A Derrytresk stove-fitter has admitted to experiencing an unbearable level of stress in the aftermath of a £25 windfall in the weekend’s UK Lottery, forcing him to call a media conference to announce his stroke of luck.
Terence McNeill, who claims to have been on the receiving end of dirty looks since the rumour started, admitted he may move away from the area or at least go on a long holiday to Bundoran or even further.
At the press meeting near Tamnamore Roundabout, McNeill revealed how he managed to land the winnings, whilst spraying the assembled photographers with a magnum of Shloer:
“It was the numbers 1, 2 and 3 that got me the money. I always choose those numbers as I remember they were the first numbers I was taught in school. I couldn’t sleep that night but believe it or not I thought I’d won only a tenner. I didn’t know it had gone up til £25. Nearly had a heart attack when the woman handed me the money in the Spar.”
Word soon got out in the sleepy town-land of the influx of wealth, leaving McNeill feeling ‘alone’ and ‘confused’.
“I could overhear people saying things like ‘who does that hoor think he is?’ or ‘stuffy-nosed oul bollocks’ and stuff like that. Then came the beggars from the Church, the GAA club and the local gay and lesbian society. I had to call this conference to announce I’m giving nothing to anyone and for locals to respect my privacy. Just feck off.”
The Spar have cashed in on the winning ticket exposure by erecting a temporary sign with the words ‘Big Lotto Winner Bought It Here’ and putting on a 2-HP Sauce-for-1 deal.
Meanwhile, Edendork’s Jarly Hanson has fled his home after clinching the £20 snowball at Edendork Hall bingo last week.
The family of Ballygawley lottery winner Josie McGinley are said to beside themselves with worry for her after her £3000 win on the local GAA club lottery. McGinley (61), who is reported to have splashed out on plants and garden ornaments, has alarmed friends and family after repeatedly stating she doesn’t know herself at all since the windfall.
Sister and clinical psychologist Sadie McGinley reckons it’s time for social services to step in:
“I was talking to her yesterday and asked her how she was feeling after the big win. She just kept saying ‘jays I don’t know meself at all’ whilst browsing through the Littlewoods catalogue for expensive pyjamas. She either needs the money taken off her and given to her siblings or committed to some institution, with the money given to her siblings. She can’t go about not knowing herself.”
Concerns have also been raised about her husband Joe who has been spotted as ‘laughing’ whilst saying ‘she doesn’t know herself’ when asked how things were since the big win. Sadie added:
“I think he has what she has. Maybe it’s the early signs of ebola or something but he’s going about smirking and laughing about our Josie not knowing herself. If that’s what winning money does to some people they’re better off not having it at all and the winnings given to her siblings.”
Errigal Ciaran GFC released a statement indicating that they’ll monitor future payouts in their lottery and set up a winners’ counselling committee from tomorrow onwards for any wins over £50.
A local clairvoyant has given in to pressure to stop pestering the souls of the departed after numerous complaints were made via another medium.
58-year old Nuala Brannigan from Dregish has been communicating with the spirit world for 35 years, but agreed yesterday to give it up after an unprecedented number of complaints.
Niall O’Neill, an 800-year old ghost originally of Cloughfin, said,
“She’s a pain in the arse. She’s always on the ouija board asking what the football results are going to be, or the Lotto numbers. As if we know. Just last week she was wanting to know where she had put her Heat magazine, and then blaming us lot for having shifted it. Gadzooks. Can she not just leave us alone? We’re fed up with being pestered. I’ve a whole lock of haunting and ghostly rattling to be getting on with and can hardly do it with that woman bending my ear all the time. And anyway, what’s a Heat magazine? And a football?”
550-year old hangman Ezra Maguire agreed.
“In the olden days people used to enquire about loved ones they had lost or maybe the whereabouts of a sentimental family heirloom. This woman’s constantly demanding ‘horse race winners’ this, or ‘Winning Streak’ that. Anyway, what century is it?”
Conor Kendall, who died in a baking accident in 1963, told us:
“I came into limbo expecting to get a bit of peace and quiet, and it’s nothing of the sort. I’ve got a ‘ghostly haunting’ exam this Friday and I haven’t even bought any chains yet”.
The challenges of being from another world were also pointed out by Kevin the Terrible, a former Viking from Urney who died in 2009.
“It’s not easy being spooky”, he agreed. “Last night I was out working walking the ramparts near the Rock for about eight hours. Jaysus, I was foundered. Well, I would have been if it wasn’t for the fact I’m already dead. It took my ectoplasm an age to thaw out. And to cap it all I had that woman Brannigan inside my bap asking where her car keys were”.
In her defence, Brannigan replied,
“Ah, come on. All I’m after is a wee bit of information most of the time. Where’s the harm in that? It’s the only option I’ve got, because the internet signal in Dregish is rubbish so I can’t get Google. And I’m hardly going to go all the way to Dungannon library to find out how to change the sump on my washing machine if I can get it from the undead”.
The ghost world confirmed that the last straw came on Monday after Brannigan spent over an hour harassing spirits about a number of different topics, including whether Tyrone’s new A5 road extension will ever get built, what setting to use for making a Baked Alaska, and the answer to Channel 4’s Countdown conundrum.
Probing questions have been beginning to circle around the Clonoe Parish area after it emerged that no one has won the Derrylaughan lotto since its inception in 2001, even the £50 for three numbers. With last week’s winning numbers of 1,2,3 and 4 bringing the tally to 750 weeks without anyone winning more than a tenner for two numbers, punters are asking if this is the toughest lottery in the world.
Asking a £5 entry fee, the Kevin Barry’s lotto is one of the steepest in the entire country, with sellers targeting long distances from Moortown to Majorca. Ballinderry man, Jody McGuigan, summed up the current inquisitive mood:
“With the jackpot now standing at £1.3m it’s hard not to do the Derrylaughan lottery. Like, our own one is about £900 and any time someone wins it you can be sure it’s a McGuckian or a Muldoon. But there’s something funny going on down the shore. I remember reading in the bulletin once that the numbers for the Derrylaughan one was 13, 34, 41 and 66. Sure the buckin envelope only goes up to 26 numbers. I spotted it but said nothing for fear of being sent to the mad house again.”
McGuigan decided to pay a visit to Derrylaughan last Sunday to see if his suspicions were with substance. What he saw will live with him for the rest of his life.
“I went down to watch Derrylaughan play Dromore and had a sniff around. I just wish I’d taken my camera. The clubroom was akin to something you’d see in the Slieve Russell. There were butlers from Derrytresk, maids from Brocagh, a fancy reception where you were given an ash tray of nuts if you sat down at all. The toilets had golden railings and the toilet roll was some kind of velvety tissue from Japan. The car park was full of Mercs, BMWs, 2010 Nissans and boys walking around with bicycle clips on. I saw the chefs making the aftermatch meal of ‘lobster and Mousseline of pattes rouges crayfish with morel mushroom infusion’ and that was just for the away team.”
Derrylaughan Lotto committee chaiman, Michael Saggart, refused to comment and just encouraged people to keep dreaming of that £1.3m prize money before instructing his driver to bring him to somewhere that sells crowns.