Leading boffins at Queen’s University have confirmed that ‘man-cold’ can have just as equally debilitating effects as man-flu does, at any time of year.
Symptoms such as being unable to put the bin out this week and losing the ability to make a cup of tea have been cited as classic signs of mancold according to scientist Prof Barry Donnelly from Belfast:
“We’ve long suspected that man-cold can be compared to man-flu in many ways and recent observations have confirmed this. We observed three men in the early stages of a mild head cold and they displayed typical signs such as laying on the sofa feeling sorry for themselves, to shouting at the children for trivial things. In fact, being unable to do any family activities was the confirmation we needed.”
Man-cold sufferers have been advised to avoid looking for sympathy from spouses and to definitely refrain from comparing the head cold to child birth at all costs. Three man-colders suffered severe bruising in east Tyrone last week after refusing to attend a ‘Back-To-School’ information evening for parents in Moortown, citing being unwell.
Doctors have asked man-cold sufferers to drink a glass of water and to get up.
Owen Mulligan, Philip Jordan, Hub Hughes and Brian McGuigan are set to become the latest big name sporting stars to make their way to the Far East as Shanghai Emmets splashed out on all four in the hope that GAA rivals soccer as the biggest athletic attraction in China.
Early reports are sketchy but rumours suggest Mulligan, whose blonde locks are revered east of India, will be able to command upwards on £500’000 a week for the Emmets – making him comparable to the wages of Messi, Ronaldo and Roger Federer in world sport.
Killeeshil’s Kevin Hughes, whose nickname ‘Hub’ translates as ‘accurate one’ in Chinese, has reportedly spent the last week learning all the dishes in his favourite Silver Chopsticks Chinese Takeaway in Dungannon in their native language. Close friend and fellow ex-Killeeshil great Michael Hagan admitted it’s a big move for the 2003 All Ireland man-of-the-match recipient:
“It’ll be hard being away from loved ones but if Hub plays about 20 league and championship games out there, he’ll come home with around £10m tax-free. He’ll be able to buy Killeeshil and maybe a bit of Cabragh too. That’s as long as he’s not dropped.”
Jordan and McGuigan are said to be already on their way to the land of the Red Dragon in order to do a few laps at Chinese altitude. Their first game is against the Guangzhou Evergrande Pearses is due to be played in three week’s time.
Former county stars Ryan Mellon and Chris Lawn have been playing in China for over twelve months already for the Beijing Guoan St Mary’s, taking them to the Intermediate title. Due to his natural leadership tendencies, Lawn is reportedly already an Emperor, the first Moortown man to be so.
The various current O’Neill family nicknames within the county are to be phased out and replaced with sub-clan names based on general physical characteristics.
The O’Neill Lineage and Genealogy Society have agreed that many of the current nicknames are either outdated or clouded in mystery as to their origin. They are to be re-classified on the 1st of October, categorised by location. O’Neill households are to receive official documentation within a fortnight, adding that there will be no appeal procedure for any disgruntled recipients.
The following list summarises the main changes:
O’Neills from Omagh, Plumbridge, Strabane, Dromore, Gortin and Fintona and any towns and villages west of these: The big-boned O’Neills. These O’Neills have a remarkably consistent characteristic across all families – they all have large behinds. We considered calling these clans ‘The Big-Arsed O’Neills‘ but considered that to be too crude for general consumption.
O’Neills from Carrickmore, Pomeroy, Greencastle, Galbally, Aughnacloy, Ballygawley and surrounding area: The Long-Nosed O’Neills. This breed have long, pointy faces and a matching oblong noses which makes them excellent tax-collectors or traffic wardens.
O’Neills from Dungannon, Donaghmore, Brackaville, Cookstown and Coalisland: The Square-Headed O’Neills. The O’Neills from this area have distinctive square heads, often causing difficult childbirths for O’Neill mothers. They are not to be confused with the oblong O’Neills just west of this area.
O’Neills from Ardboe, Moortown, Clonoe Parish, Moy: The Yellow O’Neills. These clans have a natural tanning during the summer, often caused by their tendency to sunbathe at the Lough shore. However, over the winter, their skin turns a remarkable yellow colour and are often wrongly diagnosed with jaundice despite being perfectly healthy. We considered naming them the Banana O’Neills but that threw up too many opportunities for people to poke fun at.
Any other O’Neills not covered by the above areas are to contact the O’Neill Society for re-classification as well as providing a photo for the same purpose.
In a move that has been described as ‘severe’, 20 beauty contestants have been disqualified from the Rose of Ardboe for a range of beauty doping tactics from botox, plastic surgery and colonic irrigation to heavy make-up and spray tans.
The competition was eventually won by mother of five, Gerttude Donnelly (44) from Brocagh who defeated the only other clean competitor Mary Quinn (17) from Moortown.
Chief judge and beauty expert Paddy Forbes defended their decision:
“These women are as bad as the athletes who are off their heads on steroids and blood tampering. Our suspicions were raised at the introduction part of the competition when over a dozen women were simply unable to smile or move any part of their face at all. One woman from Ballinderry couldn’t even say her name in case her new lips cracked. It’s a disgrace.”
The panel of judges were able to access the medical reports from John Morgan, a local unofficial facial reconstruction expert in the townland, who admitted he had received heavy trade in recent weeks. Forbes added:
“We managed to strike off 15 women that way. We then appealed to the conscience of the other women left by telling them we’ll be hosing them down to see if the fake tans come off. Luckily five more women came forward leaving the two finalists. We hosed them any way.”
Rose of Tralee officials have refused to comment on the disqualifications in Ardboe but an unnamed escort revealed that his Rose was practising smiling all day and had nearly mastered it.
John Morgan has since been visited by the Benefit Fraud Bureau.
Following the news that a farmer who lit up a cigarette in his tractor could face a fine of up to £1,000 after he was deemed to be smoking in his workplace in a commercial vehicle capable of “carrying more than one person”, a 66-year old farmer from the Battery Road in Ardboe has been fined £300 on the spot for smoking a cigarette (Marlboro) whilst manoeuvring a barrow full of compost from his garden to the rampart.
Patsy Quinn, who will contest the fine, maintains it’s one rule for government ministers and another for the average Joe:
“I remember seeing McGuinness holding a barrow up with yer woman O’Neill in her and him with a Benson and Hedges drooping from his lip. There was no word of fines or the like then. Ghost oh, it’s a joke.”
Quinn will also contest the fine on the grounds that his barrow couldn’t hold any of the women in his family as they were ‘all big eaters’, negating the suggestion that it’s a two-person contraption.
Jackie Conlon also appeared before a magistrate at Cookstown Court this morning on a charge of smoking whilst in control of a donkey and cart he uses to sell eels around Moortown and Ballinderry.
Conlon (71) admitted to freely smoking a Cuban cigar on a vehicle capable of carrying ‘about 15 people’ in the back of it. On accepting the charge, an emotional Conlon added:
“Have yiz nothing better til be at like. The country’s couped.”
In a quirk of the calendar, June 21st 2015 sees Father’s Day fall on the day with the longest period of sunlight, leaving housewives across the county despondent at having to do absolutely everything around the house, as opposed to the usual 97%.
Dungannon woman and mother of 9 lively children, Lily Murphy, thought she’d witnessed it all until this morning:
“I ventured downstairs at 8 o’clock only to find Pat sitting at the kitchen table and our 5-year old shovelling Cheerios into his da’s mouth. Then, the 6-year old was using his hands to move Pat’s jaws up and down before tilting his head back to swallow. It was a savage display of laziness but today’s the day I can say nothing. He’s just sitting there and smirking and to make it worse, he’ll be like this til the sun goes down on the longest day.”
Across the county there are tales emerging of extreme cases of do-nothingness and lethargy over and beyond the norm. Clonoe 12pm Mass had to be delayed for half an hour after several families arrived late due to fathers refusing to drive the car, leaving non-driving mothers to shepherd their children up to four miles towards the church.
GAA matches have also been called off in many parts of the county with refereeing fathers refusing to blow their whistles or even running, leaving only 6 non-father officials able to take command of fixtures.
Meanwhile, police were called out to a house in Moortown this morning after a domestic argument spilled onto the main road. Neighbours reported shouting of ‘I’m mowing no fcukin lawn the day of all days’ as well as ‘every day’s a buckin father’s day to you. Thon lawn’s a jungle.‘
Slap Bladder, Fifa president, has come under fresh scrutiny after a gang of Pomeroy supporters blamed the Swiss man for inteferring in the Pomeroy/Derrytresk Intermediate championship game which saw the East Tyrone side emerge with a 4-point victory.
The Pomeroy Plunketts, who were deemed ‘unbackable’ by many bookmakers in the county, were left shellshocked after two second half goals saw The Hill progress to the quarter finals where they meet the winners of Edendork and Moortown whilst Pomeroy players safely book holidays in Ibiza and Downings.
Long time Pomeroy supporter James Kavanagh was left in no doubt as to why the result stood:
“Bladder’s hands are all over this. Why did the wind die down in the second half? Why was our player sent off for nothing? Why was the match played in Galbally? Why are there cows on the Derrytresk jerseys? These are important questions but you can be sure Bladder will pretend he knows nothing about it. A crook.”
External match-fixing investgator Kirk Forlan from Berlin admitted there may be some link between Derrytresk and the Fifa head-man.
“People have always been suspicious of why Derrytresk had the best roads in Ireland – so smooth you could iron your clothes on them. There’s money in that townland and it didn’t appear out of nowhere.”
Derrytresk PR spokesman John-Hugh McWallace denied any wrong-doings:
“People need to wise up. Yes, there is money in Derrytresk but that’s simply because we’re fairly tight. And yes, our roads are good but that is down to the beautiful aridity of this part of the world, often likened to the dry plains in southern Portugal. And finally yes, Bladder has stayed here a few times but blame the Fitzgeralds for that. He’s a third cousin, four times removed. But to say Slap had anything to do with this result is ridiculous. He wouldn’t even know where Galbally is.”
The anti-corruption agency NGO Transparency International warned Derrytresk that they’ll be sending an envoy of 32 delegates to watch the quarter-final.
Thousands of middle-aged former disco-goers will wake with a heavy heart tomorrow morning after Cookstown’s premier ballroom of romance, Clubland, permanently closed its doors on Friday night.
The Pink Pussycat, which drew millions of lurkers, drivers, drinkers and dancers every weekend since the 1980s, was reportedly once thought responsible for 71% of marriages and 92% of children born in East Tyrone during the 90s. Pope John Paul II was allegedly a fan of the venue as it kept numbers healthy in the predominately catholic areas around Ardboe and Derrylaughan.
Leo McCann (48) from Moortown remembers the Molesworth Street venue with great affection:
“Ah, I’m vexed about the closure. Every week, without fail, I’d leave the venue with a girl under my arm – usually one of the Murray sisters from up the country. The eyes would be cutting out of me from the fake smoke they’d release during the slow set but it was the same for everyone. We’d all be red-eyed, with many crying uncontrollably from the stinging sensation, not really knowing who we were courting. Great days.”
John Kirby, a 46 year old single labourer from Pomeroy who often stood in the Kildress Corner of the dance floor , recalls how important the venue was during his late teen years:
“Yes, myself and seven mates would arrive in my souped up Volkswagen Golf and we’d speed up and down Molesworth Street maybe 700 times, trying to impress the dames. Sometimes we didn’t even go in. Just drove up and down for 4 hours playing Christy Moore full pelt. I’m sad our young ones won’t experience that. And the luminous dandruff was class under them laser lights.”
The former Clubland building will be replaced by a new sausage factory reportedly run by Owen Mulligan.
Paul Quinn, who suspected his wife Alanna was not 31 as she said, came across the idea of counting her teeth whilst she slept after watching an episode of Country File which showed how farmers could estimate the age of their sheep by tallying their teeth.
A furious Quinn added:
“She has pulled the wool over my eyes. I had a fair idea she was older than 31 as she’d let a big ‘aaargghh’ out of her when she would get out of a chair or bed. So last night, whilst she slept, I got one of those surgeon lights for my head and a scalpel and sure enough, she has the teeth of a 60-65 year old. I’ve a big decision to make now.”
Quinn’s findings have placed women across the county on red alert as more suspicious men are predicted to follow the Moortown man’s lead and do some investigative work during the hours of darkness. An Ardboe child-minder told us:
“This is bad craic for us. I’m thinking of deploying mouse traps down the middle of the bed. My ma talked about super-glueing her mouth but that’s a bit mad I think.”
Meanwhile Quinn maintains he is aiming to employ a trough as a feeding destination for his 9 children after also seeing is successfully used on Country File last Sunday but rubbished rumours he is to use home-made human fertilizer for the garden.
Worzel Gummidge, a scarecrow that could come to life and lived in Ten Acre Field, was modelled on any number of men you’d find wandering aimlessly around Omagh, Killyclogher, Tattyreagh, Strabane or Dromore according to two producers who worked on the show during 1979 and 1981.
Gummidge, whose catchphrase was ‘A cup o’ tea an’ a slice o’ cake‘, was played by John Pertwee with his love interest coming from Aunt Sally acted by Una Stubbs.
In his memoir, producer Kenny Rainhome admitted:
“I was visiting cousins in Tyrone in 1978 and was amazed at the way nearly every fellow was the same as the next: black hats, straw hair, straw hands, muddied face and funny way of talking. And then they’d just be standing in fields looking about. I loved them so I thought I’d pay homage to their existence.”
The West Tyrone Preservation Society have reacted angrily to the revelation but admitted they’re not surprised:
“We’re proud of our men. And so what if they keep a lot of straw about themselves? Sure in England all the men are on drugs and wear wigs and stuff. But this does not come as big news to us. Sure wasn’t The Muppets based on the decision of the Moortown jury to award Mary Quinn from Ballinderry as Miss Wrangler Jeans 1966 when Sarah O’Neill from Brocagh had a far better chassis on her.”
There are no plans to reboot Worzel Gummidge.
NASA have yet to confirm or deny rumours that their expensive Rosetta mission may not have been as successful as first thought after word filtered through of a ‘space-like probey thing’ which has landed in a graveyard in Moortown with the words ‘NASA’ on the side of it, even though NASA had nothing to do with it..
Suspicions were heightened in Washington after the first audio signal sent back by the Philae Probe included what appeared to include high-pitched sounds including a clearly heard ‘holy smokes’ and ‘ghost-oh boys’.
Chief mourner and gravestone cleaner Maggie Quinn is in no doubt that the probe is not 300 million miles away but a few thousand km from the American capital:
“Sure I saw it with my own eyes. This thing had been hovering above the graveyard since August and we just thought it was a number of things. Some suspected it was the police keeping an eye out for any lads still on the run returning for Graveyard Sunday. Others claimed it was the bru-man or even the TV licence shower. Today it came down gently enough and to be honest we were on the verge of kicking the dung out of it.”
NASA’s description of the landscape appear to match that of Moortown, describing the conditions as ‘hostile’ and ‘like nothing on earth’.
Mrs Quinn concluded:
“I hear they’re trying to find out if water exists where it landed. Well, if they give me the word I’ll houl it up and they’ll have a deadly view of the Lough from here. If there’s something we have, it’s water. But like, they could have looked us up on the Internet instead of spending a billion dollars to come here. But I suppose them taxi boys are rip-off merchants.”
Local PP Fr Hackett has asked locals to pray for the probe which has already been kicked and shot at with an air rifle.
Despite sound-bites from the government to quell fears of a new breed of testicle-eating trouts and eels stalking Lough Neagh, swimmers and bathers along the western coastline of the lough confirmed they are still a real threat, and may be getting hungrier.
Two male swimmers from Derrylaughan, who every Saturday morning religiously partake in a short swim out to Coney Island and back to shake off hangovers, reported three attacks from three different breeds of fish during their 30-minute paddle. Kevin Barry, a 28-year old fencer, told us:
“I think that’ll be the last time I go for a dip in the lough until the problem is sorted. There’s no enjoyment when you’re constantly worried you’ll return to shore with mutilated knackers. I’ve never seen eels behave like that before, and I know my eels.”
Sunbather Harry Quinn (58) from Moortown was astonished at the attack he experienced whilst laying on a towel on the beach at the Battery. Wearing a tight-fitting pair of Moortown St Malachy’s shorts from his playing days in the early 80s, Quinn had to retreat to the pub after an unprovoked assault on Saturday:
“Ghost oh, I was just nodding off on the towel and before I know it a couple of Dollaghan were yanking the shorts off me and them 10 feet out of water. I barely managed to bate them off with a rolled up Irish News but not before on of the trout took a nick from one of my yokes.”
Local scientist Paddy Hughes maintains the new culinary tastes are a result of “global warming or the solar rays or something like that” and has warned male swimmers and fishermen to wear body armour or metal trunks for a few years “until the fish move on to China or somewhere like that”.
Following the news earlier in the week that both Tyrone Tribulations journalists were at large and on the run from the PSNI’s lie-eradicating team, authorities confirmed that the writers were finally tracked down in a shed in Glenelly, arrested and charged.
Hiding behind a cow, both men gave themselves up without much resistance apart from a bucket of water which was thrown in the direction of one of the officers. The Facebook campaign to show support for the outlawed journalists failed to garner much support with only 13 likes picked up in four days, two of which were from the men themselves.
A solicitor for the pair was unable to present any sober form of defence as a kangaroo court in Omagh found the men guilty of 189 lies over the course of two years. They received a 6-month sentence which is to be carried out in a field in Tattyreagh cutting up rocks for the county’s three stonemasons. Other conditions include no access to laptops or electronic devices in that time period and any postings on the Tyrone Tribulations website will result in the stiffer penalty of moving to a field in Loughmacrory.
Speaking from his cell, Gombeen admitted:
“It was good oul craic, these last couple of years. But, and this is a lesson to the children, your past catches up with you. We wouldn’t call it lies – more like being relaxed with the truth. But sure the site will still be there for anyone to browse over the 200 stories if they’re that bored out of their skulls.”
Shengas McGlumphie was unable to comment as he had already been placed in solitary confinement for writing a story on the walls of his cell about a Moortown man who unsuccessfully travelled to Africa to pick up the $45 million fortune a mysterious e-mailer told him he’d been left by a relation he didn’t know existed, before being eaten by a tribe of Ardboe settlers in Nigeria.
A Cookstown mathematics teacher of 21 years experience has been cautioned by the Education Board after his unusual methods were reported by angry parents.
Barney McGrath, who was born in Ardboe but moved to Cookstown in 1979, defended his style, claiming he had already coached over 1000 pupils to success in O Level and GCSE Maths as well as Additional Maths.
Tyrone Tribulations managed to acquire a copy of the latest homework he set his class. It included:
If you beat the head clean off 6 Derry men and kicked the tripe out of 4 Armagh men, how many men have you hammered?
Another puzzled posed was:
You make 16 bottles of illegal alcohol but the cops arrive and confiscate them all. However, during a fake road block you set up and the ensuing bloody shoot-out involving you and the police, you manage to retrieve a quarter of your poitin. How many bottles have you now?
Parent Josie Mulligan admitted she called the Board after her son produced this latest homework:
“Our wee Eoin was having nightmares and wetting the bed. We couldn’t put our finger on what was causing it until he started calling out things like ‘the square root’ and random numbers during one of his episodes. It appears Mr McGrath was terrifying the youngsters with his horrific sums. The man’s a headcase.”
Mr McGrath (49) admitted his methods may be considered somewhat outdated in today’s society but claimed you could hear a pin drop during his lessons:
“People need to loosen up a bit. Maths is maths no matter how you dress it up. My classes are memorable. For example, today I brought in 16 of my wife’s bras and asked the lads to hold up three quarters of them. They’ll never forget that sum.”
His school, St Bruce’s Secondary, revealed he was suspended this afternoon after he set another homework which included:
During an important match between Ardboe and Moortown, 14 innocent Ardboe players received limb fractures, 4 Moortown players pretended to have broken noses and 3 of the officials were slashed by knife-wielding Moortown women. How many people went home unhappy?
A 25-year old Ardboe woman maintains she has no regrets after spending her first two wages as a teacher on plastic surgery to look like a trout from the Lough in order to attract local men.
Mary-Ann Quinn, who also maintains a ‘wet look’ at all times, confirmed she has increased her success rate at discos in Cookstown by about 300% since the major transformation, despite serious reservations from her parents and nine brothers.
“For years I’ve had to listen to cousins talk for hours about ‘great catches’ and things like ‘jays she was deadly looking’ and stuff like that when coming home from a fishing expedition. Well I took that on board and I haven’t looked back. I courted nine men over the last three weeks, four from Ardboe, two from Ballinderry, two from Derrylaughan and an oul lad from Maghery. Money well spent I say.”
Since the operation, Quinn has looked into developing a scaly complexion as well as learning how to ‘flop about’ on the dancefloor, a new craze some are calling the ‘Moortown Mating Move’. Quinn’s mother Jacqueline admitted things have had to change around the house:
“Our Mary-Ann would have been fond of the fish suppers but since the lips changed everything has to be blended and sucked through a straw. It’s a bit of a hassle. Also, it’s very hard to make her out but I suppose young ones will always have their trends. In my day it was colourful leg warmers so I can’t talk.”
The plastic surgeon, an qualified plasterer from The Duckingstool in Brocagh, charges anything from £340 for an eely facial expression to £40’000 for full on pike.
News coming through that Sean Cavanagh may be on his way to Beragh. More shortly
Reports emerging that Owen Mulligan has been looking at an estate agents shop in Ardboe, sparking rumours of a transfer out east
TRANSFER! Joe McMahon has made the move down the road to Drumragh for six bags of coal and two VIP tickets to see Nathan Carter in Drumragh College.
We return to the Owen Mulligan story. He was in fact just looking at his reflection in the window and not property browsing.
More on that Sean Cavanagh move to Beragh. Beragh officials are prepared to offer their historic Standing Stone as well as three months of home heating oil for Sean’s services. There appears to be a hold up due to Cavanagh’s demands that his brother Colm goes too. Beragh don’t want Colm.
Noises made about Tommy McGuigan moving to Trillick. More on that later.
Sensational news emerging that Derrytresk have bid for Kerry’s Declan O’Sullivan. More later.
Trillick’s Jewish community have announced they will not renew their season tickets if McGuigan moves out west. Deal off.
The O’Sullivan to Derrytresk story is gathering legs as reports are confirmed of a Kerry reg car speeding up from Dromid towards Ulster.
TRANSFER! Moy have sold Philip Jordan to a knackers yard.
Owen Mulligan has been spotted chatting to Donaghmore‘s chairwoman Debbie Donnelly, sparking rumours of a move to St Patrick’s.
Declan O’Sullivan has been spotted buying a bottle of mineral in Cavan Town. Deal closing in.
The Mulligan story has been quashed after it was confirmed he was just chatting Donnelly up.
Beragh have backed down and are prepared to take the two Cavanaghs in exchange for the Standing Stone and the Drumnakilly Devil.
O’Sullivan spotted in Fivemiletown asking for directions to Derrytresk. Onlookers say he looks excited.
TRANSFER! Omagh have bought Moortown underage sensation Paddy Quinn for a packet of Haribo and two VIP tickets to see Nathan Carter play at Drumragh College and have promised to have him speaking English by Christmas
Ageing journalist Ronan McSherry seen buying a Brackaville jersey in Dungannon, sparking rumours of a sensational comeback.
The Cavanagh to Beragh saga has taken another turn as it emerged that Cavanagh’s wife doesn’t like the shops in Beragh.
Owen Mulligan spotted playing bingo in Edendork Hall, suggesting of a move to St Malachy’s.
Carrickmore have made a bid for entire Clonoe team.
Cash strapped Clonoe have accepted Carrickmore’s bid for their entire team in part exchange for Conor Gormley.
The Rock have denied rumours they are in the market for a new lawn mower, stating ‘we are happy with the mower we have.’
Mulligan will not be going to Edendork. He was simply checking out the talent at bingo in a Wayne Rooney sort of way.
Philip Jordan has failed his medical at the knacker’s yard
Cavanagh to Beragh is off. Mrs Cavanagh has complained about the climate up there.
Conor Gormley has been revealed as a Clonoe O’Rahilly player at Tessie’s, the only one left, sparking wild scenes of jubilation. Ruthless manager Cassidy says ‘he’s better than the shower we had anyway”.
Tommy McGuigan has controversially tweeted ‘punch a Ballinderry man today #dicks’.
One hour of the Tyrone Transfer Window left
TRANSFER! Ryan McMenamin has been sold to Uruguay. Uruguayan manager Hector Solaris reckons he’ll give them ‘that 1954 bite back’. McMenamin learning Spanish.
Tommy McGuigan spotted with a t-shirt which says “Why Always Me?” on the front of it.
Declan O’Sullivan arrives in Derrytresk
Declan O’Sullivan leaves Derrytresk in tears. They were just messing.
Urney have announced they will not be buying anyone in this window. Restless locals storm embassy.
TRANSFER! Colm Cavanagh has been sold to Beragh on a free.
TRANSFER WINDOW SHUT!
Ardboe officials were said to be ‘preparing for the worst’ after local footballer Timothy McGuckian mistakenly upset two different religious groups whilst shopping in the Spar for wheaten bread and a litre of milk. Sandbags and GPS devices have been purchased in case a navy onslaught starts this weekend.
The unfortunate series of events began when McGuckian contemplated buying a few sweets for his grandson who was suffering from a bad cold at the time. On being offered a couple of penny chews by the shopkeeper, the ageing footballer remarked:
“Ah feck no, sure I hate chews. They’re annoyed wee buggers and you can’t get rid of them”.
Jewish Rabbi Fredrick Hughes, who happened to be purchasing a pound of mince at the time, mistook the word chew for an attack on his religion and immediately informed the PSNI as well as leaders in New York. Within three minutes of the first incident, McGuckian again managed to alienate another religious grouping after innocently commenting on a new brand of white bread made by local man and aspiring baker Sean Teague. Whilst feeling the breads on offer, the full forward remarked:
“ah no, not Teagues. I hate Teagues. They charge ye through the roof for a heap of dung.”
Unfortunately Fr Quinn, thinking this was an attack on his fellow worshippers, or taigs as they are referred to by non-catholics, overheard the remark and immediately ex-communicated Timothy and anyone related to him.
The Vatican are reportedly considering issuing a Papal Bull, allowing neighbouring townlands of Ballymaguigan and Moortown the religious freedom to invade Ardboe and ‘drive the heathens into the Lough’ according to a spokesman for Pope Francis. Ardboe retaliated with a promise that the area isn’t into the racism at all and it was simply a dialectal confusion. He added that there was ‘no money in racism anyway’.
The phenomenon of nominative determinism – which describes the increased likelihood of choosing a profession as a result of being born to a particular surname – is currently being studied to see if location also has an impact on adult career choices.
A Tyrone Tribulations envoy met with Professor Johnny Pointless and his students at Oxford University’s sociology department, and hoped to prove that none other than our very own County Tyrone has the highest incidence of name-sake related jobs.
“It has long since been held that there is a strong link between one’s family name and the professional path people choose in life” professor Pointless told us, “even back to Shakespearean times. A look at some of the Co. Tyrone examples are quite remarkable, if true.”
Examples discussed included world famous golfer Darren Clarke, who spent his early years as a junior bookkeeper, training to be an accountant with a Dungannon firm. Unfortunately for Tiger Woods et al, Clarke decided in his early 20s that he wanted to explore another field.
Another Tyrone example was that Dennis Taylor had been a clothing alterations specialist at a formal dress-hire company in Dungannon. Taylor finally got fed up measuring lads for their school formals, and taking up trousers, so he decided to head for the dole queue. Soon he bridged the gap between Ireland and England, pocketing a fortune over the years.
Taylor did always however maintain contact with his protégé, local tv and radio star Malachi Cush, who himself was an all-Ireland snooker and pool underage champion. This example of nominative determinism explains why Taylor’s trousers were always impeccable during snooker tournaments.
Tyrone Tribulations also informed the Oxford team of the two brothers from Derrylaughan who have been running a very successful ‘Sahara animal trekking experience’ tour business along the romantic shores of Lough Neagh.
Following from their popularity, ‘Camel’s Riding School’ looks set to open for local kids parties this coming September. While Oxford pointed there were “parochial pronunciation issues at play” (Campbell versus Camel) this still did in fact qualify as a case where one’s surname had an influence on their paid profession.
Post and present Tyrone senior footballers and great friends Darren McCurry and Ryan (Ricey) McMenamin are opening a chain of Chinese takeaway restaurants in Dromore, with half and half a discounted special. This, also we are told, does qualify.
Other examples we raised with the team included former footballing greats such as Mickey Coleman, who has decided to put down his guitar and has stocked up on household fuels for the winter months. Chris and Stevie Lawn have obtained a franchise for a gardening firm and are presently seeking contracts round Moortown and Ardboe.
Former last gasp saviour and ‘keeper, John Devine is rumoured to be down in Maynooth in the early stages of becoming a deacon which was also accepted within the guidelines set primarily by the dictionary.
Stevie O’Neill being ‘a deadly man on a size five ball’ is not something the panel would accept at this stage, although we have arranged they be flown over to the next Clann na Gael training session to help reverse their decision on the 2005 Footballer of the year.
When we informed them of a postman in Coalisland called Pat, researchers confirmed that this was just an amusing coincidence and didn’t really qualify as nominative determinism. Also Mickey Harte, being universally loved all around the County, was “a totally separate matter… maybe if he was a surgeon or something” stated Pointless… little does he know we told him.
Following recent reports in the Irish News that proud gay boxing champion, and great fella, Junior Quinn from Clonoe wanted to be called ‘Queen’ again, Oxford’s boffins ruled this was just a pronunciation issue, “and again totally different to what we have been telling you all day.”
Also mentioned was Big Willie Anderson the Dungannon and Ireland rugby great who we said has tried to dismiss talk of some 1980s videotapes he made. Added to the disappointment that we could not produce the tapes, Pointless and his team indicated it would not have been counted anyway as Willie is a Christian name, not his family name, and ‘Big’ is an endearing term for the man because he is so well liked around his town.
While we await the final outcome to be announced, it can be confirmed that Tyrone is in the final two areas being reviewed. Also in the running are the Choctaw Indians of the USA, who actually do include an awful lot of real Indians.
As onlookers burst into a round of spontaneous applause, ten Moortown firefighters finally rescued a duck from the Lough after a 4 hour ordeal this morning.
The duck, thought to be from the Ballyronan area, was reported to authorities at 9am this morning by a woman out walking her four Labradors on the Ardboe Road.
Eleanor Quinn identified a worried look from the duck and quickly made the 999 call before it drifted out any further.
“I knew by the look of it that it was in a spot of bother. It sort of had a frown and the quacks were of a tired nature – like as if it had been out there for hours maybe even days. I know that the Lough can eventually lead to the Atlantic Ocean and people wouldn’t have batted an eyelid to see it float down the Bann. I knew I had to act now.”
The rescue operation, which involved an old disused fishing boat and a £1 net for catching frog spawn, took over four hours to complete such was the duck’s reluctance to trust the boat full of ten uniformed local men.
“Yes the duck was stubborn. We debated shooting it with a tranquilizer dart but with the eyes of the world on us we went the humanitarian way. Fortunately the duck finally saw sense and flew back to Ballyronan.”
There will be a parade through Moortown tonight in honour of the courageous firefighters who admit this was the first bit of action they have experienced since Brian McGuigan got his head stuck in a barrel in 2006.