Celebrity Diary: I can't afford a few days off work to build a snowman ... I've got celebrities to slag off
IT'S been a busy week of insulting guests like Lisa Murphy and Mary Coughlan, avoiding the wrath of Pat Kenny, putting the final touches to my live shows at Vicar Street and, of course, surviving the snow!
The whole country seems to have shut down but, to be honest, I have tried not to let it affect me too much.
I don't drive so at least I have no concerns about slipping and sliding around the roads like everyone else. I've been getting around on foot and largely it hasn't impacted my life a great deal as I don't have time to take a few days off from work to go out and build a snowman.
We did have a bit of a momentary panic on Monday night when we were due to record this week's episode of my RTE series Wagons' Den, though. As the weather was quite bad, we were starting to get emails from people early in the day saying they wouldn't be able to make it to RTE studios to attend, so I kind of did a mass call out on my Facebook page and in the end we had a completely full house.
I have to admit, I was a bit nervous when I was standing outside the studio for Pat Kenny's show The Frontline dressed in my Sheila Chic gear and even his audience was looking a bit empty. I was joking that we would have to rob his guests for our show. Little did I realise he was standing behind me for all that and heard me saying, "Jesus, I hope ours doesn't look that bad."
Luckily he just laughed and didn't take offence. It's funny, you can get away with murder when you're dressed up as one of the characters. We had some great guests on Tuesday night's show; Lisa Murphy, celebrity solicitor Gerald Kean's other half, and singer Mary Coughlan were both on as our Wagons. We also had Jamie Afro from last year's X Factor.
I did give Lisa Murphy a bit of a hard time but she took it all in jest. I have to say she's a really lovely lady and I have a lot of time for her. Since I was in the guise of Sheila and can get away with pretty much anything, I decided to be bold and bring up her ex Michael Flatley.
I did it in a tongue in cheek way and she took it very well thankfully. I said something about her having an "orange ex" and she was definitely taken aback for a minute but she recovered well.
The singer Mary Coughlan was great as well. We've had some very funny guests since we started, including Pippa O'Connor and Leigh Arnold, who I shocked a little bit when I started talking about her own ex-boyfriend Marcus Sweeney.
Initially there was a bit of a mixed reaction from critics, but they seem to have thawed out in the last week or so.
I try not to worry about it too much. Obviously I'm only human and it does get to you sometimes. I think of it as being similar to carrying a baby for nine months, going through the painful birth and then people telling you 'That's a hideous child you've got there'. This is my first time to work with Brian Dowling and we've been getting on fantastically well. The biggest problem we find is that we keep making each other laugh while we're on air. We usually go for a few drinks after the show to unwind but we didn't manage it last Monday as we're both hectic with work.
In Brian's case he's busy preparing for his Christmas panto, Beauty And The Beast at the Tivoli Theatre. They're having a celebrity guest theme this year where they have a different personality on stage with them every night so no doubt I'll be roped in at some stage. I couldn't fit in Monday night drinks as I'm preparing for my live shows at Vicar Street next weekend. It's called The Hack-Of-Ya tour and I'll be kicking off on Thursday, December 9 and also on stage on Friday, Saturday and Sunday night.
Three out of four of the dates are sold out which is always good news in the current climate. Now I'm just praying that the weather will have cleared up by then.
I decided to go along to see Tommy Tiernan's gig at Vicar Street on Wednesday night as I was worried he might be looking for an audience with the weather. Naturally he wasn't. I don't think anything would keep people away from his shows, he's great.
By the looks of things I'll be battening down the hatches with the rest of the country for the weekend. It means I'll have no distractions.
I'll be working away on Wagons' Den right up until December 20 and then I'm looking forward to going home to Leitrim for a nice long holiday to see the Mammy and the rest of the clan. I had been thinking about getting my mam, Maureen, on the show but I think I'll wait until the second series, fingers crossed there will be one, for that.
I don't think even I could go as far as slagging my own mother off on national TV!