Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Ok Andy

In The Sportsman, Andy Gray had this to say about Roy Keane -

I've no doubt Keane will make a good boss. He's in the same mould as Daglish, Souness and Robson.

Ok, there's a problem with the statement above. Can anyone spot it?

Monday, August 28, 2006

Day of days

Well, how to describe yesterday in Croke Park.

Leitrim played a final in Croke Park. Something I never saw before and who knows when I'll see it again. The emotion of seeing men I know running out onto that pitch along with the size of the Leitrim support was nothing to the emotion of the defeat. We were, we are just not good enough and it kills me to say it. It's not like I didn't know this before yesterday but the final confirmed it. We just don't have enough players to choose from and unless there's an incredible baby boom soon, I can't see us going anywhere. I was crying at the full-time whistle.

Two things about it though. When Christopher Carroll was taken off yesterday, I stood and applauded what was probably his last appearance for Leitrim. The man has been a great servant to his county and he deserved to go out in Croke Park. It's just a shame that he didn't get a medal.

And the other thing was Declan Maxwell (another probable retiree). He almost swung it back for us. Unfortunately, the ball didn't get into him enough. His last point, the last point of the game was the finest score of the day. And when you consider the quality of the game that followed, that's some achievement.

Poor Leitrim. Apparently that's what they were saying on the TV. Boy, am I sick of hearing that.


Now... Mayo v. Dublin.

I have been to a lot of football matches. I've been to Croke Park on a number of occasions. Yesterday's semi-final was one of the finest matches I have ever had the privilege to be a part of.

The game had everything. How can I describe it without using cliches? The brilliant idea of Mayo to warm-up in front of the Hill. The ensuing reaction from the Dublin fans, footballers and coaches showed that they were rattled. It then took Dublin seventeen minutes to score!

By that stage, Mayo were four points up. To be honest, I thought they should have been further ahead; they had a couple of goal chances that they put over the bar. Dublin got into the game with a couple of points and then they got their first goal. We got a little worried but we knew it wasn't going to be easy.

Mayo fought on and went in for the break two points up. They were playing well. I'll never forget Trish at the blow-up for half-time.
- I'm dizzy, I'm dizzy, I'm dizzy in the head!

At the restart, Dublin predictably threw everything at Mayo. And what they threw, stuck. They ran at them and scored and scored including a goal from Jason Sherlock. Before we knew what, Mayo were losing by seven.

We've all seen this before. Mayo come to Croke Park. Light the place up for a half or more only to have it pulled from under them. They find themselves getting beat bad and they drop their heads. We've seen it again and again.

But not this time.

Whether it's Mickey Moran's tough Ulster touch or not, there's a difference to this Mayo team. They stood up and fought back. Two points, a goal and two more. They took the lead, Dublin equalised. Dublin went ahead so Mayo equalised. It went over and back until Ciaran
McDonald scored the winner and what a score it was.

Then the torment as we waited to hear the whistle. Dublin attacked and squandered their attacks. Mayo hung on and hung on. Dublin had another free. They missed it and then it was over.

I looked at Trish and she was nearly in shock. Dublin surely were. My head felt like it was going to come off. My voice was almost gone. I threw my head back and roared at the gods.

Mayo for Sam... will I ever learn?

Saturday, August 26, 2006

I am a subject of the Game

Tonight, I go home. Tomorrow, I go and worship at the altar of a fickle god. My Mecca. Connacht are playing Leinster in three games tomorrow; Roscommon v. Meath, Mayo v. Dublin and the big one - Leitrim v. Louth. (Don't heed the papers, Mayo v. Dublin isn't half as important as the Tommy Murphy Cup Final.)

Please, oh please let the Green & Gold of the smallest county in the galaxy... I can't even say it.

But I can shout it - COME ON LEITRIM!

Tuesday, August 22, 2006


I meant to post this ages ago. I've a court case coming up in Derry. I was due in court on the first Friday of this month. I arranged the day off and Cormac came up from Mohill on the Thursday to bring me to Derry the next day. However, that night, my solicitor called me and told me that
I wasn't needed until September.

So, we instead went to a show - The Blueraincoat's It's a Short Life; great stuff - and instead of Derry, the next day we went to the beach.

Much nicer than a courtroom.

"If I didn't know any better, I'd say she's laughing at me..."

And the man behind the camera...

And that's exactly how he looked on the day.

- No Bob, I don't think the pirate look is on it's way back.
- But we're going to the beach.
- So?
- Well, it's beside the sea.
- And?
- Pirates go in the sea.
- Bob, the bandana...
- You never let me have any fun!

Saturday, August 19, 2006

I have a brother...

... who, when my eye pops out accidently in a coffee shop, he'll run to Tesco and get me a new one.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Just out to get me

Mine is a strange job. The shop can be as quiet as the tomb, with me sitting at the till, twiddling my knees or such like. But as soon as I decide to do something non-work related, things go crazy. Just now, everything was quiet and under control so I decided to give my dad a call. I dialled the number and it rang. He picks up - Hello. And in they come through the door in a scrum. Seven - seven! - people from Spain. What could I do but hang up on the man?

You know, I sometimes feel that the business would run a lot smoother without customers. In fact, I'm almost sure there's a name for this attitude. Isn't it called the Sligo Business Initiative or something?

Were Leitrim playing yesterday?

Well, don't ask The Irish times.

From today's Irish Times Sports:

Leitrim ready for final hurdle

Tommy Murphy Cup Semi-finals/Leitrim 2-12 Carlow 0-8: After Niall Barrett and Mark Carpenter put Carlow two points in front after five minutes at Birr yesterday, Leitrim responded to lead 0-4 to 0-2 through points from Shane Foley, Donal Brennan, Noel Doonan and CiarĂ¡n Duignan.

Leitrim led at the break, 0-8 to 0-5, and effectively sealed victory 11 minutes from time with a Duignan goal for 1-11 to 0-7.

There was still time for Brennan to add another goal for Leitrim.

LEITRIM: C McCrann; D Reynolds, M McGuinness, D McHugh; F Holohan, B McWeeney, S Foley (0-1); N Doonan (0-1), C Carroll; C Regan (0-1), M Foley (0-1), B Prior; J Glancy (0-2), D Brennan (1-2), C Duignan (1-3). Subs: P McGuinness for Prior, D Beck for M Foley, M Greene for S Foley, D Maxwell (0-1) for Glancy.

CARLOW: G McGuill; B Hannon, S Murphy, J Ryan; B English, J Hayden, P Cashin; P Walsh, D Byrne; A Kelly (0-4, frees), T Walsh (0-1), P Hickey; J Kavanagh, M Carpenter (0-2), N Barrett (0-1). Subs: B Murphy for Barrett, W Minchin for Kavanagh.

Referee: A McAlynn (Derry).

© The Irish Times


From today's Irish Independent Sports:

Leitrim end a 12-year Croke Park hiatus

Leitrim 2-12

Carlow 0-8

Tommy Murphy Cup semi-final

THERE were scenes of jubilation following the final whistle as Leitrim returned to Croke Park for the first time since 1994 following an impressive victory over Carlow at Birr yesterday in the semi-final of the Tommy Murphy Cup.

Two second-half goals set up Leitrim for a meeting with Louth at headquarters in two weeks' time.

Carlow set the pace in the early stages with points from Niall Barrett and Mark Carpenter.

Shane Foley opened the Leitrim account after 11 minutes, and there then followed a sequence of seven further points between the 12th and 31st minutes, broken by a 20th-minute point from Carpenter.

As the green and gold dominated the exchanges, led by a potent strike force of Donal Brennan, James Glancy and Ciaran Duignan, Carlow stayed in touch with late points from Alan Kelly and Carpenter to leave the score 0-8 to 0-5 at half-time.

Colin Regan extended the Leitrim lead with a point from play five minutes into the second half, but a Tommy Walsh point reduced the arrears three minutes later as Carlow took the game to a nervous Leitrim.

Two further points from Brennan and Duignan kept Leitrim firmly in control going into the final stages.

Despite good work from Walsh and the excellent Mark Carpenter, the Leitrim defence, led by Michael McGuinness, Dermot Reynolds and Frank Holohan, denied Carlow several scores.

Their frustration gave way to dismay 11 minutes from time when a well-worked move by the Leitrim forwards culminated in a goal by Ciaran Duignan, whose initial shot struck the upright.

However, he collected the rebound and shot to the net to push his side 1-11 to 0-7 in front.

Again Carlow responded through a Carpenter point in the 62nd minute but it was Carlow's last score as Leitrim overran the Carlow defence, and their efforts were rewarded by a second goal from star forward Donal Brennan one minute into injury time.

SCORERS - Carlow: A. Kelly 0-4 (0-4f); M Carpenter 0-2, T Walsh, N Barrett 0-1 each. Leitrim: C Duignan 1-3, D Brennan 1-2, J Glancy 0-2, S Foley, N Doonan, C Regan, M Foley, D Maxwell 0-1 each.

CARLOW - G McGuill; B Hannon, S Murphy, J Ryan; B English, J Hayden, P Cashin; P Walsh, D Byrne; A Kelly, T Walsh, P Hickey; J Kavanagh, M Carpenter, N Barrett.

Subs: B Murphy for Barrett; W Minchin for Kavanagh.

LEITRIM - C McCrann; D Reynolds, M McGuinness, D McHugh; F Holohan, B McWeeney, S Foley; N Doonan, C Carroll; C Regan, M Foley, B Prior; J Glancy, D Brennan, C Duignan.

Subs: P McGuinness for Prior; D Beck for M Foley; M Greene for S Foley; D Maxwell (0-1) for Glancy.

REF - A McAlynn (Derry).


Was anyone from the Times even at the game?

Also, why does a limp Dublin v. Westmeath quarter-final warrant four articles in today's Monday Sports while the much better Laois v. Mayo match only gets two?

The Irish Times is a fine paper with a good sports content. Why not have a great sports content? I don't wanna have to buy the Indo again.


Well, I came back, down to Earth with a bang. Turns out that the GAA has scheduled our final for August 27th - second All-Ireland Semi Final day. That game is between Dublin and Laois or Mayo. Any game involving Dublin is a sell-out. The interest in that county is huge. I was well pissed off that we were billed for the same day. Tickets will be as scarce as hens teeth. I know that this was all arranged before anyone knew who would be playing who, so there's not a lot that can be done. But what I don't understand is why Central Council has moved the Meath V. Roscommon minor semi-final from this Sunday to the same day as our final. That's three games in Croke Park on a day that the Dublin match would sell-out the ground alone. No rhyme nor reason.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

I'm not alive; I'm something else

We did it! We did it! We did it! We're going to Croke Park. Leitrim 2-12 0-08 Carlow. Where do we go from here?

Oh boy, oh boy

Just heard that Leitrim are winning 08-05 at half-time. I'm so fucking nervous.


Playspace gets a forum - it's just over here.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Playspace #1

We had our first session of Playspace last night. It went very very well. Bob ran the show and did a fine job. The turn-out was good and the attitude was brilliant. I'm looking forward to seeing what comes from all this. Watch this (play) space.... Oh that's terrible.


Leitrim play Carlow on Sunday at 4pm in the semi-final of the Tommy Murphy Cup. Seventy minutes will decide if we go to Croke Park for our first ever final. I don't know if anyone is taking this serious but I sure am. I'd be there only for work and if we win... just try and stop me going to Dublin. C'mon the boys in green & gold!

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Where will this end?

A Lebanese civil defence worker carries the body of Iham Rmeity, (5) after she was extracted today from the rubble of a building in Chiyah, a residential neighbourhood in Beirut.

© 2006

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Playspace baby, yeah

Playspace begins on Thursday in the Sligo Youth Theatre Space at 8pm! Woohoo, I say, woohoo.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

The People's Republic of North Leitrim

I was talking to someone from Manorhamilton the other day about Leitrim football. She said that one of the reasons that we are so "shite" is that footballers in the north of the county feel it is unfair that they should have to travel down to Carrick to train. Now, ignoring that I felt it a little harsh to call ourselves shite, maybe she has a point. However, Carrick is the county town and that's where the county HQ are located. Also, because so many of the footballers work out of the county, the team often trains in Mullingar or Kells.

So, if having to travel is enough to stop North Leitrim players from playing for their county, you gotta ask yourself, do we even want them?

(Christ, I hope Meehan doesn't see this.)


I want to let you know about a new project called Playspace, starting Thursday 10th August. Playspace is going to be a regular gathering of people with an interest in theatre - actors, writers, directors, designers and so on. A workshop, a forum, a think-tank, an idea-space - essentially it will be a two-hour meet, probably every two weeks, where we will come together to create. Somewhere that we have the use of a stage, where we can play; kick ideas around; perform for each other; facilitate each other; offer ourselves as raw material for each other's games. To discuss and discover theatre, not just through talk, but through the practice of theatre. A session!

So - if you have specific avenues of theatre you want to explore and understand, bring them to Playspace. If you've never facilitated a workshop and you'd like to try, you can do it at Playspace. If you have an audition and you want a test audience for your performances, if you've written a piece and you want someone to play with it or if you have a strange idea that might work but doesn't yet justify a show - bring it to Playspace. And most of all, if you just want to keep your drama-brain moving, come to Playspace. Playspace will be defined by those who are in it.

Hopefully it will be an idea factory - a place where we spark off each other to create new thoughts, which, once they are solid enough to be projects, get kicked out the door to stand on their own.

I will be using this blog to let you know the where, when and how of Playspace until it gets off the ground. This info is also available on a new webpage at Bob's Google Page. Just click on Entropic Ensemble (the production company that this is happening under) and any up-to-date info on the project over the next couple of weeks will be there. You don't have to get on board right now either, if you'd prefer to leave us to our own devices for a while. But if you're interested, why not get in now and have a say in shaping the project? This is a very good time for the anyone in the amateur/semi-pro drama scene in Sligo to start making some new noise.

If you know anyone who you think should hear about this let me or Bob know. And if you have any thoughts suggestions or comments right now, send them our way.

Time to get busy.