Unicorns, leprechauns, dinosaurs and Finn McCool are still considered as daily threats in Aghyaran after government researchers admitted there has never been Internet coverage in the area since it was bought into the rest of Tyrone by Powerscreen in 1999.
In addition, 98% of Aghyarians still believe the earth is flat and that rain only happens when God is sad. Local headmaster and newspaper reader Master Redmond revealed there is a real need for investment in the area after the recent lunar eclipse witnessed families packing the cars and heading for Strabane in panic:
“Since Powerscreen bought the Internet for this part of the world, many newspapers and encyclopaedia stopped making new material as everything is apparently online now. Well, that has been no good to the people of Aghyaran and it’s a constant struggle in the community to keep people abreast of what is going on. If you inform someone of, say, the International Space Station, people just call you a slabber or ‘away in the head’.”
Aghyaran butcher and local historian Kevin Cutter (66) voiced concerns about the introduction of the Internet and maintains it needs to be slowly drip-fed into the area:
“If someone buys the Internet into this area and all of a sudden we’re told that smoking isn’t good for you or that you can’t get pregnant from kissing, then people will just be fainting and stuff from the sudden wave of revelations. It needs to be fed slowly, maybe starting with the likelihood that banshees are probably made up and take it from there. The bru man is real isn’t he?”
BT and O2 revealed they have no plans to improve their coverage in the Aghyaran area as ‘they’re used to not having it anyway’.
The general Ardboe district was recently slated in an English newspaper as the worst place in Europe for a WiFi connection, blaming the interference from electric eels which swim perilously close to Lough Neagh’s western shore.
‘Free Wifi’ posters emerged on lamp posts all week, encouraging locals to attend a mass rally outside McGuigan’s pub. Over 5000 made their way to the meeting point, many with banners which seem to point to a bit of confusion surrounding the burning issue. Johnny Farrell, who travelled hundreds of miles from Coalisland, told us:
“Listen, I admit I haven’t read up on this. I don’t know who this WiFi boy is or why he’s being held captive but I’m all on for freedom of speech. I don’t care what he has supposedly done so I say ‘FREE WIFI’ yiz shower of tyrannical bastards. Set WiFi free….”
…before starting a ‘We Shall Overcome‘ singsong and firing a brick at a police car which was monitoring proceedings.
Tensions rose after a BT Telecoms representative turned up and tried to explain the reasons for the lack of free WiFi in the area. Frank Busby was drowned out with chants of ‘WiFi – inside for something he didn’t do‘ and ‘Internment is cat‘ before leaving the podium to choruses of ‘cheerio‘ and ‘who are ya‘.
Organiser Jackie Cullen admitted:
“It’s my fault. I didn’t explain the rally well enough to the people. Let me say it loud and clear now to the people of Ardboe – WiFi is a wireless internet service, not a local lad interned for his political beliefs.’
Cullen was subsequently chased from his own rally with cries of ‘traitor‘ and ‘you’re one of them‘ from the increasing number of protesters.
Seven bonfires were currently alight as over 9000 prepared for a midnight vigil singing ‘Something Inside So Strong’.
A habit, once thought to be nearing extinction in Ireland, has reportedly gathered legs again as the amount of women fixing their hair before answering their mobile phones or landlines is on the rise.
In a sign of the times, the activity has evolved with many women taking selfies before lifting the receiver or pressing answer on their devices. Ballygawley teacher John Kelly confirmed they have missed three important calls to the house recently because of his wife adjusting her extensions before answering the call:
“I’m a sub-teacher at the minute and rely on calls in the morning for a livelihood. Three times this week the phone has run off because I’ve been in the toilet and Mary’s been checking her hair in the mirror. Last week I saw her taking a photo of herself when the phone began ringing. Not only that, she took another one because the first one wasn’t to her liking. This madness must stop. It makes no sense.”
86-year old widow Hillary Johnson from Omagh has lambasted the young women of today in terms of the time taken to make sure they are fit to answer the phone.
“In my day, we would have leapt up and checked hair, make-up and blouse before the second ring. By the fourth we’d have applied any changes necessary. These young ones today are too lazy and slow. I blame the Internet and them American TV shows.”
Other traditional female actions reportedly fashionable again are blue-rinse dyes and wearing tabards with 20-30 nappy pins attached.
A lack of communication between a husband and wife in Ardboe resulted in a man successfully purchasing his own house on the internet.
Gerard and Patricia Cush had been considering down-sizing their home in Ardboe to something smaller in the nearby vicinity, when 56-year old Gerard Cush made a bid after spotting what he believed was the house of his dreams advertised on-line. However, the ‘property of a lifetime’ he had unwittingly stumbled upon was actually his own house that his wife had added to the intranet the day before.
“I saw this deadly house for sale in the ‘much sought-after up-and-coming west end of Ardboe’”, said Cush. “ Well, I didn’t know where that was, but it sounded quare”. He went on to explain how he was caught out because there were no exterior photographs of the property. “Aye, Pat’s no fool. She put in the ad that internal viewing was recommended, because to be frank the house looks feckin’ awful from the outside. The house is gradually subsiding into the Lough. We’ve practically got ducks swimming around the bed. So you see I only saw the inside photos”.
He went on, “But even then, I didn’t recognise the place. Jays, the wife had done some amount of tidying up. Last time I saw the kitchen work surface as clean as that was the day it went in. And the bathroom looked amazin’ hi. She must have got rid of that big pile of toe nail clippings that was on the windowsill. To be fair it was starting to block out the sunlight. And I never even knew the toilet was white until I saw them photos. It was glistening”.
Patricia admitted that she had to take some considerable licence when describing the property.
“Well ,that’s as maybe, but it doesn’t forgive that buck eejit from buying his own damn house. Clean work surface in the kitchen? What does he know about it? He never goes in there. Anyway, I suppose I did go over the top a bit, but that’s what everyone does”. She went on, “I had said it had four bedrooms, even although the fourth one is really the airing cupboard. Quite a small one at that. And ‘genuine water feature’ was probably taking things a bit far with all that water from the lough bubbling in through the aerial socket in the living room. Some handlin’. This whole thing’s been a complete shambles from beginning to end to be honest. In fact, a bit like our house”, she said.
A rueful Mr Cush said,
“I paid a non-refundable deposit to the website of £2,500. The advert said it was a dream home. I wish I could bloody wake up now”.
A Clonoe man, who confused the offer of Free Wifi with an invitation to get himself a Thai Bride, has been handed a 3 year suspended sentence at Dungannon Crown Court after causing £10,000 in damages at a local bar.
It is believed that Plunkett J O’Neill, 63, of O’Rahilly Gardens in the townland, entered the shebeen demanding a Thai Bride and when told several times that it’s not something they offered, proceeded to wreck the place, shouting obscenities, smashing glasses and even letting the fire extinguisher off.
Peter Duffy, solicitor for the accused stated:
“It’s a simple case of my client getting the wrong the end of the stick. He said that he was told by a neighbour that he should get up to the bar and get a Free Wife, Hi. Not knowing one iota about computers, he wanted to get up there before they ran out. If anything his fleetness of foot for a man of his age should be commended.”
Conor McNally, who was working at the bar at the time, was left shaken and confused:
“We started giving away free wi-fi in a bid to attract the sort of people that’ll pay £3 for a cup for of Mellow Birds. Next thing you know, Big Plunkett J comes stormin’ in roaring luckin about Thai Brides and Free Wives. He wouldn’t take no for answer and next thing you know there was an ashtray making its way for my head. I had no choice but to call the cops and as luck would have it they were across the road at the chippy.”
Tribulations tried to make contact with Plunkett J for a statement but were told he was away on holiday.
One of The Moy’s most adventurous business ventures closed today after the owner, Colm Mackle, admitted he was ‘sick and tired’ of explaining what surfing the net meant to confused locals. Tyrone’s first Internet Cafe was launched last month with a fanfare of sandwiches and cold drinks whilst an Apple Store employee from Benburb cut the rope around the shop. Early euphoria soon turned to resentment after Mackle became scundered with requests from patrons like ‘how does this mice yoke work’ and ‘how do you get on to the next line’.
“Ah I enjoyed the first day, seeing the faces of Moy people who thought computers could only be found in America or London. But then it began. One of the first complaints was from a young girl from the Armagh Road who said she was afraid of mice and if I could get her another animal. Men and women were talking to the screen thinking there was someone inside it. And they all seem to forget what I told them as the next day was exactly the same.”
Mackle called it a day soon after he called his first tutorial class on “How to surf the web”.
“I thought I’d educate the locals on surfing and advertised a Beginners Guide to Surfing. 30 turned up. 28 of them were wearing wetsuits, breathing apparatus and carrying a stack of towels. The other two brought dusters ‘for the webs’. What a waste of money this venture was. A centre for left-footed Aborigine Ballet would’ve had as much success as I had with this idea. The Moy ain’t ready for the Internet.”
Local actor, Tony Gribbon, reckons they’re better off without it:
“Ah sure any time I was in it I couldn’t get near it for the amount of surfers looking at videos on YouTube of people falling over or tractor diffing. I mean, it was the only site used. Then there were oul lads typing in ‘bare women’ and getting Mackle into bother.”
The entire staff of an unnamed newspaper with offices based in Omagh are facing the axe after a rebel investigative journalist uncovered a culture of hiding from the boss whilst on duty. The renegade hack, a former employee of the newspaper group in question, managed to collate video and photographic evidence of the mass skiving which will form the basis of an exclusive documentary that will be aired on mainstream TV next summer.
“Finally got the bastards,” Deckie Brogan told us, “but I wasn’t aware at the extent of it all. I caught a Stewartstown employee, laden with awards and all, and he was hiding out in the boiler house behind the car park with a mattress, pillow and mini-TV with freeview. The owners thought he was out sourcing stories on farming. He was getting them on the Internet the night before. Then there was a boy from Beragh who was hiding behind a skip in the town when he was meant to be at football matches getting reports. He’d set an alarm to go off about fifteen minutes before the the end of the working day, check the scores on Twitter and go back to the offices looking foundered for effect. It was widespread.”
Fermanagh man Brogan will also relate the story of a Derry journalist who insisted on wearing dark glasses supposedly because of the glare of the screen. He simply slept with his hands on the keyboard. An Armagh employee, who was meant to be sourcing articles on fashion trends, would leave the office at half nine, check into the Silver Berch Hotel and read the Ulster Tatler for a few hours. One of the journalists who was caught redhanded admitted:
“Ah Jeepers, I’m done for now. It’s a sad state of affairs that a private sector worker can’t hide but that’s a sign of the times. I might as well get another job that I can do a bit of skiving in. Teaching maybe.”
The newspaper are asking readers to text in their choice as to who should be sacked first. Texts cost £2.
A well-meaning Loughmacrory pensioner, Johnny McGee (72), has finally patched up marital differences after a misjudged Christmas gift left the McGee household a frosty abode for the guts of two weeks around the festive period. McGee, a retired bus driver, thought he would surprise his heavy-set wife Kitty (71) with a pair of thigh-length leather boots after he received a torrent of abuse last year for buying her a pound of mince and a hairbrush.
“You just can win with her. OK, I understand the hurt and pain I caused last year with the mince and comb thing. I thought it was practical but apparently a woman wants something that makes her feel good. Well, I was browsing through some shops in Omagh and thought they were quare warm-looking boots. At her age she needs to retain as much warmth as possible in the winter months. I thought the stud design was a bit classy. Apparently not. It was a quiet Christmas dinner I can tell you. She just slapped a few spuds on my plate and sat in the corner drinking gin til December 28th.”
Kitty, who has been battling a cake addiction since the age of 19, saw the situation differently:
“He is a dirty oul bastard. Keep me warm, my arse. Ever since he got the Internet he has been making all kinds of suggestions. In the summer he bought me a thin polo-neck and short plaided skirt. I don’t know what he’s looking at on that computer but we’re in our 70s for Jaysus sake. Leather-studded knee-length boots? I’m 16 stone. It’d be some sight trotting out to the Centra in those. I’d be the talk of Loughmacrory. The £200 refund came in handy. I bought a good commode and chewing tobacco.”
An Omagh Ann Summers staff member did admit she thought it was a bit odd to see Johnny in that shop at that age and really unusual for a punter to ask her to try them on first, which she did.