Sunday 22 April 2018

People are talking: Hiddleswift's last hurrah

Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift
Transport Minister Shane Ross. Photo: Mark Condren

Sarah Caden

Last Wednesday, there was a lot of anger at Taylor Swift, when her romance with English actor Tom Hiddleston officially ended.

In the face of the split, people - strangers, obviously - needed to assert that they never believed in the couple anyway. These are people not only driven nuts by the notion that this four-month affair was a stunt, but by Taylor Swift in general.

Apparently, Taylor dumped Tom because she didn't want to be his "arm candy" at the forthcoming Emmys. And she thought he wanted to be too public with their love, it has been reported. This seems a bit weird given the very staged photos of their fledgling love at her Fourth of July party, which were hardly driven by his massive publicity machine. But we're not getting on board with the Taylor-bashing.

So she split up with yet another boyfriend. So she was silly-happy for a while and now she's over it. So she's bloody 25. If we were all held to account for our youthful passions, it would be a very cautious and dull world. But then, the rest of us aren't multimillionaire success stories. What's more, the whole world isn't jealous of the rest of us. Maybe she's been a bitch to Tom. Maybe she wasn't nice to Calvin Harris, her ex prior to taking up with Tom by a matter of weeks, but she didn't do anything to the rest of us. So shake it off, people, shake it off.

Belgrade a soak. But we'll always have Paris

Pat Fitzpatrick

They say it's all about the result when you play away from home. (In the sporting sense, as against the encounter you had with that guy you met on So it was good that Ireland took a point from Serbia last week. Everything else was diabolical.

There were no videos of 10,000 drunk Irish people being hilarious in an urban setting. Not one Irish fan changed a tyre for the camera. A lullaby for a tired toddler on a train? No. The only off-pitch thing of note was that an Irish fan claimed he was stopped at the turnstiles by an FAI official, who thought he might be carrying an anti-John Delaney flag.

The match was about as entertaining as live fishing. Ireland played like the contestant who gets kicked off Strictly Come Dancing in the first week. And then, when it was all over, there wasn't even John Giles on the panel to put things in perspective. To make matters worse for the FAI, they're dishing up a classic a week over at Croke Park. Things need to improve and fast. Because we're not in Paris any more.

Forget hygge, go for the crack

Will Hanafin

Just when we were all forgetting about  mindfulness and frowning on feng shui, there's another wellness craze in town, the Danish art of hygge.  At last count there were ten books about hygge on offer, which is all about the Danish notion of cosiness and living well.

Some of the advice is a bit basic. They tell you to have dinner with friends, enjoy wearing woolly socks by the fire and looking out the window at the crisp winter morning sky.

The main hygge advocate is the aptly named Meik Wiking. He even tells us what hygge feels like. Apparently, you feel it if you run your fingers across a wooden surface or rub the hair of the skin of a reindeer! It's hard to feel all hygge when the Danes have such high divorce rates and take more antidepressants than most nations.

I'm going to stick with classic Irish concepts like the crack and feeling really bitter about other people's success!

Dail's Apple day keeps the brickbats away for one TD

Transport Minister Shane Ross. Photo: Mark Condren

It felt right that the Dail should be recalled to discuss the ongoing Mystery of The Missing Apple Billions only a few days after Irish children returned to school.

There was that same familiar first day of term mood. On one side of the chamber - the swotty teacher's pets sitting up front with their new notebooks and pens. On the other - the "too cool for school" crowd lounging on the seats at the back, rolling their eyes at everything teacher says.

When the dust finally settled, everyone who thought from the start that Apple should just cough up still thought that Apple should just cough up, while those who thought the Government should fight the ruling from Europe still thought the Government should fight it. Politicians deciding they were right all along, huh? Fancy that.

The one person to come out of the day ahead on points was the beleaguered Minister for Transport and Sport, Shane Ross, above, because, for a few merciful hours, no one was talking about what a nightmare he's having in his new job. He should be glad that he could still get to his job in the first place. Most workers relying on Dublin Bus weren't so lucky.

What a Gay Day

Anne Marie Scanlon

The "I'm no homophobe but" brigade gave themselves an airing after  Vicar Billy kissed boyfriend Todd on Coronation Street.  Not only do this lot lack self-awareness (you SO are homophobes) but also a sense of humour.  Social media was awash with statements of the "I thought it was Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve" variety.  This line is tireder than the mother of new-born triplets. 

Regular viewers aren't happy about Todd and Billy either.  That wimpy do-gooder Billy would have the hots for bad boy Todd is believable.  That his feelings would be reciprocated?  Not in a month of Sundays in which Billy wore his best cassocks. Two other  men made headlines this week with news of their shenanigans with Keith Vaz, the chair of  Westminster's Home Affairs Committee.  A happily married politician in a sex scandal, would you  Adam 'n' Steve it?

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