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Chocolate ain’t good for you…

moused killed in a trap

Exit stage left, pet rodent…

As usual, I had mixed feelings this morning when I found out that our stowaway pet had seen an abrupt end to its cruise on the LÉ Mememe2U.

On the one hand, I cannot help but feel sorry for the little bugger. And there was much protesting from Mimi, who tried really really hard to make a case for the cute little rodent (“but Papa, it’s only trying to make a living, it’s only living off crumbs and little bits of food, it’s not bothering us at all”). And I totally see her point. It is a cute little creature, healthy, with a shiny coat, and shiny jet black eyes, and lovely little whiskers.

On the other hand, there is one word that does not have echoes of cuteness for me: infestation. And there is such a thing as an overdose of cuteness. When the cuteness reproduces at an alarming rate.

So farewell, cute little rodent. I know that the end was quick. Those mouse traps are terribly effective at achieving what they were designed to do. What a timeless, classic design too.

You had the choice between the cheese and the chocolate. Your sweet tooth was your Achilles’ heel.

You also helped me to reinforce a point to Mimi, the great defender of small cute rodents (she bought you at least three extra weeks of careless crumbs hoovering chez mememe2U): chocolate ain’t good for you.

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Peking order


The street light outside my local Chinese is a busy social space for the gulls of the neighbourhood.
They’re constantly fighting for the top spot: the bulb cover.
They have a very clear pecking order. The biggest and fittest gets the spot.
Perhaps not the most observant though.
Or he would have seen the live wire poking out.

Xue Tao’s first cousin does electrical nixers…

And a crispy duck for table 12, crispy duck for table 12!  



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Pinot Noir – douleurs et fièvre


When the parabuprospirine cocktail of chemical shite failed to dent the pain in my banjaxed knee (you can’t dent a dent), I had to resort to an old remedy passed on to my great grandfather by a homeopath from Burgundy.

It worked. Especially the Californian analgesic. Wow, the De Loach Extra Strength. Can’t think of many pains that can resist that one.

The cat-sitting for Pinot Noir arrangement has worked wonderfully well.
The cat was fed, watered, entertained, let out in the morning and retrieved in the evening.
The Pinot Noir was sniffed, twirled in the glass, examined, sipped, gargled, swallowed, and satisfied clicks of the tongue were produced.

Barter is smarter!

art, death, dejection, dublin, dun laoghaire, ireland, life lesson, photography, the importance of living by one's principles, unlucky

Lost for words


I strongly disapprove of the expression Great War.
It was grand at best if you ask me. And it pales in comparison with the Mighty Massacre. Or the Brilliant Genocide. Or the Deadly Holocaust. Or the Sick Pandemic. Or the Rapid Tsunami. Or the Truly Fucking Excellent Second World War (now, that one was incredibly cool).

I have over a number of lunchtime breaks visited and revisited this brilliantly put together exhibition in the Dun Laoghaire town hall.
One session was not enough to take it all in. Because

a- I have the attention span of an ADHD butterfly
b- It was all too depressing for one lunch break, squeezed between a conference call and a blame storming session

Having grown up within one hour’s drive of Verdun and its acres upon acres of perfectly aligned white crosses and meticulously arranged ossuary, I had failed to realise just how far-reaching the consequences of this ignominy were. Perhaps the term world war should have been a clue…

All the villages in my native Lorraine and everywhere in France have their Monument aux Morts, as I am sure their German counterparts have, with the long list of names representing a large chunk of a whole generation of young (and not so young) lads who lost their lives in the surreal but all too nefarious experiment that was the trenches war.

The realisation that there was also a big contingent of young lads and a few lasses from the Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown area who saw the last spark of their twenty odd years fizzle out slowly in the mud of Ypres or go in a flash at Gallipoli was a big surprise.

I never expected their number to be so significant.

There were families from Dun Laoghaire, Deansgrange, Monkstown who lost one, two, some of them three (!!!) sons in a far away war.
The posters of the recruiting officers were a harrowing read. There is an incredible sadness inherent to these pictures of young lads going away on a bit of an expedition, with a big smile on their face and butterflies in their stomach, a mixture of fear and excitement at the thought of going away from home for the first time.

What cruel irony there is in the discrepancy between their 1915 youthful innocence and the knowledge for the 2014 reader of the Dark Beast that was awaiting them in the Marne, in Belgium, in Turkey.

What a waste. What a crime against humanity. Against a section of humanity. A whole generation.

I reject patriotism.
Patriotism is a celebration of the brilliance of the time/place/nationality we are at right now. A justification for the past massacres. A systematic rejection of the what-could-have been (shudder of utter horror). A reviling of the evil that could be us, had the Other won. With always a notion that the sacrifice of Ours was not in vain.

Lost in our lust for the purchase of the next iPad, our celebration of our singular greatness, we tend to forget that our needs, traits, habits are pretty much universal. The nationality around them is but a flimsy packaging.

We want more than the neighbour. We want it now. At all cost.
Because we are worth it. And the Other isn’t.
And we are prepared to defend what We have accumulated over the centuries with our lives.
Against the Other.

That murdering bastard.

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Like herpes in a pot



Not just any cold sore.
A classier type of cold sore.

Thanks a mil to all of you who have already voted for my blog post on testicular hypothermia, a subject that deserves to be known by a broader audience.
If you haven’t yet done so, please please help me to give it another little nudge.
The link is here (, do a search for “around”, the name of the blog is “In and Around Dublin”. Select and vote. Thank you. No, really, thank you!