Remember to floss kids!

Not sure this makes for an interesting blog post but it’ll take my mind off it for the next ten minutes. I’ve had the most horrible few days and nights. Started getting a pain in my tooth on Friday. It got worse. Insanely so. It got me up early Saturday and Sunday. I think that’s the last time I slept.

I spent the entirety of last night pacing back and forth, moaning and groaning, trying to distract myself with movies when I could stay still, and the Wii when I couldn’t. I’ve never known such a severe unrelenting pain. I’m pretty sure removing the lower half of my face would be less painful.

I went through three boxes of painkillers over the weekend and they did nothing. I coldnt wait for the long weekend to be over. I got an emergency dentist appointment this morning, or make that yesterday morning if you’ve had a night’s sleep. Half of my mouth has an infection. So antibiotics and hardcore Ponstan are the order of the day, that’s more like it.

But even the Ponstan just take the edge for a little while though. This is fucking crazy insane pain. I can’t sit still or stop grimacing. Yesterday I seemed to develop Tourrettes; randomly shouting, clapping, banging my feet, pulling faces. Anything to try and distract from the pain. And exhaustion.

I thought I’d be out cold tonight not having slept a wink last night. I thought I wouldn’t be able to keep my eyes open. But nope. Here I am again, day 5, in the house of pain, 3:50am, wandering around like a sleep deprived zombie. I’ve already taken two days worth of Ponstan tonight.

Oddly enough, I haven’t been out of work yet. I managed the best part of a day’s work yesterday when I got back from the dentist. The distraction of working, when I could bear it, was as good as any other. Of course I couldn’t handle this if I worked in a regular office and not from a home office. Imagine me in a regular office; walking around grimacing, randomly barking over the pangs of pain and rocking back and forth at my desk. No, that wouldn’t do.

And here’s the thing. I went to the dentist with the exact same complaint 3 years agao, and he referred me to a specialist to have it removed. I was on a waiting list all that time and now I’m back on it! Wtf!? So hopefully the Antibiotics will clear the infection up soon enough (again!).

Well that killed twenty minutes. Might as well publish it. Then I’ll get back to the zombie shuffle. Or I might writhe around the bed for a few more hours wondering if when I can take more Ponstan. Woe is me etc etc…

Smile of a stranger

Book in hand I open the front door and the sun burns a smile on to my face. I glance to the left as I lock the door and catch the eye of a guy walking down the terrace path. He’s young, early twenties, not Irish, maybe Polish. I turn to the right and head to the canal for my hour of solace. His footsteps behind me are silent, like mine, the Nike generation.

I cross the road, one turn left, one turn right and I am alone on the street that leads to the canal. As I cross a final road, a guy appears from the right and walks in front of me. He’s young, early twenties, not Irish, maybe Polish. He stops at a door and turns to the right as he inserts the key. He catches my eye and smiles. I smile back, and nod to acknowledge the joke of our mirrored exchange.

He’s younger than I thought I ponder. Give him a few more years and he’ll stop smiling at strangers. Strangers who will easily, and understandably miss such subtleties, and strangers who will think him strange for smiling. But I cherish the moment, and the canal is all the more soothing that day.

Total protonic reversal

"Aw shit I really should’ve gone before we left that kip" said Jay. "I’m gonna burst a pipe".

"Yeah nuthin’s open, no taxis, and no public jacks for miles" said Sean "No wonder this city smells of piss".

"Next lane?"

"Too right"

If that lane was two miles away, the lads would have held on, but it wasn’t far at all and the closer they got, the more their bladders felt like a pufferfish after swallowing a bath.

They started to run but it was a funny kinda run. You know the one; more of a dance, knees knocking together, fists clenched and their foreheads sweating piss.

They made it to the top of the lane: "AAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHH". Like Lennon and McCartney, in perfect chorus. Then Johnner comes running up the Lane screaming at the top of his lungs. "N0000000000000000000000000".

"What the f….?"






"Oh for fucks sake Johhner have you been watching Ghostbusters again? You made me piss all over me jeans ya big muppet"

"Eh, sorry"


If you liked that you might like “Your number’s up mate” and “Corky


There really is something special about The Specials. To me at least. There’s no sound more nostalgic. Every time I hear them I’m brought right back there in a way no other music does.

On the edge of your teens, exciting times, a wannabe rebel, walking the streets, a gaggle of you, trying to look tougher than you are, school nothing more than an inconvenience, somewhere else to fly your flag, your school bag a blank canvas for two tone insignia, your big black marker a prized possession to mark your territory anywhere you can. Your uniform; a challenge, make it your own, skinny the tie; turn the trousers up tight, shine the Docs; Rudeboy?

Nah, no Rudeboy; skinny little white boy with fears of the world – but you hear that music now and you’re right back there, ready for it all. There’s girl’s to be fought over, lessons to be learned, teenage memories to be etched on your brain forever. Dance around the fire. Pass the flagon. Put you arms on my shoulders, and sing the song, a song that will bring you right back there twenty years later and still burn a fire in your belly.

Doctors can now feel what you feel!

You know all those whacky predictions you make as a kid? I can clearly remember three.

1. Life-like 3D first person games

There was one game I used to always play in the arcades; Kung-fu, a two dimensional platform game, where you made your way along some kind of stage kicking and punching 17 identical brothers before you got to kill the big boss. Great fun. And the one where you were a tank, which seemed mad-futuristic even though it was some green lines on a black background. I always had this crazy idea that someday, computer games would almost be like cartoons where you controlled the main character. Except even more realistic than that. And you could go wherever you wanted, not just left and right on some kind of stage. I can clearly remember saying that to a mate in an arcade one day and he thought I was completely deluded. Well how’d you like them apples!?

2. Watching / Recording other people’s dreams

When I was into sci-fi novels, I had one idea for a novel, not a fully-fledged story, just an interesting occupation for the main character; a world famous dream artist, filling huge arenas with people who would come to watch his dreams live. But then one day his dreams get hacked and everyone sees him on the big screen dreaming about a murder that happened that day. But it wasn’t really him. Or was it!? Aaaannnnyway. I always thought it would be a fascinating advancement, and again here we are; this is now possible. Almost. kind of; read all about it on Pink Tentacle.
(This isn’t exactly breaking news though. This post has been in a draft for two months!)

3. Doctors feeling what you feel

Then there was the one about going to your futuristic doctor. You stick a wire on your head and the other end on is and he shouts "Christ, that’s fucking sore! Here take three of these twice a day and don’t go to the toilet for two days" and you can be on your way.

Well I’m still waiting for that one. Some day though. You mark my word.

A very short story

“He lifted her bloodied head – eyes gouged out, bedroom door ajar, then looked inside, prised the knife from her hand and repeated the act.”

I thought I’d have a go at a twitter sized (140 characters) short story during the week. Though I did get one WTF?! reply on Twitter, thankfully the Dublin homicide team didn’t smash the door down; recently a friend of a friend of…. twittered about smothering her daughter, very obviously joking and in context. Soon enough the LA cops were banging the door down. Yikes.


I saw this logo today and I laughed out loud despite the fact that it perfectly represented one of my pet peeves. It’s a clever logo, yet at the same time I couldn’t believe a company were using a mark that perpetuated the king of misrepresented ailments.

Despite many cultural references that would have you think otherwise, Schizophrenia has nothing to do with split personality. Indeed the word is actually derived from a Greek word meaning split mind but it’s a name that just happened to stick, despite being considerably inappropriate.

Alas my quest to chastise said company was a bit of a wild goose chasing a red herring, or something. When I arrived at the original source of the logo, it turns out it’s not a real company name, just an idea for a logo by a designer. And commenters there have already pointed out that this logo is an exact representation of what schizophrenia isn’t.

The Blue Light

I can remember when I was much younger, entirely dismissing trad as fiddledy dee nonsense. How wrong I was, I’d like to go back and give myself a clip around the ear.

I was up in the Blue light last night. What a little treasure the place is. Perched on the hills of Barnacullia, not too far back from Sandyford, the view of Dublin is perfect.

Every Wednesday, musicians pile in one by one and join in with whatever is playing. Both elderly gents and young colleens with their fiddles. Artists sit by the crackling fire sketching the musicians and comparing their work. Lovely atmosphere, lovely place. It’s a bit of a bitch to get there and back but that just adds to the adventure of the night. Highly recommended antidote to the city at this time of year. And if you have any visiting yanks looking for somewhere traditional, they’d cream themselves.

Moral crusaders

The missus has been invited on to Seoige today to debate with David Quinn of The Iona Institute about FertilityCare, a fertility clinic in Galway, who only treat married couples.

Only in Ireland can you get away with religious morals to discriminate against people with physical impairments.

No doubt they’ll crank out some statistics about the kind of home married couples provide for children. Like this one:

“He highlighted the recent British Millennium Cohort study which found that children born to an unmarried couple have a 25 per cent chance of seeing their parents separate by the age of five. By comparison, only one in ten children born to married children saw their parents separate at the same age.”

I’m so sick of idiots cranking out statistics while completely missing how irrelevant they can be. You can not take a statistic based on the general population and compare it to people in a very specific situation. A couple putting themselves through the pain, anguish, disappointment, crippling costs, and physical and mental intrusion of fertility treatment, make a far bigger commitment to a child than the ideal of marriage. People who are willing to go through this ordeal to have a child can in no way compared to a general populace who for whatever reason aren’t married and may or may not even wanted to conceive.

Argh. Effing Moral crusaders. Why can’t you just let people live their own lives?


It wasn’t the first time I’d woken up not knowing where I was, but it was the first time I’d woken up not knowing where I was! I’d experienced this odd phenomenon before where I’d wake up and have no idea who or where I was. No idea at all. And then a few minutes later, the cobwebs would clear and reality would kick in. But not today. I was lying in a pile of black bags somewhere in the city, using a pool of vomit as a pillow. My head ached, my body ached. Had I been beaten? Kidnapped? I had no idea. I had no memory of how I got here. My last memory was being curled up in bed with her. I longed to see her more than ever. I needed her warmth. I needed her loving hands to caress me. I needed to be at home feeling safe. That was all that mattered. The longing welled up and my tears trickled into the vomit.

I tried to stand. My legs felt weak and my head spun, but the dizziness passed and I was just about able to walk. I’d been able to wipe some of the sick from my face with a discarded carpet. The carpet stank but not as much as I did. I didn’t recognise this part of the city. I couldn’t even sense where the river was. Usually you can tell, almost subconsciously. Or maybe it was just the gulls hovering in the air. Panic kicked in. Was I even in the same city? The same country? My heart raced. And my legs picked up pace. I began to run up an alleyway hungry for the sight of a familiar landmark at the end. There was none. I kept running. I didn’t see the road, didn’t see the cars. They beeped, swerved and skidded. I kept running even though all my limbs ached.

I kept running until I came to a fountain in a square. I didn’t realise just how thirsty I was until I saw that glistening liquid calling out to me. I couldn’t help myself. I ran to the water and drank until my belly felt heavy. But not as heavy as my heart. I had to see her. Every ounce of my body longed for her warmth. But I still didn’t know where I was. I sat there at the fountain, still panting from my run. A saw a man approaching. I grew nervous. He was smiling and began to hold his hand out to me. There was something in his smile that seemed familiar and then in a flash it all came back. A smiling man approaching, the smile dropping at the last instant, trying to run, hands grabbing, another man, a van, dragged into the van, others in the van, then a sharp pinch at the neck as chemicals mixed with blood and I went unconscious.

I looked at the smile of the approaching man but didn’t wait for the smile to fade this time. I ran. I ran in a blind panic again paying little attention to traffic. Cars beeped and swerved as I ran across the road. But I wasn’t so lucky this time. I felt something the size of a small planet collide with my world. Although the immense pain was brief, before I passed out, I was still conscious of the man’s presence and knew he was upon me.

It wasn’t the first time I’d woken up not knowing where I was. But at the same time I experienced an intense feeling of familiarity. Like I’d been through this recently. Then it all came back to me, quickly this time. The pain I now felt was on a different level completely. I could barely open my eyes. But then I noticed a smell. A familiar aroma that made my heart soar. It was too good to be true. I had to get my eyes open. My heart sank as I noticed the man from the fountain. Then it almost burst. She was here too! I felt dizzy with relief and happiness. They saw me stir and came to be near me. She brought her face next to mine, happiness filling her eyes with tears. As much as it hurt, I couldn’t help but wag my tail. She rubbed her nose against mine and I licked her face. I was never so happy. She hugged me gently and whispered soothing words in my ear. But the only word I heard was home. And it was the sweetest word I ever heard.

Inspired by, and for Homepages – Stories From The Irish Blogosphere