Wednesday 22 November 2017

Paulie's BIAB - it's the same as GUBU, only the opposite

Billy Keane

Billy Keane

The thousands on the way back home from the meadows of Slane and The Electric Picnic will be texting and tweeting BIAB. Maybe the returning active retired outing from Momma will make BIAB their own.

Paul O'Connell has made a new word for us out of the drama of The Longest Day. Paul described Ireland's winning of the Six Nations on the greatest rugby day ever as "brilliant, incredible, amazing and bizarre."

BIAB Day was like the all day breakfast. Hours were changed in to minutes.

Seven hours of rugby was condensed like oranges into a fraction of its original self.

We were in danger of disappearing into the back of the sofa where the money falls down. One man told me it was the only day ever in 30 years of marriage his wife didn't ask him to get up and do something.

"Women hate to see a man sitting down," he complained.

"They'll always find some job for us. It might be putting out the bins or taking the dog for a walk."

"So how did you get away with it?" we asked.

"Ah sure wasn't she sitting down herself watching the rugby. She only got up twice in the seven hours to go to the toilet and she brought Michael Corcoran with her in case she missed anything."

We told him about the new word. "BIAB it was for sure," he agreed. "It's the same as GUBU, only the opposite."

'Brilliant' describes O'Connell himself. The Oxford dictionary tell us 'brilliant' comes from the French word for 'shining', Brilliant is "exceptionally clever or talented or outstanding, impressive or marvellous."

And our captain is all of these words and more.

'Incredible' is given as "so great or extreme as to be difficult to believe; extraordinary." The winning Six Nations came down to the last play on the last day for the second year running. Ireland somehow hold on once again for our first two in a row since 1949, 66 years ago. There were more turns than a week's work for a black pudding bender.

Twelve tries were scored in that last game between France and England. It was the day rugby was saved and the day all of our notions of reform were abandoned. There is nothing wrong with rugby if it's played right.

'Amazing' is "Causing great surprise or wonder; astonishing".

Ireland finished up with an out-half who had been ruled out with concussion for 12 weeks yet Jonathan Sexton kept going until his legs couldn't keep up with his heart. He put two misses in the delete bin and went on to kick amazingly in the last few minutes when his body went in to spasm.

Sean O'Brien missed a year of rugby but he never missed a maths class. O'Brien went the shortest way, which was straight ahead. His carries and his try lifted the team and the spirits of a nation.

Conor Murray carried an injury in to the championship but never gave in to it. His kicking and his tackling were of the highest order but above all we loved his courage and his fortitude.

Cian Healy too was side-lined for months on end, but he ordered his body to obey his ferocious will. We will bend the elbow to toast Jamie Heaslip's slight pull on the right elbow of Stuart Hogg when it seemed sure the Scot would kill the dream.

Jamie was the victim of a cowardly French kick and as result was as undercooked as steak tartare, yet somehow he managed to make the tackle right at the end.

Cruel

Luke Fitz too has had a cruel run with injuries. He was in more plays than Cyril Cusack and every one was acted out brilliantly.

And Peter O' Mahony took more hits than the table at a particularly tense game of 25 or 31. He carried every blow that struck him and had an incredible second half. The wounded won it for us.

'Bizarre' is "very strange". That sums up the French who ran their ball from their own line when we wanted it kicked over Twickenham's highest stand.

And who kicked the ball out for us? It was our new Gary Mackay. Rory Kockott from France and South Africa, you'll never ever have to pay for a pint in Ireland. And your promotion code? You guessed it, Rory. It's 'BIAB'.

Coach Joe was Teacher Joe, long ago in New Zealand. If one of his pupils suggested Joe would be coaching Ireland to the first two in a row in 66 years, the boy would be told to write out 100 lines. "I must not make bizarre statements."

The Master is the reason we are top of the class. The Master, Joe, is the word we reserve here in Ireland for truly gifted teachers. Thank you Master for bringing so much joy to a nation, very much in the need of it.

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