Tuesday 21 November 2017

People are talking: The wrong end of an all-girl clique

Spice Girls
Spice Girls
Answering Ireland's call: Liam Neeson

Julia Molony

It's 20 years since Ginger Spice, Scary Spice, Posh Spice, Sporty Spice and Baby Spice blasted into the charts. But which one was Snarky Spice? Who was Bitchy Spice? What about Tormentor Spice?

Because it wasn't all larks and female friendship. Life as one of the famous five could be a little bit fractious. Always something of the outsider in the crew, Sporty Spice has revealed that she was bullied during her years with the band.

"I'm not going to name names. But yes. It's been addressed, they were aware of what they had done. They apologised," the singer - AKA Mel C - told Attitude magazine, explaining that she wishes that, as a younger woman, she had been "a little bit stronger".

The girl power may not have been exactly equally shared out among the five. Which may explain why Mel C turned down an offer of £2m to reform the band earlier this year. No amount of cash could have convinced her to go back to being on the wrong end of a girl clique.

It's something anyone who has gone to an all-girl school can easily understand.

Being Irish is an exhausting gig

Pat Fitzpatrick

We're bidding to host the 2023 Rugby World Cup. Quick, plaster on your fixed grin. Remember to wink at strangers. The world is watching. And they will expect us to be the Full Irish.  

The Full Irish is captured in the video (narrated by Liam Neeson) released to support our bid. We are a cultured, constantly smiling people with important jobs in biopharma companies. (As against a group of jaded Strictly fans working in a call centre. After all, hasn't 'post-truth' just been voted word of the year?)

Being Irish is exhausting.

Our lads that went to France for Euro 2016 are still sleeping 16 hours a day, while they wait for their new livers. The rest of us are in recovery after all the re-imagining and marching around with hurleys we did during the 1916 commemorations.

Now this. You can expect a stream of rugby types over the next few years, evaluating our bid from all angles (and staying in a lot of five-star hotels). It'll be like the troika, but with thicker necks.

As for us, we'll be all over them like a cheap suit. There's no rest for the Irish.

Nervous politicians getting into poll position

Eilis O'Hanlon

So on the one hand Irish politicians are all desperately scrambling round trying to persuade Donald Trump that they didn't really mean all that stuff they said about him... and on the other hand, Jobs Minister Mary Mitchell O'Connor has offended the Brits by saying their attitude towards Brexit is like that of a husband who wants to keep all the goodies after a divorce.

Meanwhile, the trade unions are acting as if there's a magic pot of gold to dip into; there's a new right-wing populist party in town threatening to out-Trump the Donald; the EU is flexing its muscles; and some Fianna Failers are flirting with Ryanair boss Michael O'Leary.

There's a growing smell of election in the air - but will Enda dare to call another one when the electorate is in such an unpredictable mood?

If Trump can end up in the White House, we could well find ourselves with one of our own celebs in charge. Conor McGregor for Taoiseach, anyone?

Toto, we're not in Kansas any more.

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