Parishes across the county have been warned to expect ‘droves’ of lapsed worshippers returning to Mass this Sunday, just hours before the Euro final between Italy and England. The Vatican have asked priests to turn a blind eye to those who don’t know the new rules about sitting, standing and genuflecting.
Already, several complaints have been made to authorities regarding light pollution as multiple candles have been lit in most households since 11pm on Wednesday night.
Henry Campbell, a non-practising Catholic of 55 years from Beragh, admitted he has felt an undeniable urge to return to religion immediately:
“I can’t explain it. As soon as the final whistle went last night, I fell to my knees and said ‘Holy Mary, mother of God’ and just started praying. It was a magical, yet worrying feeling, like impending doom. I can’t wait to go to Mass now on Sunday. I’ll be praying like hell. Are you still allowed to talk after Communion?”
Meanwhile, three Kane families in Coalisland have urged people to stop giving them dirty looks, reiterating that they’re not related to Harry Kane in the slightest. The Maguires and Rices in Dungannon have also experienced similar social isolation in the last three weeks.
A leaked itinerary of homecoming parades if England win the World Cup has revealed that one of their first stops on the way home from Russia will be the Main Street in Cookstown.
25 years after Derry pulled the same stunt without warning after winning the All-Ireland, dentists are worried about a repeat of 1993 after they were pushed to breaking point with so many gritted teeth injuries.
Cookstown Head of Festivities Joshua Sheehy admitted they weren’t surprised at the news:
“England would be well aware of what Derry did in 1993 in Cookstown and how it mentally affected Tyronies for decades. Squints, broken teeth and a rise in cursing have been the classic side-effects to this day from seeing Brolly and Tohill blow kisses to Cookstown ones. For England to parade up the street will finish many off for good.”
The document also revealed that, if successful, the England bus will stop off at the Maxol station beside the Cohannon Inn after the Cookstown parade and will probably order cowboy suppers from PG Chips although Harry Kane just wants a sausage supper as the beans gives him wind.
Meanwhile, Omagh officials are considering erecting a big screen at Healy Park if the visit of Dublin coincides with the World Cup final if England make it. The screen will not show the game but simply be used to warn spectators not to turn on the radio or TV if Southgate’s men win, for three months.
Priests across the county were said to be rubbing their hands this morning after religious experts predicted a sharp rise in mass-going coinciding with England’s continued success in the World Cup.
In addition, over 300 cars were spotted heading in the direction of Knock as families step up their prayer ratio in the hope that Sweden play the game of their lives on Saturday.
Gortin priest Fr Mossey admitted he was delighted to see England progress last night:
“It makes no difference to me whether they’re praying for bad things to happen or not. I can see takings up £5000 this weekend in my church alone. That’ll pay for the trip to Ibiza, and the maid too.”
Candle sales were up 600% in Cookstown yesterday as families lit them during the penalty shootout and prayed to Our Lady of the Rosary of Chiquinquira in Colombia, to no avail. St Bridget of Sweden is expected to get a quare rattle over the next few days.
Meanwhile a 57-year-old man from Coalisland was chased from the town last night after letting a roar out of him when England scored the final penalty kick. Seamus Kelly admitted he forgot himself after landing a £27.50 bet because of the goal. He is reportedly currently hiding in the Bush Road heading towards Dungannon, ironically in a bush.
Inspired by the South Pacific islands at the rugby World Cup, Tyrone senior finalists Trillick have spent the last week tidying up a pre throw-in routine, hoping to nurture a sense of fear in their opponents Killyclogher.
Named ‘The Trillifandango”, the routine merges Irish dancing, rave, rap, line-dancing, jiving, and general jumping about during a 4-minute performance. Mattie Donnelly heads the dance formation after a competition to see who had the longest tongue. Lee Brennan had the shortest and will be at the very back.
Meanwhile, the Northern Ireland soccer team have sent Trillick a good luck telegram. Trillick’s last title in 1986 coincided with Northern Ireland’s last appearance at a finals tournament and were consequently twinned with each other in 1998. Unfortunately Killyclogher were twinned with the England rugby side the same year.
Want-away Liverpool winger Raheem Sterling is said to be veering towards a move to Dungannon Swifts after it emerged that the Northern Ireland Fly Fishing Association are to run trials at the Dungannon Park lake this month.
An avid fly-fisher, Sterling is reportedly seething after he was overlooked for the England fly-fishing team for the international championships later in the summer. Insiders claim he points the finger firmly at his manager Brendan Rodgers who refused to allow him to leave training early the day of the English trials.
Sterling, who has played 16 times for the England soccer team, is also said to be impressed at the new statue erection in Pomeroy ‘The Lady and the Lark‘ and sees this as a chance to settle down and have children who’ll be immersed in such local culture.
Close friend Joshua Bolt added:
“There are just so many signs now pointing towards the Swifts. The new statue in Pomeroy, the fly fishing trials, the copious parking space in the town, the vibrant anti-social element, Woolworths, the close proximity to the culturally diverse Moygashel. If there is a God, he wants Raheem at Stangmore Park, running up and down that wing against the likes of Ballinamallard. The stuff of dreams really.”
Dungannon Swifts PR trainee Jack Alad admitted the club were not sure whether to give Sterling the green light or not:
“I think this Raheem boy is reading all the great stuff about Dungannon but he needs maybe to stay a night or two over here. We’ve had them dodgy door-to-door pillow sellers recently and then the boxing session outside the Fort last week. It’s not paradise completely and maybe the Raheem boy is listening to the wrong advisers.”
Meanwhile, Sterling’s agent has tabled a motion to re-name Dungannon if he does sign for the Swifts, due to the word ‘dung’ being at the start of the name and the stick he’ll get from his England team-mates. The transfer fee is reportedly around the £50m mark and a free feed in Viscounts.
The final family yet to receive a grant have announced that a £3000 cheque arrived this morning for the upkeep of a badger sanctuary in their garden. This news means that every family in Tyrone have now received a grant for something in the last ten years, ranging from ‘keeping an eye on Lough Neagh for invaders’ to ‘looking after the Strabane Christmas Tree’.
Economic sceptic Professor Harry Brown maintains this handing out of money for anything has to stop.
“I thought I’d seen it all until I met Paddy Grant from Brocagh last week. He told me he’d received a grant for being a Grant. Then there was Mary Shackleton up near Glenelly who pocketed £5000 for speaking three words in Irish every day – ‘tá mé anseo’ (I am here). She’s originally from Plymouth in England and lives alone apart from a wild cat that visits. That’s just madness.”
Professor Brown appears to be in the minority though as several awardees came forward this morning to defend their funding. Noel McGrinn from Dromore explained:
“The professor should learn to wind his neck in and maybe research a wee bit as to why these grants are handed out. For example, I get £1500 a year for making sure I preserve a small patch of grass around my back that a local holy woman claims St Patrick urinated on during his travels across Tyrone. There were no toilets in those days so her ‘vision’ might actually be true. I think that’s money well spent by the Department of Granting and we’re preserving a small bit of Ulster culture.”
The highest award this year was for Drummurrer handy man Terence McNeill who received £30’000 for pacifying local roosters and hens by singing soothing lullabys like Humpty Dumpty and Three Blind Mice.
The creation by an Omagh housewife of an omelette that coincidentally looks ‘almost exactly like Tyrone’, is expected to take pride of place in a hastily-convened showcase at Croke Park.
44-year old Philomena McCaughey was making a two-egg cheese omelette for her husband Peader, when she noticed that it looked quite like Tyrone.
“It’s mighty. It looks almost exactly like Tyrone if you look at it sideways-on with your eyes closed a wee bit. And I had thrown on a big pile of grated Crackerbarrel that made it look just like the Sperrins, especially if the Sperrins were yellow and a bit more cheesy-looking”.
McCaughey’s husband admitted that the eggy phenomenon looked a little less like Tyrone after he devoured the south eastern part of the omelette, around Clonfeacle, whilst waiting for RTE to turn up.
“Aye, that’s true. I was as hungry as a horse because we had run out of eggs and Philomena hadn’t been to Newell Stores yet. I just had a wee corner of it though. It now looks like Aghaloo’s been wiped off the map, but sure, they won’t mind. It still looks deadly”.
He went on,
“RTE never turned up. Their loss. The very least we were expecting was Sky News and some reporters from London, or maybe some of them celebrity chefs like Jamie Olivers or Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen. In the end we just took a photo of it and stuck it in the fridge next to the Kerrygold”.
The pair have offered to stage an exhibition of the so-called ‘Omagh Omelette’ at Croke Park in place of the cancelled Garth Brooks’ concerts later this week.
“At least people would still get their money’s worth”, said Peader. “We’d have the Omelette on a big video screen and Philomena could play the spoons while I sing Friends In Low Places, so that people still think they’re getting a bit of the Brooks’ magic, while they’re looking at the Omelette. I’m some chanter once I get going. And for a lock of extra pounds I’d be happy doing a couple of matinee performances”.
In 2012 McCaughey dug up a potato in his father-in-law’s field which had an exact resemblance to England footballer Wayne Rooney, before digging up a further 200 potatoes that also had an exact resemblance to Rooney.
A Dungannon-based traffic warden has started employing the use of the ‘vanishing spray’ currently being used by referees at the Brazil World Cup, which marks where defenders have to stand during a free kick. The spray disappears after a few minutes.
32-year old Fergus Devine, who courted controversy earlier this year for frequently conducting victory dances around cars to which he had issued parking tickets, began using the spray last Saturday, firstly on cars, and latterly on pedestrians.
“You see some of them cars edging forward at the lights, waiting for green”, explained an unrepentant Devine. “That’s where my spray comes in, see? If they think they can start moving just because the light changes to amber, they can think on. Drive over my wee white line and they’ll get a ticket slapped on their windscreen pronto”.
Complaints were made not just by drivers but also by pedestrians who have attracted Devine’s attention, including Caledon’s Clodagh Rush, who was accosted by Devine coming out of Lowe Butchers on Dungannon Square on Monday. She explained,
“He stopped me and started spraying my shoes, the clift. Said he was giving me a warning because of ‘dangerous overtaking’ coming out of the shop. All I did was squeeze past Mrs Donnelly who was having trouble managing her zimmer frame and bag of mince at the same time. He made me stand there like an eejit for five minutes until the white stuff went away”.
“Aye, it’s deadly stuff is right”, proclaimed Devine. “There’s too many of them pedestrians eager to jump about the road like they own the place. It’s only me that’s allowed to do that. I’ve had the training. If they don’t want to wait for the wee green man then they risk getting my aerosol all over their tootsies. They’ve been warned”.
Asked where he had procured the spray, Devine said,
“I got it off a pal of a pal who lives in England, Wayne I think his name was. He came back from Brazil with a suitcase full of the stuff. Don’t know what he was doing over there, but apparently he said there was no way he was coming back empty-handed”.
56-year old Fergus Faloon also incurred the wrath of Devine having come out of Dungannon Library ‘without due care and attention’, by walking and eating a Twix at the same time. He now faces a ‘two-booksale ban’ at Dungannon Library, but plans to appeal.
A Dungannon butcher has received a surprise late call-up to race in this year’s Tour De France which kicks off on Saturday in England.
Kevin ‘The Blurt’ McElhatton was surprised as anyone to receive the call but is determined to see good his invitation, comparing it to being ‘called up for jury duty; there’s no way out of it these days’.
The Blurt continued:
“I don’t even remember applying to ride in it but sure what harm can it do. I’ve a Flame Red MK2 Grifter at my mother’s house and sure I’ll take a spin on her down to the lough shore and back to get the oul chains oiled up for France. That’s a good 20 mile round journey so it is.”
McElhatton, despite having chronic asthma at this time of the year, is adamant he’ll put on a good show and has urged his family and friends to watch him on Channel 4 during the competition:
“I’m not deadly into the tight bicycle lycra stuff so I’m just gonna wear a white t-shirt and my Dungannon Clarkes shorts from my last game as an Under 16 in 1991. I promise not to let anyone down and I’ll drink plenty of water and all.”
There has been a mixed response on twitter to the news with one local politician from Aughnacloy tweeting “Someone stop this man. That Grifter model has a dodgy chain. Madness.”
Meanwhile, ‘The Blurt’ confirmed his butchers will remain open during his ordeal and that there’s a great deal on turkey breasts at £12.99 at the minute.
A firm in Dromore was yesterday accused of supplying low quality grass seed to the ground-staff at Brazil’s Arena da Amazonia football ground, where the England football team will commence their World Cup campaign.
Pictures released yesterday showed the pitch looking brown, dry and sandy, after having apparently applied fertiliser which was supplied by Seamie O’Donnell of Dromore Agricultural Supplies.
The England Manager, Roy Hodgson, fumed:
“The pitch is an absolute disgrace. It’s not fit even for growing potatoes, never mind staging a world-class event. How can the nation expect us to squander chances and needlessly give away possession every few minutes if we’re playing on a sub-standard surface? I have every intention of taking the issue up directly with this man O’Donnell, just as soon as we’ve played our three games and get back to the UK a week on Wednesday”.
The product, called ‘Dromore Gro-More’, packaged and distributed in O’Donnell’s premises on Clanabogan Road, provides instructions which read, ‘Simply sprinkle your seed all over the grass, stand back and watch! Deadly! Before your very eyes a lush and verdant landscape will appear – perfect for barbeques, cattle, diffing, and international
sporting competitions watched by millions. Easy to use, with no need to lock up pets or put the wee’ans in the house when you’re using it. Apply wearing a gas mask and separate oxygen supply’.
An irate O’Donnell was, however, quick to respond.
“That Hodgson’s got a damned cheek”, he said angrily. “No good for potatoes? Why is he going to have Wayne Rooney playing on it then? You could mistake that boy for a Maris Piper any day of the week. My grass feed is the best in the business”.
However, sources near Dungannon have suggested that the ‘high quality bio-stimulants’ that O’Donnell purports to use for the feed are actually just bags of sand that O’Donnell lifted from the beach at Bundoran at Easter.
Meanwhile, officials in Brazil this morning confirmed that in desperation groundsmen are applying a coat of green ‘paint’ to the pitch, which was apparently supplied ‘on the cheap’ by a firm in Clonoe.
A man from Loughmacrory has vowed never to step on another plane after his first venture on to an aircraft ended in him being banned by the airline.
26-year old farmer Conor Allen from Loughmacrory was embarking on his first flight to a tractor convention in England flying with Aer Lingus from Belfast City, when he became convinced that a full-scale emergency was underway.
“I’m tellin’ ye, it was terrifying hi. We were all sitting there in our seats quite the thing, lookin’ at the view out the windows and suchlike and then the wummin comes on the loudspeaker yolk all urgent-soundin’, telling us to get our seatbelts on. Jays, my life flashed in front of me. I thought we’d all been sent for. I admit it, I panicked big time boys. How was I to know they say that sort of thing all the time?”
The fact that Allen was panicked by the straightforward procedural announcement by the crew was made all the more embarrassing by the fact the plane had yet to leave the ground.
A sheepish Allen said,
“Look, I had had my eyes closed, sort of shutting everything out. When I opened my eyes and looked out the window all I could see was these tiny cars away below us on the ground looking like ants. Turns out they were ants. We hadn’t taken off. Some handlin’”.
Eye witnesses say that Allen flew into a blind panic and promptly leapt out of his seat yelling, “We’re doomed, we’re all doomed”, before jumping on top of the female passenger next to him, shouting, “Come on, we’ve only a few minutes left”, whilst taking off his wellies.
Allen’s defence that it was the airline’s fault that made him lose control of his self-restraint, his miniature box of Pringles, and also his bladder, left the airline unimpressed.
“We take safety very seriously”, said a spokesperson. “We tried to calm him down with a free Twix and a can of Magner’s which didn’t work, so we just tasered him in the arse with 40,000 volts. That quietened him down a bit”
Allen said that his flying days are now over, and that if he intends to travel to England again then he’ll do so by driving all the way.
A gigantic rain cloud currently sitting over Tyrone has apologised unreservedly for dropping almost 4 million tons of rainwater on the region over the past week.
Roisin Devlin, a 3-mile long cumulonimbus cloud, who is currently moving slowly westwards over Omagh at 3,000 feet, made the apology after unexpectedly drenching thousands of unsuspecting residents on Wednesday, who appeared surprised that rain might fall in Tyrone in February.
“Ooh, I was affronted”, squeaked the enormous mass of condensed water vapour. “I thought if I could just make it over to Lough Neagh where I could do my business in comfort without bothering anyone I’d be fine, but I just couldn’t. I was bursting. I got as far as Dungannon before it all just gushed out over a six-hour period. It went all over the place. I’ve never been so embarrassed. Tara”.
The rain cloud confessed that it had not helped the situation.
“I’ve been to see a meteorologist, who was a lovely man, and he said I should cut down on the precipitation. Well, easy for him to say, but see, whenever I hover over sea water up by Donegal and all that lovely stuff starts to evaporate, I just can’t help myself stuffing myself. I’ve no willpower. And I do like coming over to Tyrone. I don’t know what it is about the county, but every time I’m there I just seem to get really full and bloated and before I know it I’ve just lost control. Maybe it’s an age thing, once you get to a certain time of life. I am two months old after all”.
The cloud went on to confide,
“I’ve also been very windy recently. I’m a slave to it. I think it might be hereditary because my grandfather used to be a grade one typhoon in the mid-west in Americay. That’s who I get it from. And I have a cousin over in the south of England at the moment, and he’s even worse. Just can’t keep it in”. The cloud went on, “And do you know, it doesn’t help having a fear for heights. You try looking down from 3,000 feet and see what it does to your waterworks”.
The cloud is currently in a relationship with a bank of fog near Drumquin.
Top secret papers were today discovered in a bin near the Washingbay which suggest that a 100-year campaign of manufactured romances, courtships and marriages has resulted in 99% of children born in Derrylaughan having the perfect physical characteristics for stooling turf.
Although not as severe as the US and Nazi methods of ‘eugenics’ over 100 years ago which saw the sterilisation of people they thought were ‘weak’, it is clear that men or women who did not have good long arms and curved back for the bog had their romances sabotaged by all manner of skulduggery.
Susie McAliskey, a 67 year old spinster who now lives in California, claims it all makes sense now:
“Even though I was the prettiest girl in the area, I never seemed to be able to get a man. Any time I did a bit of flirting down at the club or in Falls’ Bar, the lad would mysteriously go home or disappear for a year or two. It happened nearly every time. One fella even told me he couldn’t go out with me as he heard I had a big moustache. I told him to look at me sure I had the smoothest skin in Ireland. He just ran away. Now I know that ‘the lads’ were sabotaging my chances by having a word in the ear of any potential suitors. All because I hadn’t the perfect features for stooling turf.”
The secret papers reveal that parents were asked to identify children who weren’t good at stooling so that the Derrylaughan Betterment Committee could keep an eye that they didn’t strike up any courtships within the townland. Suspected Ex-committee member Barney Taggert claims it’s an exaggeration.
“The fact that nearly every child born here has the perfectly bent spine and long arms is simply down to the diet here of pollans and cabbage. Nothing sinister there. Susie McAliskey did have a moustache by the way. It was blonde so it was mostly camouflaged.”
The documents have been passed on to the United Nations who have reiterated they’re not afraid to send in troops to stop this practice.
Early reports suggest that almost three thousand 18-20 year olds with straight backs and normal arms were ‘encouraged’ to leave Derrylaughan, settling in England, Australia, USA or closer to Coalisland since 1920.
The PSNI were forced to respond yesterday to allegations that the extra police drafted in to the county for the G8 summit in Enniskillen have been so bored that they have resorted to playing children’s games and making preposterous allegations against residents.
The claims come following the arrest of Joe McElduff of Cappagh, who was lifted on Sunday evening on a charge of attempted arson whilst trying to light a barbeque in his garden in the rain. A number of what the police called ‘strange-smelling items’ were also removed from his property that subsequently turned out to be some burgers he had bought from Aldi in Dungannon. He was later released without charge.
On Monday, twenty-nine cattle were detained in a field near Benburb for four hours by over 200 officers in a controversial practice known as ‘kettling’, on the grounds that they were ‘acting suspiciously’ and ‘loitering with intent’, whilst a woman having lunch in Askin’s in Ballygawley was cautioned for ‘eating without due care and attention’ after she dribbled some mayonnaise down her chin.
Other people have claimed that a county-wide game of policeman hide and seek is underway, which is why officers are spending so much time parked on top of bridges and key access points across the county, as they try to spot colleagues who are in hiding in ditches, barns and fields.
DI Sean Robertson of the PSNI refuted the claims, saying,
“The PSNI and our mutual colleagues from across the water offer the highest standards of professionalism, a level that is demanded to protect some of the world’s leaders”.
The G8 is being policed by 4,400 PSNI officers together with some 3,600 who have been drafted in from England.
“These ridiculous claims that there’s some sort of childish game going on is a complete fabrication”,
whispered Robertson, from half-way up a tree in a field near Clogher.
Meanwhile 76-year old farmer Finbar Kerr from Plumbridge was stopped for allegedly speeding at over 80 miles per hour in a 1976 Massy Ferguson tractor and link box, whilst going from one field to another.
“80 miles an hour?” said a peeved Kerr. “That thing wouldn’t do 80 miles an hour if you pushed it off a cliff. Them police have nothing to do all day but sit. I have 3,000 litres of dirty diesel sitting out the back in a tank and they never so much much as looked at it. Call themselves policemen?”
“We’re here to do an important job”, said DI Joseph Bruce of the Yorkshire Constabulary. “There are dangerous criminals about and it’s our job to catch them. Which, if they’re as good as hiding as the PSNI, may take some time”.
Despite three years at UUC studying Media and Journalism, Coalisland’s great TV hope Henry Savage was given his P45 after one day presenting the weather on obscure Sky channel Horse And Country HD. Savage was said to be distraught tonight having to deal with his first major failure in life after achieving seven GCSEs (2A, 2B, 3C) and three A Levels (BCD). Horse And Country HD issued a statement this evening explaining the sudden departure of the Brackaville Road presenter:
“It was a simple issue of translation. Although warned beforehand by our Maghery floor-mopper that the Tyrone accent was the least TV-friendly brogue out there, we were impressed at Savage’s educational background. He got a B in his 11+ back in 1986. Yet we had to let him go after our phoneline almost melted with complaints after his one and only weather presentation. When he said ‘I doubt it’ll be heavy rain for England today’, the nation assumed he was telling them it wouldn’t be raining beyond a light drizzle. Little did we know that in Coalisland ‘I doubt it will rain’ means ‘it’ll be raining, in my opinion’. You understand the difficulty we have in interpreting his predictions. Seventeen t-shirt wearing pensioners were admitted to a local A&E in Kent having been caught out in torrential rain following Henry’s advice, with three having suspected hyperthermia.”
Calls also swamped the network when Savage warned the viewers that they’d be ‘foundered’ if they ‘headed out’ as it’d be ‘tara’. Unable to find those words in the dictionary, many viewers refused to leave their houses for fear of some type of climatic disaster. Two men were sacked from their jobs for failing to turn up after Henry’s advice and are demanding compensation.
Savage says he’ll continue to pursue his dream of being a TV presenter but will start mixing with people from Edendork or Donaghmore in order to widen his vocabulary.