When he was comfortably settled on the government front bench, Wille O'Dea was rarely a man lost for words.
Indeed, he was often most vocal on a variety of topics, and liked to air his views on the opposition ineptitude during rowdy Dail sessions.
But oh, how he's a more humble and less opinionated Fianna Fail soldier these days. Wearing his social protection spokesman's hat, he presented himself to a posse of reporters on Thursday, to launch the party's bill on pension reform.
But then the pesky press hit him with a question on his own personal view on gay marriage. Willie almost swallowed his jaunty moustache. "I'm here to talk about pensions," was his nervous dodge. It seems he learned a thing or two about evasive manoeuvres during his stint as defence minister. . .