Billy Keane: 'A Christmas feed that would take care of two for €2.97? The Tight Woman has a word for it - sort of'
The word the woman I met in the street used was loco-commotion. It's a new word even though it sounds like an old word for moving, if you say it fast.
"I might use that one in the paper - that loco-commotion one," says I. "What about the royalaties?" asks she.
She is The Tight Woman. If there's anyone here from America reading this, well tight here is mean with money, and not drunk. If you're tight in America, you're drunk.
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There's no fear of The Tight Woman going bust. There are some people who are very good with money.
The Tight Woman would mind mice at The Six Crosses. The only time herself and the husband ever drink is when there's a book launch or an art exhibition and the wine is for free. They never bought a book in their lives, and she was the only person ever thrown out of the all-you-can-eat Chinese restaurant in the city for eating too much. The Tight Woman also ate a reported 17 fusion hoisin duck samosas with parsley sauce at a free sampling in the supermarket.
She doesn't pay any bin charges. I've seen The Tight Woman drop her rubbish in the street bins, for free, late at night when she thinks no one she knows is looking.
Us bar staff spot everything. Before I get to The Tight Woman's savings tips for Christmas, we will take another short diversion down Relationships Street.
I was walking home from work very late on a Tuesday night and I saw a man coming out the door of a house. This was a strange occurrence for a Tuesday night. I made no comment of any kind and I pretended not to see the man looking up and down on the doorway before he exited.
The woman of the house was gone from the husband. Or maybe the husband was gone from her. Either way I didn't ask the man who was leaving the house what he was doing there, nor did I care, for it was none of my business. Live and let live and all that.
"I was changing a fuse for her Billy," volunteered the man who was coming out of the house.
"It's nice to be nice," says I.
I know the mindset of some around here.
There is no doubt but that the Rumourer in Chief of The 2+2=5 Society will read this and say: "Ha ha, the nice to be nice man changing the fuse in the home of the woman gone from the husband must be an electrician."
Well he's not. You don't have to be an electrician to change a fuse. So there's a big clue straight away.
All the 2+2=5 Society has to do now is to narrow the search down to the men in the town who are not electricians, but still know how to change a fuse.
As promised, we are back with The Tight Woman and her request for royalaties.
"What about 'em?" answers I, defensively abruptly which is just a bare grade below passive-aggressive .
The reason I was defensive-abrupt was I didn't want to start a precedent. I reasoned that if I had to pay for every word I robbed off people in the streets of our town, there wouldn't be anything left for myself.
The Tight Woman has no time for all the hype surrounding Christmas. Hence her new word loco-commotion.
"They are all going mad at the spending," she says. "Buying things they don't need and on the road day and night. The turkeys are as big as ostriches. The banks conned everyone in to cashless society and the credit cards will have the country as broke as ever in no time at all. All you have to do is tap a machine and the bills are paid until the card bills come in. It's the same as tapping a lad for the price of a pint.
"For Christmas dinner Himself and myself are having delish packet turkey slices, three each, with eight Brussels sprouts (four per person), two loose potatoes, one large, one small. And a carrot."
I presume the spuds are per person. But it could be the big one is for her husband who used to be big when he was single, and the small one is for The Tight Woman, who trained herself into making starvation her friend.
On went The Tight Woman with her informative talk on domestic science. "We buy the turkey slices at the last minute on Christmas Eve. They usually have a gone-out-of-date sign saying December 24, 2018, and they are going cheap. We are using a raspberry jam sachet instead of cranberry sauce and we are feasting on yum-yum reindeer droppings for dessert. Total cost of Christmas feast for two is €2.97."
Beat that, Kevin Dundon.
The husband doesn't eat too much either. He has stomach problems. Back in the days when The Tight Woman used to buy the full turkey, she made turkey consommé from the carcass for St Brigid's Day, which is held on the first day of February. The husband was sick then too, the poor man.
I have this much in common with de Valera. One peep into my heart, and I know what the people of Ireland are thinking. You want to know the recipe for the seasonal reindeer droppings. Am I right?
The Tight Woman moulds bits of fudge sweets between her thumb and index finger. The fudge miraculously transforms in to lovely little tasty ball- bearing shaped treats. And says The Tight Lady, triumphantly, "That's the Christmas taken care of for another year without any loco-commotion of any kind".
I was always very fond of Kylie Minogue and I didn't blame her when I did my back dancing to her hit song 'Locomotion' at a wedding. 'Locomotion' only went as far as number two. Kylie was very badly wronged. Her song needs updating. It could be Kylie will finally get the number one she so richly deserved back in 1988, fully 30 years ago.
You might have noticed I changed the word locomotion to loco-commotion. The new words of the song go:
Everybody's doing a brand-new dance, now
(Come on baby, do the Loco-commotion)
I know you'll get to like it if you give it a chance now
(Come on baby, do the Loco-commotion)
I hope Kylie won't go looking for royalaties.