SMOKES & DAG­GERS

A mis­chievous mix of (mostly) news

The Irish Mail on Sunday - - COMMENT -

SINN Féin tried to re­name the Wa­ter Ser­vices Bill as the Wa­ter Ser­vices (Wa­ter Charges By the Back Door) Bill but was ruled out of or­der. Fianna Fáil’s Barry Cowen, pic­tured, had an al­ter­na­tive name, TV3’s Gavin Reilly re­vealed: ‘the Wa­ter Charges (or Fines by the Back Door for Those Who, De­spite Ev­ery Ef­fort and As­sis­tance Be­ing Given to Them, that is Con­tained in this Bill, that They Still Want to Leave Their Tap On, and Ex­pect to Get Away With It) Bill.’ THE cul­tural di­rec­tor of the Lon­don Ir­ish Cen­tre, Gary Dunne, re­lates the fol­low­ing ex­change be­tween him and his child. ‘Dad, Dad! The Santa Wire came to our school last week!’ ‘The Santa Wire?’ ‘The SANTA WIRE! The big cup!’ The child meant, of course, the Sam Maguire. OC­CA­SIONAL Ir­ish Times colum­nist Ni­amh Towey re­lated this tale, as part of an on­line cam­paign to raise aware­ness of sex­ual ha­rass­ment, about a time she was shown the male ap­pendage that she did not want or ex­pect to see. ‘In a pub with my beloved granny when this aul lad up to his gills came to say hello to her with his fly down (un­in­ten­tion­ally, I think) and noth­ing cov­er­ing him­self.’ The re­sponse is bril­liant: ‘“The cage is open but the beast is tame,” Granny said. God I miss her.’ SI­MON Har­ris’s ‘fact sheet’ on the Al­co­hol Bill con­tained a bit of good news: a pledge that the Guin­ness sign over St James’s Gate would not be taken down if the Bill was passed. MICHEáL MAR­TIN was can­vass­ing with Dar­ragh O’Brien TD and Se­na­tor Lor­raine Clif­ford Lee this week in Dublin North when they met a woman who said she had a con­nec­tion with an ex-min­is­ter based in Cork. ‘You know, the man who al­ways has the lovely tan,’ said the woman. Even­tu­ally, they fig­ured out that she meant Billy Kelle­her, left, FF TD for Cork North Cen­tral and health spokesman. Mar­tin was over­heard ask­ing that Kelle­her be told to ‘cut back on the hol­i­days’.

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