Five things you need to know about the wild men of Mayo
GET ready for the invasion. The All Ireland semi-final will see an influx of a wild tribe from the West know as Mayo men. They may also bring a few women and children to the city in their pursuit of the Sam Maguire Cup.
Here are five things you and Brogan and company need to know about the the Tribe from the West.
1. Mayo men can infiltrate any defence: They have sneaked into the capital and now run the bloody country. There's a fella called Enda Kenny, no mean footballer in his day, who is, I am reliably informed, our leader. Enda also reliably informed me that Vladimir IIlyich Lenin played at centre-half forward for Mayo while on a holiday from the Russian revolution. Which brings us to the second point that the boys in blue would want to be aware of.
2. Mayo men make things happen: Imagine if I said to you I wanted to build an airport on a bog that was prone to fog and that it was miles from any main population centre? And then I said I want the taxpayers to pay for it -- you'd laugh me out the door right ?
Well this is exactly what Monsignor James Horan achieved with his vision for Knock Airport. The Virgin Mary is alleged to have touched down there in 1879 but it's nothing to the miracle that Horan pulled off when he got the State to subsidise his airport. The Monsignor later died after travelling on a pilgrimage to Lourdes. The Knock Airport website informs me that his was the first funeral to fly into Knock. It appears that even when they are going, Mayo men are coming.
3. Mayo men can pull off some sly tricks: Take one Padraig 'Pee' Flynn -- this venerable son of Mayo made a nice sum of money for himself courtesy of a Sligo-born builder known as Tom Gilmartin. Flynn was a FF Minister who strongarmed Tom into donating IR£50,000 for the party. Fine -- except Tom didn't know that Flynn then trousered the money for himself and the party never saw it. Okay, Dublin does have its own rogue's gallery but the footballers will want to watch out for any shady moves.
4. Mayo men have trouble scoring: This is interesting news for Dublin women and the footballers. You are reading this and wondering if you'll go out tonight what with all these fine barechested Mayo men circulating about with half a heifer under their arms. Well forget about it. I've been watching Mayo footballers for 20 years and if there is one defining quality it is their guaranteed inability to convert a scoring chance. This has transferred from the sporting to the social field.
My spies in Copper Face Jacks tell me that the guys holding up the bar without women tend be to either Mayo men or Cavan men who are too mean to buy a pint for a lady.
5. Mayo men can scream: Dublin fans beware. I would ask you to -- if you can get a good translator -- to listen to Minister Michael Ring, Mayo man and orator extraordinaire. Ring has the great knack of overshadowing whatever it is he is talking about. Witness his homage to Katie Taylor at the Olympics.
Ring's speech starts with a low strangulated sound and swiftly mutates into a blood curling howl not unlike that of a wolf giving birth. If the Mayo fans are anything like it, the Dubs will be drowned out.
Finally, I have to say Mayo men and women are good skins. Over the years when Kerry were always beating Mayo, they took their defeat with grace and honour.
So despite some of the blips mentioned above Dubliners can expect to meet a great bunch, who will sing for their team and their supper in good style.
Oh and this bunch of Mayo footballers can actually score.