You’ll see him about 18 months before the expected election, fidgeting and wild-eyed. Questions about poster quantities to be ordered trigger a manic response: “ Posters? Sure why bother? The dogs in the streets know it. The. Seat. Is. Gone.”
“Everybody” knows that your man, that Shinner, is a dead cert to take the seat.
“A dead cert. Why are we even bothering to have the election? We might as well just award him the seat. Sure, I’m surprised he hasn’t got a running mate for a run at the last seat.”
The deputy can be seen slinking slope-shouldered into old folks homes, sighing and pondering as to how the constituency, whom he has loyally served for twenty years, could vote for a fella who used to blow up people. And what about his running mate? Sure what does he need two quotas for anyway? The old dears console him with a chocolate digestive and a nice sit-down.
Of course, he runs a full campaign, but not to win, perish the thought, sure that’s impossible. He’s just running to keep the party flag flying, really. Only in Ireland does a candidate brag about how badly he’s doing, but not too badly.
He grudgingly accepts, without anyone actually asking him the question, that he supposes it could be possible that he might squeeze into the fifth seat on the nineteenth count without reaching the quota if it were a nice day, and all the people he’s helped through the years turned out, but that the Shinner probably “ has it all locked up, with military precision,” he says ominously.
The day after polling day, the deputy comfortably takes the second seat on the third count, but assures everyone that it is a dead cert that this is the last time he’ll hold the seat, no doubt about it. His “safe as houses” running mate’s vote collapses and he loses his seat.