to the wire on the Armagh Road doing drops in Newry. Jaysus she can pull high, hi. Now I’ve the V8 and she’s all jealous like.”
Kelly has given Roger 48 hours to ditch the V8 and dress like a normal Moy man.
The world-renowned author J K Rowling is close to purchasing the whole of County Tyrone as a Christmas present to Scottish actor Robbie Coltrane, as a thank you for playing the part of Hagrid the giant, in the Harry Potter series.
The author, estimated to be worth a staggering £10 billion, decided to splash out once she had made the choice between snapping up the County, the new Peter Andre album, or a signed picture of Malachi Cush.
“I’ve always loved Tyrone”, said the author, “I was going to keep it for myself and use it as a sort of garden feature, but I know Robbie will be thrilled to have it instead. But he lives in London, so I’m going to have my people fly it over so it sits somewhere just outside Surrey. I’m sure Tyrone people won’t mind. It is a little island off the east coast of Scotland, isn’t it?”
The purchase, believed to run into a four-figure sum, came as welcome news to cash-strapped Tyrone council management.
“This is mighty”, said local Councillor Enda McMann. “We’re up to our arses in debt and this is a class way of helping out the County. Jaysus, we were nearly having to auction off the Council’s Philomena memorabilia collection. Imagine that? As it is, we’ve had to sell the Council’s fleet of chauffeur-driven Lamborghinis. Yep, it’s that bad. We might have to sell a couple of the yachts next”.
The news was greeted warmly by many residents. Benny Sloan from Caledon said,
“I’ve always been a big Harry Potter fan. Them fillums where he says, ‘Are you feelin’ lucky punk’ and then shoots up the place is pure class. I love Clint Eastwood. If Robbie gets Tyrone, maybe Clint’ll get Armagh”.
However, not everyone was happy. 57-year old Oonagh Trainor from Eglish said,
“This spells disaster. Literally. What if them Dementor boys turn up, eh? Do you know what they are? I’ll tell yiz. They’re among the foulest creatures to walk this earth, that’s what they are. They feed off human happiness and create depression and despair to anyone near them. How would we tell them apart from some of the ones from Stewartstown?”
The purchase of the County is to remain a secret from Coltrane until Christmas Day, during which time Rowling plans to either wrap it in 1,300 square miles of Christmas paper, or alternatively cover it with a gigantic cloak of invisibility.
A furore has broken out in a local primary school following ‘creative differences’ between a parent and the headmaster.
32-year old Gareth Hughes said his 6-year old son Rory had been promised by the head of St Mary’s Primary School in Eglish that he would be the star of the 20-minute nativity play to be staged tomorrow, only to find out that his son was in fact quite literally playing the role of the Star of Bethlehem, which was followed by the wise men.
“It’s a disgrace”, declared Hughes. “I was expecting my cub to be all over the centre pages of the Dungannon Observer as Joseph, looking all cute in one of thon big black and white picters. It’s hardly going to happen now that all he has to do is stand there with a big torch. We even bought a brand new dishcloth to use as his headdress. Thon school owes me 89p. I’ll bet Daniel Radcliffe didn’t have to put up with this shite when he was doing Harry Potter”.
Hughes insisted that Rory would not participate at all unless he was given a more prominent role in the show.
“We can’t”, said headmaster Padraig Boyle. “All the parts have been cast except for a sheep, a donkey, and the baby Jesus. Rory’s a big bruiser of a thing, and he’s not the sharpest tool in the box. We tried him out as one of the wise men but it was a shocking piece of mis-casting, bless him. And he’s twice the size of Joseph so he can hardly be Jesus, can he? He’d break the buckin’ crib. He’d be better off putting a plank on his head and playing the stable”.
The stand-off was only settled when Boyle agreed to the introduction of the controversial role of ‘Mutant Ninja Wise Man’, who brings with him the gift of bubble mixture.
“At such short notice Rory’s Mutant Ninja Turtle outfit is the only costume he could come up with. At least it’s Michelangelo, so I suppose there’s a biblical connection”, said Boyle doubtfully.
The precedent however opened the floodgates with other parents now demanding a change in roles for their offspring, including one bewildered mother insisting that her son changes from the role of ‘Innkeeper’s dog’, to either the Scarecrow or the Tin Man.
A growing number of residents across Tyrone are making official complaints to mobile phone companies following the news that mobile phone coverage is steadily increasing and now covers 96% of the County.
“It’s tara”, grumbled 28 year old Ernest Johnson, an auto-pilot from Carrickmore. “My house was a blackspot for years. It was class. It gave me a great excuse not to call people back or to tell them I hadn’t picked up their voicemail. Now I’ve got no defence”.
Similar complaints have been made by other phone users, in particular about the former blackspot outside between Craigavon and Dungannon on the A4 which now has excellent coverage.
“It’s cat”, said Orla Milligan, a levitationist from Aughabrack. “I used to be able to time it nicely so that after five minutes on the phone to my ma I’d get cut off. Now I have to pretend and start shouting, ‘I’m going into a tunnel’. There’s no buckin’ tunnels there. The least them ‘uns at Vodafone can do is build one to help me out”.
Siobhan Fox, a panda trainer from Eglish, agreed.
“Round these parts we’re used to ending every call with ‘Hello?’ being yelled down the phone half a dozen times. This improved coverage isn’t good enough. I was on the phone to my brother for nearly an hour last night. Jaysus, that man talks shite. I ended up putting him on mute because a repeat of Lesser Spotted Ulster was coming on. Some handlin”.
One resident, Frank Cassidy, a part-time thief from Omagh, took matters into his own hands.
“Thon phone boys are cunning. They make these mobile phone masts to look like trees so you can’t notice them, but I’m wise to that. So I took a chainsaw to three of them up the Dooish Mountain. Huge feckers, about a 200 foot high. Turns out they were real trees after all. Come to think of it, they did look dead realistic”.
The Tyrone Society of Pub Quizmasters, which has 60,000 members, are staging a rally in Coalisland on Saturday to protest that people can now cheat at pub quizzes by sneakily Googling the answers under the table.
A husband’s annual Halloween joke of telling his wife, ‘I see you’ve put your mask on early this year!’ backfired yesterday lunchtime when he found himself with a bowl of strawberry-flavoured Angel Delight poured over his head.
Long-suffering wife 52-year old Patricia Faloon said that she had simply had enough of husband John Joe’s barbed Halloween jokes over the course of their 32-year marriage.
“Every year it’s the same buckin’ jokes. I’m fed up with it. Something just snapped and the Angel Delight went over his thick head. He’s lucky he didn’t get the electric whisk shoved into his bake an’ all. He’d have known all about it then”.
Tension had been brewing since the return journey from chapel on Sunday when John Joe saw a black cat crossing the path of the car, at which point he turned to his wife and asked, “Is that yours?” before braying with laughter at his own joke.
Ah come on, it’s just a wee bit of fun”, said a defensive Faloon, a 55-year old wellington washer from Eglish. “Pat’s a right pishmire just now, bless her. She’s a very private person, but I’m sure she won’t mind me telling you she’s going through the change just now and she’s dead touchy all the time. And her piles aren’t helping”.
Other comments usually repeated by Faloon to his wife at this time of year include, “It’s Halloween. Mind no-one pinches yer broomstick”, a comment about apple bobbing, and a risqué joke about a goblin. A grinning Faloon said, “Aw, it’s mighty craic boys. And then after Halloween it’s Christmas, and I can do all my jokes about Santa and balls on the tree and all. But listen though – ‘Is that your cat!’ Class hi!”
“If I hear another broomstick joke he’ll get one shoved up his arse”, said a testy Patricia. “See if he’s laughing then”.
As of 5.30pm this evening, Faloon was contemplating whether or not to make a joke about Pat’s big pumpkins.
A teacher at a school in Eglish has become the county’s first to achieve a full-scale breakdown this year, barely a fortnight into the new school term, accusing the pupils of sustained codology.
It took the GCSE science class only 8 school days to wear down Master Docherty who teaches science and biology at St Roger’s Secondary School in Eglish, to phone in long-term sick, a record in the county and possibly the whole of Ulster. The previous record in the county was 4 weeks achieved by a female Killyman teacher who bulldozed a bus shelter during break time, singing ‘School’s Out For Summer’ in Irish.
Pupil antics included making ‘yeooooo’ sounds when his back was turned, sticking notes on his back saying ‘I’m a oul glipe’ and nailing a trout to the underside of his table, leaving a horrible stench for five days.
46-year old Docherty, reportedly instructed pupils during Tuesday’s biology lesson to, “quietly read the four chapters on ‘Plants and their Properties’ and to do so without asking any questions or making any noise whatsoever or I’ll take the heads clean off yis all”, before putting his own head down on the desk for the remainder of the lesson without looking up. Unconfirmed reports said that quiet sobbing could be heard from behind the desk. He was later seen wandering about the school grounds without shoes.
“He cited ‘heavy flu’ in his sick note, but we all know what that means”, said school headmaster Padraig Boyle with a wink. “If flu symptoms include bursting into floods of tears, weeping about how hard it is to build your self-confidence and hiding in the storeroom, then sure, flu it is!”
He went on,
“You have to hand it to the kids. It’s a triumph, and to achieve it so quickly into the new term is testament to the commitment and perseverance of some of the pupils here at St Rogers’s. Normally they take a good few months to break a teacher, but not my lot. And he wasn’t one of thon temp teachers who are easy meat. Docherty was a seasoned professional, 15 years as a secondary school teacher. Sterling stuff from the youngsters”.
Suggestions that teachers going on long-term sick leave in record-breaking time might not necessarily be a good thing were met with perplexity by the unorthodox head.
“That’s typical of the media these days. You expect cubs to achieve something and then you knock them down once they do it. Are you wise? These youngsters have demonstrated thoughtfulness, tenacity, and persistence in working as a group to comprehensively destroy this man’s self-esteem. And you say that’s not a ‘proper’ accomplishment? Don’t forget that the challenge of getting an emotional response from teachers is even greater these days for the pupils. It has restored my faith in them anyway”.
Negotiations between Boyle and RTE for the school to appear on a new programme, ‘Educating Tyrone’, a fly on the wall documentary, have been put on hold indefinitely.
BY SHENGAS MCGLUMPHIE
Local PSNI were swiftly despatched to Costcutter’s in Eglish yesterday morning before a near-riot developed in Main Street, after nearly 3,000 people turned up to start their Christmas shopping early.
A rumour, started on Twitter, that Costcutter’s was selling Cadbury Christmas selection boxes for £1.99, rapidly went viral as the news spread like wildfire throughout the county.
One policeman, Patrick Quinn, who attended the disturbance, panted:
“I’ve not seen anything like it in Eglish since Plunkett Donaghy was rumoured to be swimming bare-torsoed in the Blackwater in 1986. I nearly had to make a couple of arrests. Grown adults acting like eejits trying to get themselves noticed by shop staff for the sake of a buckin’ selection box, shouting and screaming. I couldn’t be doing with it. It really hurt my throat. I managed to get one of the ones with the ‘Make Your Own Santa Mask’ on the back. Class”.
Anne Callaghan, a 49 year old coal miner from Mountfield, told us:
“You can’t be too careful. It’s only 110 shopping days until Christmas. I still remember the Teletubbies fiasco a year ago. I ordered Tinky Winky for my little lad and it never arrived in time. He’s now 26 and still hasn’t forgiven me. I’m not going through that again”.
A spokesperson for the Omagh-based lobbying group ‘No Christmas Until Christmas’ which is continuing to gather support under its website, http://www.its-not-even-december-yet-for-fecks-sake.com, said,
“It’s this sort of behaviour that puts the ‘Jesus Christ’ into Christmas, and I don’t mean in a good way. Summer’s barely over and people are mad for Christmas already. And these shops aren’t helping. I don’t want to be walking round Asda with my shorts on, listening to buckin’ Jingle Bells. This is all Joe Brolly’s fault. Probably”.
Costcutter’s have release a statement telling people not to panic, and that there will be ample selection boxes available for sale over the next three months.
“Aye, right”, said a despondent John Joe Slane, a 60 year old egg-boiler from Aughabrack. “Try telling that to my three nephews. All they’ve got to look forward to is two packets of Fishermen’s Friends and some Lockets. That’s all they had left by the time I got there. It’s dung. Maybe they’ll all have really bad colds by Christmas”, he added hopefully.
Minor skirmishes were also reported in a Centra shop in Cabragh, following rumours that it had started selling Easter eggs.
A man from Eglish finally succumbed to the relentless march of progress and bought a CD player on Saturday afternoon in Dungannon.
“I’ve always been an early adapter with all the new technologies, and buy stuff just as they come onto the market”, said Terry Malloy, an astro-physicist from Eglish. “I was one of the first to buy a fax machine about three years ago and you still don’t see very many of them about. I’ve always loved vinyl but now it’s time to embrace the modern world, and this Amstrad CD player is a beauty”.
Malloy bought the Amstrad CD430 stereo system for £35 from Johnny Skinner’s hardware shop in Dungannon, which comes complete with a twin-deck tape recorder.
“Two tape recorders, not just one!” said a proud Malloy. “So I can tape the CDs and then play them on my Walkman when I’m in the lab smashing photons into each other. Did you know that it’s got something on it called ‘Shuffle’? I know what you’re thinkin’. But it’s nothing to do with playing cards. It’s hard to explain, but it’s like putting all the songs that were in one order into a different order but not the same different order every time but a different different order. I’m still getting my head round it”, admitted Malloy, shaking his head in wonder. “Everyone will have one of these soon”, he predicted. “Well, maybe not them ones in Greencastle”.
Malloy’s first foray into the CD market was the purchase of Daniel O’Donnell’s ‘Moon Over Ireland’ album. Unfortunately, he got so excited about hearing the Donegal pensioner-botherer, the CD got badly scratched when Malloy got confused and tried to play it on his old record deck.
“Fitting 70 minutes of music onto this wee disc thing is deadly”, enthused Malloy. “In like a hundred years, they might find a way of squeezing maybe 2 hours onto it, but I’m not holding my breath. Jaysus, it would be like something out of Doctor Who or Space 1999”