Thursday 24 May 2018

Don't mess with an Irish mammy

Everybody knows you don't provoke an Irish mother. Stock photo
Everybody knows you don't provoke an Irish mother. Stock photo
Brendan O'Connor

Brendan O'Connor

On the radio on Thursday, Justin McAleese told Sean O'Rourke that you should never get in an argument with his mother, Mary. You could probably broaden out that rule to 'You should never get in an argument with any Irish mother'. And you suspect the Catholic Church is currently finding that out the hard way.

The Church has weathered a lot in its time - reformations, angry kings, Vatican bankers, overzealous inquisitors, singing priests, the sexual revolution, The Beatles, Ratzinger, Father Ted. And it largely survived, diminished at times, but still plodding along. But now it is going to come up against a force the like of which it has never felt, a force of which it has no comprehension, a force it underestimates because she is, after all, merely a woman. Maybe they need to ask Justin for tips.

And not only is the Church going head to head with an Irish mother - it's worse than that - it is going head to head with an Irish mother spurned. And these guys think they know about hell's fury? They ain't seen nothing yet. Everybody knows you don't provoke an Irish mother. And you certainly don't tell her, when she wants to speak at a conference for International Women's Day, "that carry on is all very well but not under my roof". Everybody knows that's mammy's line. You don't try to turn her own tactics on her. Mammy doesn't like a smartarse.

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