'D' please Bob, just make it an easy one
Thursday: We had guests for dinner tonight. As we sat, post-dessert, reminiscing about pleasant memories of summers when we still carried puppy fat, the good woman got up and went into the next room. She returned with a dusty old box that I recognised from many moons ago. 'Let's play a game of Blockbusters,' she chirped. And the theme tune began ringing in my ears.
Looking at me from the distinctive blue cover was Bob Holness (a quick Google search informs me he exited the world stage in January 2012 at the age of 83) and once the predictable 'I'll have an ABC please Bob' gags were exhausted, we were split into teams. A highly competitive round of Blockbusters, fuelled by swiftly flowing wine, got underway.
The highlight of the game was served courtesy of the letter 'D'. It was directed towards my team and the good woman, a member of the opposition party, couldn't keep the look of glee from her face as she read it out. 'What D became Lord Beaconsfield in 1876?' she smirked, not giving us a prayer. My team-mate and I sat deflated before switching our brains into second gear.
Anyone whose surname began with the letter D was put forward – the most obscure suggestion being Rodney Dangerfield, the actor that wreaked havoc on a golf club in the film Caddyshack. Then, when all seemed lost and the good woman insisted she needed a final answer, our train of thought turned political. We started banging out names from the era – Bismarck, Lloyd George, Parnell until we eventually happened on a D. D for Disraeli. Disraeli. Disraeli! The good woman's facial expression changed, until she uttered those words that means you've hit the nail on the head. 'You must have seen the answer...' While we high-fived and hoped they wouldn't ask us what it was Disraeli actually did.
Saturday: We were sitting having dinner at a wedding reception just outside Letterkenny today when I noticed the good woman still had her fastinator on. 'Your hat is lovely,' I said to her, wondering if she was going to wear it for the rest of the night. 'It's tradition that you leave it on until the mother of the bride takes hers off,' she informed me.
I looked around for the mother of the bride and spotted her sitting at the top table blowing on a spoonful of vegetable soup, still wearing her hat. I had a quick look around at the other tables too and sure enough, many of the ladies still had their hats on. It's a tradition I hadn't heard of before, but found very amusing. 'She's playing with their heads,' I chuckled, and continued with my food.
* A poll has found one in five men are happy to send their wife downstairs when they can hear strange noises during the night.
* Norman Griffiths (63) is revealed as the most nagged man in Britain, with his wife Julie (43) threatened with jail if she doesn't leave her hen-pecked partner be. It could never happen here.
* Legend has it the Mayo football team was cursed by a priest when they failed to show proper respect while encountering a funeral cortege on their way to Ballina after their 1951 All-Ireland win – not a very forgiving act by a man of the cloth.
* Breaking Bad brought home its first Best Drama Emmy award. The very first episode is hard to beat.
* Researchers have discovered the average person forgets things on almost 1,500 occasions every year.
New Ross Standard