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.
- The controversial plans to bring time forward in the Republic of Ireland have reportedly left Stewartstown residents furious. Retired teacher Johnny Fee, wearing an A-Team jumper, remarked “We’re still trying to catch up with 2014 and now this happens. How will we ever get out of 1983 at this rate?”
- Augher woman Hillary Frank plans to make good the changes to the Republic’s new time by watching the RTE Lotto in Tyrone and then scooting across the border, losing an hour in the process and arriving before the draw has happened in the south, to bet on the magic six numbers.
- Clonoe have decided to put an end to the general downcast mood on show in the area since the senior team bowed out of the Championship by bringing Christmas forward to December 3rd to give people something to look forward to. PP Fr Fay has also promised to make masses shorter and have good looking Eucharistic Ministers in order to raise spirits.
- Omagh teacher Carlito McCabe has been awarded a £3000 grant to go towards his research into why so many Tyrone men are bald by the age of 25. His lab at Queen’s University has already operated on 18 bald Tyrone men with results inconclusive so far though some early signs hinting at midges, eels and brown sauce as possible causes.
- Derrytresk GFC, who cannot represent Tyrone if they win the Junior title this year, are considering finding a way around the ban by changing their name. Early suggestions include Hanna Hill, Fitzgerald Fighting Cocks and Little Italy.
- Galbally have registered their anger at tripadvisor.co.uk after someone was allowed to write ‘Crap. Don’t go near this place. A hellhole’ on the Galbally page, their first ever comment. To add salt to the wound, the comment was made by someone with the username ‘kildresswolfetonesabu’.
- Sion Mills entrepreneur Sammy Gibson has shelved his plans to create ‘Google Underpants’ where you control the computer screen by moving your pants about. Early tests indicated it just looked wrong in places such as libraries and schools.
There was great excitement today in amongst Ulster’s Muslims after it was revealed that Edendork parish have decided to offer the Hall entirely to the Muslim community from September onwards, as long as they play bingo in it at least once a month.
Following the recent controversies in Belfast and the ill-judged remarks from pastors and politicians, the 4,000 strong Muslim community have been looking for a community centre for general cultural gatherings. The hall, which was once described as ‘a little piece of Italy in Tyrone’ by someone, will also double up as a Mosque. The chance to clean up with grants was a deciding factor in the decision.
Dungannon Muslim, Hous Bin Pharteen, was ecstatic at the news:
“This is deadly. We were hiring out a disused shed around the back of the defunct Tyrone Brick for praying and stuff but this moves us into view for the whole of the province. It’s such a beautiful building. Those who say it’s the ugliest structure in Ireland are slabbers.”
Opposition to the Mosque has come from nearby engineering firm Hurson and Sons. Company CEO Jimmy Hurson predicts issues over a work-shy workforce at his clay-making business 500 yards from the hall:
“Don’t get me wrong. I think Muslims are a great bunch of lads. However, my workers will only pretend get confused when the adhān (Muslim call to prayer) is played by that boy in the trumpet. To get one tae break a day is plentiful. I can see these boys, mostly from Coalisland and Clonoe, bringing in 10 lunches and downing tools every time the bugle is sounded.”
After it was pointed out that the call to prayer is recited, probably by loudspeaker, and not played on a musical instrument, Hurson remained doubtful:
“Anyway, with the adhān to be played 5 times a day, I fear my workers will suddenly become Muslims in order to skive off work. They’ll find a way to screw me. I know them.”
Local residents have been assured that if they send one of the Muslims to McCann’s shop for a packet of Paris Buns or a Knutty Krust, the correct change will come back as predicted by First Minister Peter Robinson.
There are also high hopes South Tyrone Hospital may reopen due to the predicted influx of doctors and surgeons into mid-Ulster.
An Italian cyclist, who arrived in Ireland this week to attempt a dry run of the Irish leg of Giro d’Italia later in the year, became the unlucky recipient of Coalisland’s first parking ticket during a shopping trip in the town today.
Giovanni Sherri (28) was told by the warden that his bike was badly parked up against a wall outside Dorman’s Pharmacy and was issued with a £60 on the spot fine as well as a verbal warning about future conduct by warden Joe Quinn from the town himself.
Bystander and local man Kieran Corr (64) saw the whole incident pan out:
“I had just been saying to myself that the bike was badly parked. It had only the handlebar against the wall, instead of both wheels and the seat too. It was an accident waiting to happen. Thank God that traffic warden appeared out of nowhere and saved the day. We in Coalisland pride ourselves on our perfect parking tradition. How would he like it if we went to Italy and made spaghetti out of bits of string? Local customs must be upheld.”
Corr refuted suggestions that a spoof warden was used to get the media off their backs due to their suspiciously clear record. There were also reports of the warden Quinn buying a round of drinks in O’Neill’s later:
“Nonsense. OK, he was a local lad but he has an official yellow jacket, clipboard and ticket book. “
Meanwhile, Sherri admitted he enjoyed his time touring Tyrone and especially liked Stewartstown, describing it as ‘like something from 100 years ago’.
“I even met my far out relatives, the original McSherrys, who emigrated to Italy in the 1600s because they liked ice cream, meatballs, the mafia and fighting lions.”
He later admitted he wouldn’t be back.
Following the news that the Moy Park brand will be seen by millions at this year’s World Cup, the Tyrone Tourism Board have sent leaflets around every house in the Moy area including Blackwatertown and Benburb, asking them to tidy themselves up a bit ‘for the love of God’.
Henry Bogue, tourism chairman and fashion aficionado, reckons thousands will descend on the Moy in the aftermath of the World Cup to see for themselves how tasty these chickens are in their home town:
“If my calculations are remotely accurate, I forecast we’ll witness Nigerians, Albanians, Canadians, Bolivians and so on arriving by the boatload from July onwards to taste our lovely chickens. It’ll be like people going to Italy for pizza or France for wine. Everyone will be talking about Moy Park at this World Cup and we need to get the message out that we’re not just a place with swings and slides and stuff.”
Bogue maintains the hard work starts now to get the place looking well, starting with the locals:
“We’ve applied for European Funding for free Botox, facial surgery, liposuction and hair implants to be offered to anyone within a 2-mile radius of the village. We’ve also contacted Gok Wan, Loose Women, Ralph Lauren and Donaghmore people to see if they’ll offer some fashion advice to those most in need. Jean dungarees are not the look we want to project across the planet.”
Local footballer Pibil Jordan is adamant they can change:
“We’re up to the challenge. Last week I had a do to go to in Dublin and I washed like mad that morning. People said I looked deadly and my nails were completely clean. If I can do this without funding, imagine how we’ll look with a lock of pounds thrown at us. Anyway, should this not be about Moygashel?”
Meanwhile, Baracuda Fishing Tackle in Dungannon have denied rumours they are to sponsor Man Utd from 2016 onwards.
Figures released today indicate that MOT inspectors from various inspection garages across Tyrone are amongst the richest people in Europe, rivalling royalty, Formula One owners and international footballers in terms of take-home pay. The controversial statistics come as no surprise to car owners across the county as evidenced by their attitude towards MOT inspectors.
Paddy Hanna, a Brackaville kite-maker, told us:
“Sure couldn’t I have told you that myself. I was failed last week in the MOT centre in Cookstown for having a dirty wing mirror. I took it back yesterday having washed it and he failed me again for having a car park sticker on the wing mirror that was under the dirt last week. Theiving hoors.”
The Italian newspaper El Papar listed three MOT inspectors from Omagh in category 1, earning anything up to £2m a year after tax. Henry Davidson from Drumragh reckoned that was a conservative sum:
“It’s no secret that these men and women are taking backhanders. I see boys winking and bringing through fleets of old Lithuanian motors, and then handing over a brown envelope. The cars drive straight through and come out the other side within 5 seconds. No stopping. Just a line of continuous traffic. And there’s me watching my car getting jerked all over the shop and failing on an air freshener or something. We’re some mugs.”
The Tyrone MOT Union Rep said boys like Davidson need to be careful about making allegations like that about envelopes:
“We’re as clean as you can get. He has probably seen registrations documents passed over or lunches from mummies or something. We’re just tightening up on the whole dirt thing. Some of the cars knocking about are just balls of muck with an engine in it.”
The next richest group from the county were the water filter sellers from the 80s.
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.