| 9.4°C Dublin

'Fawlty' faux pas as Mary-Lou's Manolos fail to damage Gilmore

IT was almost like old times in Leinster House yesterday, with another howler in the Order of Business involving the Tanaiste.

However, the gaffe-prone Calamity Coughlan wasn't back in the Dail.

This time it was Tanaiste Eamon Gilmore, and he was on the receiving end of a bungled attempt to put the boot into him.

Mary-Lou McDonald rose to sink her carefully prepared verbal stiletto into the Tanaiste over the headless-chicken carry-on about household charges.

"Tanaiste, watching the antics of your Government in recent times reminds me a bit of 'Fawlty Towers'," she declared.

"The latest water charges episode has you and the Taoiseach cast as Manolos, claiming that you know nothing."

A brief puzzled silence descended on the chamber. That didn't sound right.

The fashion-conscious among the deputies were the first to rumble that the Sinn Fein Sybil had just called the Taoiseach and the Tanaiste a pair of designer high heels -- instead of dubbing them hapless waiters from Barcelona.

Then the delighted deputies scrambled to correct Mary-Lou Malaprop.

"Manuel!" they crowed happily. "Manolos are shoes," called out Arthur Spring, displaying an impressive knowledge of high heels.

Mary Lou was sporting a Blahnik, sorry, blank expression until she spotted her blunder.

"Or even Manuels," she added sheepishly. But there was no way back for the Sinn Fein Sybil after that 'Fawlty' faux pas.

Irish Independent