Scientists from across the globe have descended on Omagh today after it emerged that despite consecutive days of over thirty degree heat, an U16 match in Healy Park had to abandoned due to a waterlogged pitch yesterday.
With a hosepipe ban already in force, environmental boffins from as far as California and Cappagh are stumped as to how the Omagh sod remains unplayable after such a relentlessly hot period of weather.
Manager of Gortin U16s, Paddy Coyle, vented:
Calls for the official county ground to be moved to Dungannon have increased overnight with East Tyrone Lord Mayor Ginny Campbell adamant that this was the last straw:
“There hasn’t been a dry pitch in Omagh in my living memory. That’s why the Omagh ones always have dirty legs on holidays in Portugal. You can spot them a mile away. Dungannon is the multi-cultural capital of Ireland. It’s time we won back what is rightfully ours.”
Although it’s early days for a diagnosis, scientists are pointing to a phenomenon of the ‘anti-vanishing lake’ theory as a possible explanation for the Healy Park dampness. This theory suggests that there is a permanent invisible rain cloud over the ground which also explains why Joe McMahon and Ronan O’Neill always have slick hair.
A Brocagh mechanic, who has recently holidayed for a fortnight in Portugal and acquired an impressive tan, has vowed to not wash until he returns to work in case his new complexion is worn away by soap and water.
Noel McGrory (44) maintains he spent over £3000 on this tan and will not sabotage his chances of impressive female clients looking a servicing or tyres mended. His family, consisting of seven sisters and four brothers, as well as a wife and eight children, are pleading with the Ballybeg Rd man to even apply some baby-wipes to ease the unpleasant odour.
McGrory, unmovable, added:
“I didn’t sit in that Algarve sun for days with only a factor 15 on me for it to be washed away with a bit of Lifebuoy and water. I’m back to work this day next week and I’m not banjaxing the whole reason for spending that money on a holiday.”
The 21-stone former Brocagh Emmets full back has already been barred from several drinking establishments in a 10-mile radius due to his effect on other customers. Battery Bar regular John ‘Trunks’ Quinn admitted it was putting a strain on friendships:
“I completely understand McGrory’s predicament but he should have arranged to go back to work much earlier in the week. The smell is putrid and he wouldn’t be known for his general cleanliness anyway. But I can empathise. I went to Bundoran in 1988 and came back as brown as I’d ever been and the women were going mad any time I was in sight that first day. A quick bath the next morning and the whole shebang was gone.”
McGrory’s wife attempted to remind her husband that she likes him the way he normally is yet Noel equally informed her that a plain white Noel McGrory doesn’t pay the bills when it comes to women looking their spark plugs looked at.
A source from within the European Championship winning Portugal management team has revealed that their manager, Fernando Santos, made a panicked call to an unnamed lough shore manager at half time during their final match against the host nation France.
Santos, who holidayed in Ardboe regularly during the 80s and names eel as his favourite fish, was concerned that the infestation of moths in the Paris stadium was affecting his players and hoped that the experience of dealing with midges on the shores of Lough Neagh could be passed on to his squad.
Our source added:
“He was out of his mind but found a pay phone outside the changing rooms and urgently telephoned an Irish number. He seemed to know him well as he put on an Irish accent and I heard Fernando say at one stage, ‘Ghost-oh Jaysus boys the moths are tarra, Patsy’. His team talk after the call will live in my memory forever”
Santos immediately called the players into a huddle and gave them the most important advice of their young sporting lives:
“It transpired that the advice given by the east Tyrone manager was to ‘ate the bastes’ whilst you’re playing. Ronaldo asked, in Portuguese, what the hell that meant, even though he wasn’t playing at that stage. Santos explained that ‘ate the bastes’ meant to devour the moths as you play as it reduced their numbers as well as providing constant nutritional benefits. He mumbled something about it not doing Brian McGuigan any harm, whoever the hell he is.”
Portugal went on to win 1-0 in extra time, sparking wild celebrations in Porto, Lisbon and Dungannon.
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.
Following news that the PSNI underspent their annual budget to the value of £14 million, insiders confirmed that a massive Easter party and parade has been commissioned by police headquarters in Dungannon with the The Wolfe Tones reportedly headlining a concert which will round off a five-day session.
Faced with either handing back the money to the government or receiving a reduced budget next year, officials in the police force have voted to blow the money on beer, chocolate and concerts in the run-up to Easter, as well as male and female dancers.
A document leaked to our office catalogues what is planned for the 5-day extravaganza which will be attended by over 4500 police officers on off-duty at various times from April 1st-April 5th.
Purchases already made includes:
- 1390 Yorkie and Smartie easter eggs (large)
- 2950 crates of Coors Lite
- 1460 crates of Bitter
- Easter Sunday concert featuring The Wolfe Tones, Moygashel Flute Band and The Portuguese Ukulele Orchestra
- 6 bouncy castles
- A £300’000 firework display of red, white, blue, green and orange colours.
- 1400 new batons
- 2400 new face shields
- 13 water canons from Mexico
- 54 new hair dryers for speed detection
£1 million has also been set aside for a 4000-strong fancy dress party to be held up on Dungannon Hill for police forces across the world with a strict 1980s dress code enforced and music provided by the Village People Tribute Band from Killyman.
A high-ranking PSNI official added:
“Them folks on the hill will see none of that £14 million – a bit like the Northern Bank money I suppose. There’ll be some sore heads on Monday morning. Any remaining money will be spent on upping the Ardoyne overtime for the lads.”
The SDLP, DUP, Sinn Fein and UUP will all sent representatives to the various functions that week to make sure the money is spent wisely.
A first pilgrimage to Fatima, north of Lisbon in Portugal, for St Gerard’s Parish in Gortin has been described as an ‘unsuccessful venture’ by parishioners after a rushed booking saw the 50-strong group land in a 2-star hotel in Lisburn for a full week.
The party arrived home last night after a two-hour journey on a Chambers Coach down the M1, disappointed at the overall religious experience although some of the contingent admitted that eating a piri-piri chicken burger at the Bad-Ass Burrito Bar in the centre of the town gave them some flavour of the Portuguese culture.
81-year old Dorothy McCann maintains she will try to take the positives out of the trip:
“At least we got to see the Shaun The Sheep movie at Lisburn Omniplex. It was funny. It didn’t quite heal my cataracts which I’d hoped praying in Fatima would do but all the same I laughed a quare bit and had a lovely pineapple Slush Puppy.”
Pilgrimage organiser Kevin Brennan accepted total blame for the mix-up and but refused any requests for a refund:
“I made the error, yes. I thought staying in Lisbon would be a great experience for the people of Gortin. I did find it surprising at the time when the travel agent said we could take the whole journey by bus. But Lisburn was good too. We took in a tour of Lisburn Methodist Church which was a highlight. It was well worth the money.”
Despite being laden with Euros, the parishioners were able to convert their spending money back into Sterling and spend seven days walking around Easons, Waterstones, Bow Street Mall and join the Aviation Society before travelling back to Gortin with tales galore.
A DVD of the Lisburn pilgrimage will be available on April 1st, retailing at £19.99.
NI State Papers Reveal Devious Plan To Stop Tyrone ’86 All-Ireland Win. McCrea To Air Strike Carrickmore on Hang Glider.
The declassified NI State Papers for 1985/86 have sent shock waves throughout the county as it confirmed Unionist politicians funded Kerry’s training camps in the run up to the All-Ireland Final in 1986.
The papers also revealed the possibility of an aerial bombardment of Carrickmore, Galbally, Cappagh and Coalisland in a plane personally piloted by Willie McCrea and his dog ‘Butcher’.
The £3.2m UUP funding released for Kerry’s preparations for the 1986 final, which they won by eight points, enabled the Munster champions to come strong towards the end of the game, overcoming a seven point deficit early in the second half. A Tyrone insider from 1986 remarked:
“This explains everything. When Kerry ran out on to the field it was noticeable how tanned they were, so they were obviously in Portugal or Africa or something, running on fancy running machines. The Unionists just did not want to see us happy. Also, when Kevin McCabe’s penalty went over the bar I thought there was an unnatural gust of wind just at the moment he kicked it. Some satellite signal no doubt.”
The papers also revealed a request made by Willie McCrea to the Queen of England at the time to personally launch air strikes on republican hotspots using his recently required pilot’s licence and a motorised hang-glider with enough room for Butcher, his trusty dog.
McCrea’s appeal was rejected after what the Defence Secretary called ‘serious consideration’ with reservations about the effect of slingshotting rotten fruit and vegetables would have on the targeted communities proving too strong to ignore.
McCrea ignored their advice but had to abandon an attempt on Greencastle in 1987 when his glider got stuck in the Sperrins 30 seconds after take-off, with Buster visibly stressed and barking loudly.
Derrytresk GAA’s new manager Joswano Malinko has stunned the senior squad after enforcing a ban on consuming a plate of spuds on the morning of a match, and extending it to turnip and cabbage on Championship days. Malinko, who originally hails from Faro but has been working as a bouncer outside several Dungannon watering holes since 2006, claims there is strong scientific evidence to suggest that a slap of spuds impairs performance for up to nine hours after consumption.
During his first press conference at a corner of the field before the friendly against Maghery, Malinko reminded players he would be checking through windows to make sure the ban was being enforced:
“I have the addresses of everyone and I’ll be doing spot-checks during breakfast. When they least expect it I’ll pop up from under window sills. One of my best friends is Jose Mourinho and I was telling him about the Derrytresk ones eating plates of spuds with their jam in the morning. He took a quare laugh.”
Ex-captain Paddy Mulgrew reckons Malinko has made a big mistake early in his management career, citing the traditional nutritional benefits of the potato before a game:
“I’m a bit annoyed by this. For years we’ve been almost unbeatable at home and that’s undoubtedly the spud-effect. A man with a bellyful of potatoes and cabbage is far harder to shoulder over the sideline. This Portygal boy has waltzed in with his fancy dan ideas like omelettes and orange juice and thinks he’s deadly. Well, we’ll see. There’s boys already talking about filling their boots with spuds and eating when they can during games. This’ll not end well.”
Bookies have stopped taking bets on Derrytresk exiting the Championship in the first round, suspecting they’ll throw it in order to kill the turnip ban early on.
The sprawling village of Stewartstown, where no one has emigrated from or immigrated to since 1979, has decided to flex its international muscle and issue a sort-of nuclear threat to the rest of the world that they’ll be ‘taking no more shit’ from today onwards. Unfortunately nicknamed ‘tintown’, after it was revealed in 1948 that labourers wrap everything in tinfoil from their lunch to their tools, residents have decided that now was the time to reveal the arsenal of weapons they have been stockpiling since 1969 when they struck up a deal with the Russians.
Lord Mayor Cal Coyle announced during a hastily-arranged press conference outside the Credit Union:
“Yes, that’s right lads and lassies. We’re the bucking big boys now. We have shedfuls of Spanish fireworks, caps for Chinese toy guns, French bangers and Brazilian sparklers. Buckets of the stuff. Underground bunkers, hideouts in rural areas – you name it. Let the message be loud and clear – one more online reference to tintown or any other derogatory reference to Stewartstown and this planet is going to experience the Armageddon. Starting with Portugal or New Zealand maybe. We might give Brackaville a rattle first, like as a test drive.”
Flanked by 7 men and 3 women all wearing welding masks as disguise, Coyle was asked what sparked the declaration of war on the world at this particular time:
“I was reading something on boards.ie yesterday regarding weeding lawns and someone said something about ‘Stewartstown a.k.a. Tintown’. That was the straw that broke the donkey’s back. Then there’s them North Koreans, the Pakistanis, the Yanks, the Russians, the Chinese and the Iranis all boasting away about their nuclear capabilities. Well, try counteracting 5000 loop-the-loop fireworks being dropped on you from about 1200 feet. One of our lads recently got a provisional pilot’s licence and we know we can hire a small 2-seater from Newtownards. Just push our buttons one more time. ONE MORE TIME.”
The UN have confirmed they are taking this threat seriously but will wait to see if it’s just a result of nerves before the Intermediate quarter final against Brackaville that has sparked today’s declaration.
The Dungannon Tourist Board yesterday launched its campaign to bring in European residents to the town.
Under the slogan ‘Come to Dungannon – More than just a big Tesco’, the Board is particularly keen to invite Portuguese, Polish and Lithuanian citizens to the town.
“We’ve lots to offer newcomers”, said Community Liaison Officer Jill Moody. “We have the leisure centre, a roundabout with butterflies on it, and we’re hoping to get a Poundland soon. Dungannon really has got it all. Walk around the town and it’s just a sea of Tyrone faces everywhere. We’re proud of our town, but we want some multi-cultural influence as well. Come on world, what’s wrong with Dungannon? Come and see what we’ve got to offer.”
A spokesperson from Dungannon & South Tyrone Council told us:
“We’re right behind this campaign. Dungannon’s a great place to live and work. Whether its strolling through Dungannon Park, shopping in the Linen Green, or slaughtering chickens by the thousand, Dungannon’s got the lot”.
Local people out shopping on Saturday afternoon appeared to support the initiative. “Hi carumba!” said Granville local Enrique Gomez. “Thees eez wanderfuel news. We mus ‘elp all zeez people to come to our wanderfuel Dunganning. Arriba arriba”.
The view was shared by life-long Caledon resident Magda Adamczyk. “I am wirry hippy to hear ziz. I sink I will celebrit with big plate of beef goulash”.
The news was not met with universal approval however. 32 year old pencil sharpener Mickey Girvan of White City roared:
“You don’t want to encourage that sort of behaviour. Some of them foreign types are already all over the country. Imagine a whole nation of people going and putting down roots all over the place. You wouldn’t catch the Irish doing that. We keep ourselves to ourselves. Next thing you know they’ll be opening their own pubs. The cheek of it”.
Sean Duggan, a 54 year old sparrow trainer of Drumquin agreed. “I don’t trust them foreigners. I went on a big trip last summer. Terrible experience. Weird people with odd habits, eating inedible food. And I couldn’t understand a word they were saying. Last time I go to Coalisland for a holiday”.
A BBC documentary on economic hardships in Ireland has uncovered a previously hidden phenomenon surrounding the eating habits of youngsters going to Brocagh, Aughamullan and Kingsisland schools. The TV show initially wanted to focus on emigration in the area after it emerged that the entire Derrytresk football team are moving to the States soon. However, they soon discovered, by accident, that primary and some secondary school children are being reared on turf in order to beat the recession’s effect in the east of the county. Executive producer Scunthorpe Kilpatrick was taken aback by the discovery:
“We knew something was up when we filmed a few homes going about their normal daily routines. At lunch time, the majority of families appeared to be boiling large industrial pots of what looked like a mixture of moss and turf, slapping it on to plates. After eating, I noticed the children had really black teeth for a while. When we asked what it was they were eating, they passed it off as ‘pate’ which turned out in standard English to be ‘peat’. They were stewing it, boiling it, frying it, baking it, toasting it and sometimes just snacking on it raw. They seemed quite happy.”
It wasn’t until they filmed the children in school that they became aware of the dependance on the natural commodity.
“Even though there were plenty of options in the canteens like lasagne, Haribos or burgers, the children seemed to prefer the turf sandwiches. It appears that what initially seemed like an effort to cut costs is now a staple diet by choice. It’s quite remarkable. I’ve seen children dander out up the ramparts, sit down and chew away on the banks. It’s like a real-life Willy Wonka story.”
Local historian, Felix Hughes, claims it’s the circle of life:
“Every 100 years ago, people down this way rediscover the delicacy that is lowland turf. This usually lasts for about 10 years or so until they go too far and start drinking the water in the ditches and someone gets an awful dose of the skitter. But that’s another five years away in this cycle.”
Hughes was quick to point out that the turf is for local consumption only and that anyone seen trying to eat the turf from foreign places like Coagh, Eskra or Portugal will be shot from a distance with an air rifle.
For the third year year running, Gerry Talbot won the Annual Galbally’s Got Talent competition in the Parochial Hall with his ‘saying the alphabet backwards after a half bottle’ routine. Organisers were hoping for an improvement in the overall quality of entrants following disappointing viewing numbers for last year’s final when Talbot beat off Katy Hurson who made a lasagne in twenty minutes. Their hopes were dashed with the first act as Frank Loughran sang the nursery rhyme ‘Rock-a-bye-baby’, missing out most of the words.
“I don’t think we’ll do another one”, claimed chairman Lisa Teague. “There are only so many times we can acclaim Gerry as our best talent. To say the alphabet backwards is great, and to do it whilst tipsy is admirable, but you’d really think he’d develop his act, like. That’s three years solid he has lifted the trophy doing the same thing. What’s more bewildering was the rapturous applause he received again after he did his bit. I know he does a bit of home-brewing but I didn’t think he was that important. Seems he is.”
Teague detailed some of the other competitors whilst sounding a warning regarding the future of the event:
“In second place this year was Jason Peoples who brought his dog onstage. That was it. Bringing the dog onstage was his talent. Like for Jaysus sake. People even applauded that. In third place was Yori Hussanni, our Portuguese resident. He came on and pointed at objects whilst naming them in his native tongue. At least we think he was. Mickey Murphy just soloed a ball in his Tyrone top. He got a few boos for that. Paddy Tally read out his best lecture notes. It was all a bit subdued to be honest. I can’t see it happening next year.”
As well as the trophy, Talbot received a ten-pound voucher to be spent in the local convenience store.
A recent survey carried out by the Matt Talbot Research Centre in Omagh has discovered that the staff at the Cookstown CU are the most likely workforce in the county to get completely blattered every weekend and every other day during the week. The infamous Strabane Bikers – ‘The Pissed Off Bastards of Bridge Street’ – are the most teetotal grouping, closely followed by the ‘Eskra Eucharistic Ministry Society’.
The news that the Credit Union in Cookstown came out top in the survey came as no surprise to customers who commented on the outlet’s reluctance to give out any loans at all on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays due to severe hangovers.
“Ah sure I’m not surprised one bit,” Seamie Sheehey told us. “Everyone knows that you haven’t a hope in hell of getting even a tenner on a Wednesday. They’d be awkward and call your bluff. You’d be asking for a lock of pound to ‘do the kitchen’ and they’d be saying ‘sure I was in your kitchen last week and there’s nothing wrong with it’. Yet on Thursday they’ll hand out a grand even if you only needed a ton to pay the parking fines. It’s a lottery, especially if they’ve been on two day benders. My mother asked for £2000 for a holiday in Portygal and even though she had £1500 savings in it, they told her it’d be more in her line to go to mass more often than to be galavanting around Faro.”
In second place were the clergy in Pomeroy who consume more wine in a year than the whole Basque region in northern Spain.