Ian O'Doherty

Wednesday 23 July 2014

Owen Keegan – bigger than Jesus, you know

Published 10/07/2014|02:30

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Owen Keegan. Photo: Arthur Carron

Well, it's all gone a bit Father Ted, hasn't it?

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There are times of great national crisis when we need the elder lemons of our society to step in and make things happen. They need to put the greater good above their own petty ambition and be prepared, metaphorically speaking, to lay down their lives for us, the little people. You know the kind of cataclysmic, society-altering events I'm talking about, and now we can add Croke Park 2014 to the GPO in 1916 and Saipan in 2002.

Yes, yes, yes, we're all meant to be outraged about the Gareth Brooks controversy. Sorry, of course I meant to say the Garth Brooks controversy, but I've been spending so much time listening to our beloved Lord Mayor and two-time IRA jailbird, Christy Burke, that I'm not even sure how to pronounce the guy's name correctly. And if Hizzoner wants to call him Gareth, then that's good enough for me.

But while Burke was busy playing fast and loose with the correct enunciation of such a weird and foreign name as 'Garth', he is rather more constricted by the realisation that he is but a man, and man must abide by higher laws than the ones set down by mere mortals.

In fact, man must abide by the laws of City Manager Owen Keegan, defender of cyclists, scourge of motorists and, now, destroyer of rural dreams. As our poor, beleaguered Lord Mayor wailed plaintively: "If Jesus himself came down from the cross, he couldn't reverse this decision."

Now, having checked with Team Jesus and his crack team of publicists, Mr Christ says that he prefers not to comment on individual cases, but he did urge us to pass any further queries on to Owen Keegan on the proviso that we don't tell him where we got his number.

And as the nation slowly began to lose completely any grasp of arcane concepts like rationality or common sense, the hyperbole kept flowing like so much effluent from a broken sewage pipe. But Hizzoner wasn't finished amping things up to 11 – he then went on to say that: "This is like a funeral without the corpse. There's a sadness throughout the nation." Was he still talking about Jesus? Did nobody take him aside and point out that there was a complete absence of a corpse at that particular funeral?

I've heard of people mixing religious metaphors before (well, I haven't but bear with me) but that one has to be a doozy.

I admit to being a bit dusty on the ould Christian belief system thing, but if you mention Jesus on the cross, and then wibble on about a "funeral without a corpse" aren't you just talking about the Resurrection?

But there is only one true master of those of us who live in Dublin and he certainly moves in extremely mysterious ways – he is unelected and is better known for his dictatorial impulses when it comes to giving extra perks to his Chosen Few – cyclists.

And just like Jesus occasionally turning up in a tortilla, sightings of the Lesser Spotted Keegan have been few and far between, although some of the faithful are convinced that he will make an appearance amongst mortals, or the Oireachtas Committee as they're sometimes known, to explain his decision later today.

Owen – never apologise and never explain.

After all, if your decision really is as unpopular as people think, then the joy of democracy is that they will get to vote you out at the next election.

Oh wait – you weren't elected but you have more power than those who were, including the Taoiseach.

Ah yes, a great little country altogether.

Even better, the leading local resident who campaigned against the gigs, Eamonn O'Brien, actually lives in ... Castleknock.

So he's surely the first person to loudly declare NISEBY – Not In Somebody Else's Back Yard.

Well done, that man.

FINALLY A PRIEST WHO STANDS UP FOR HIS BELIEFS

There has long been a sniggering tendency of the Dublin smarterati to poke fun at the county of Donegal. Indeed, some poseurs have even referred to Donegal as the Florida of Ireland – a place populated by odd folk who do things differently.

But as much as we might like to rib on Donegolians, there are still some stalwart, stout defenders of the faith up there and we would do well to listen to them. Men like Fr Patrick O'Baoill, who has cast his eye over the state of his county and isn't impressed by what he sees.

And the main subject of his ire is, as you would expect, um, yoga.

According to the cantankerous cleric: "You should not practise yoga, or Thai Chi, or reiki. Do not put your soul in jeopardy for these contemptable (sic) things."

Far it be from me to doubt the priest's word. But in the great scheme of things that put people's souls in jeopardy, I rather doubt that yoga is going to send someone to the fiery depths of Hell, or worse, Donegal, for eternity.

No, we all know it's Pilates that you have to watch out for.

Honestly, the church is just so out of touch at times ...

YES, WE REALLY NEED MORE LIKE HER

So, 'peace activist' (translation – anti-American crank) Margaretta D'Arcy has returned to the loving bosom of Limerick jail following her repeated refusal to sign a piece of paper promising not to break into restricted areas of Shannon airport.

She wasn't asked to make a promise not to protest.

She wasn't asked to suddenly support the Americo-Zionist-Capitalist-Whatever that she likes to complain about.

No, she was just asked not to undertake the kind of activity that could cause a plane crash.

She refused and off to the choky she went.

Let's hope she is immediately placed in solitary confinement. Not out of a desire to punish her, just in an attempt to stop all the other prisoners in Limerick suing.

After all, there is the concept of a cruel and unusual punishment and sticking her in the general population surely qualifies as both.

Irish Independent

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