Jason OMahony - Irish political blogger, Irish politics, EU politics

Jason’s Diary.

Just a few general observations today. Check out Greg Bowler’s excellent piece here on what happens if we vote No. I’m not sure I quite agree with everything in it, but it’s a fair picture.

The Spoofer’s Guide to the Fiscal Treaty (Now with extra Ganley!) is available here.

I see a poll recently announced that a substantial section of voters say that they still have little or no knowledge of the treaty. In the usual infantilisation (A word introduced to me by Pat Hynes for which I’m very grateful) of Irish voters no pollster seems to ask those voters what they have actually done to inform themselves? Both the Yes and No sides are pumping out information, as is the referendum commission. I’d love a pollster to quiz those voters as to what they have actually done to inform themselves. If you’re not going to bother informing yourself you can go to hell.

Finally, a rant. Yeah, I know, shock, horror etc. What is it about the Irish and sunshine and litter? Seriously, who stands up in a park or on a beach, surveys the empty wrappers and cans, and walks away without feeling any responsibility whatsoever for putting them in a bin? And don’t start me on “the bins were full” crap. Bring it home with you. It’s your crap. This is one area where this liberal would happily horsewhip the bastards. We have to live here, God has given us a pretty beautiful country which other people are willing to pay to visit, and we don’t need to be throwing obstacles in our own way.



St. John Huxtable (1930-2009) Performance Undertaker.

Posted by Jason O on May 29, 2012 in Not quite serious.

Huxtable having been expelled from the Kildare St. Club for "dressing like a ruffian."

Huxtable having been expelled from the Kildare St. Club for "dressing like a ruffian."

To St. John Huxtable, death was a cause for celebration of one’s life, and it was that extraordinary passion that made him a noted figure in the Dublin undertaking trade for years.

It was Huxtable, operating, as indeed do a disproportionate number of the trade, from Dublin’s Liberties, who devised the concept of the personalised burial service. Not for him the staid murmurings of the Latin mass, but instead a ceremony that reflected the life of the deceased. It was he who, for example, gave the option of burying a deceased coal merchant in one of his own coal bags. The sight of the bag being carried up the aisle, corpse inside, on the shoulder of a burly colleague, would bring many a tear to a family member, as well as the occasional scream when the odd lifeless arm would slip out of the bag.

Huxtable was incredibly sensitive to the needs of bereaved families, and his willingness to accommodate their needs got him an international reputation. In the 1980s he was nearly killed securing the corpse of a much loved Dutch windmill operator to one of the sails of his windmill, so that he could view the sparse Dutch landscape he had loved so much. Admittedly, the sight of a dead Dutchman occasionally appearing to hover over the tops of trees did cause an unfortunate spike in traffic accidents, but the family were deeply grateful. 

It wasn’t all success for Huxtable. In 1972, an attempt to fire a former uniformed member of Eoin O’Duffy’s blueshirts from a cannon into the sea, as per his dying wishes, went disastrously wrong. A combination of changing high winds and over-enthusiastic use of gun powder resulted in a burning fascist cadaver being fired through the bedroom window of the Chief Rabbi of Ireland, an incident which soured all concerned. 

In later years, following his retirement, Huxtable focussed on improving the trade. Always concerned about the wellbeing of his employees, he strived to create a self propelled remote control casket which would save his employees from potential back injury. The initial testing resulted in a fiasco when the casket  malfunctioned and was last seen barrelling down the North Circular Road at high speed, before being machine gunned by an off duty Special Branch officer at Hanlon’s Corner. As one passerby commented, on viewing the bullet riddled coffin: “Ah Jaysus! Hasn’t he suffered enough already?” A sentiment that would very much sum up Huxtable’s attitude towards those in his care.  




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