Friday, May 30, 2003

Just one last thing. Go and see 25th Hour. It's the best movie I've seen all year.
Seals at Tawin Bay by Jack B. Yeats. I visited Tawin island for the first time a few days ago while driving the backroads outside Oranmore. It's an interesting and charming place of which I was not previously aware. I expect there is some history to the island. This link - concerning the life of Eamon DeValera - makes reference to Dev spending some time at a "Tawin Gaelic College, of the Galway shore". Where is that now? Perhaps it was located at the old national school at the very end of the island or perhaps it somewhere else entirely?

In other news - it's a long weekend here this weekend and I'm off to Dubland to see the Boss do his thing. But I'll try and remember - there's more to life than cars and girls.
Front page story in today's Irish Times:- Committee chairman to speak to senator about her conduct. I didn't realise it was the 'silly season' - the annual slow news doldrums - already.

Wednesday, May 28, 2003

How to Fake A Hard Day at the Office. Obviously, it goes without saying that I do not need to do this.
Here's a preview of the new kit for the Mayo Ladies Gaelic football team.

Tuesday, May 27, 2003

Monday, May 26, 2003

Slashdot - Seeking The Source For Ireland's E-Voting System. It appears that the Dept. of the Environment doesn't even have a copy of the source-code for the country's brand spanking new electronic voting system. Not good.

Friday, May 23, 2003

How to make friends by telephone.
I've never heard of her before but according to the BBC one Erin McKeown is playing the Roisin Dubh on July 16th. Evidently, she's a 25 year old singer from Virginia who has already released a few albums. I've listened to the samples of her music on her website and I must say I like like her songs. So, a gig to pencil in my calendar methinks.
We love the Eurovision song contest here at Smoke Signals. This year I'm betting on the Belgian cod techno-folk entry to win (simply because cod techno-folk is alway popular with our Euro brothers and sisters even when, as in this case, it is sung in an imaginary language - never did the Cocteau Twins any harm). Second place will be this piece of shit from Austria. And I forsee null points for Mickey Joe. Of course, there's always the possibility that TATU's teen lesbo antics might win the day. Sure, what do I know anyway?

Thursday, May 22, 2003

This is excellent - Are your religious beliefs rationally consistent? Test them with Battleground God. I was awarded the TPM Medal of Distinction - taking no direct hits and biting only two bullets.

Wednesday, May 21, 2003

A-list web-celeb James Lileks takes a wee dig at Ireland in today's Bleat ; ".. every time I reach for a Guinness I remember that the Irish were neutral in WW2". Well, at least we weren't neutral for Operation Iraqi Freedom eh?
Campaigners for Scot's Gaelic are to lobby Microsoft to develop a MS Office spellchecker for the ancient language. apparently it's not as big a job as it first seems since it can utilise much of the work already done for the Irish spell checker.

Monday, May 19, 2003

The leprechaun watch webcam from Co. Tipperary. They would be better off spending more time at the hurling.

Thursday, May 15, 2003

Last Saturday, I purchased the new records by Vic Chesnutt and Arab Strap and also a a double cd compilation of music by the late great Ted Hawkins. The Vic Chesnutt album 'Siver Lake' is a grower - pleasant enough but first listens only reveal a couple of songs that can stand in the company of his best work. Still, one real gem per album is all I ever expect from him (and all I need, for the best Vic songs are worth twenty of a lesser artist's). Regarding the brilliantly titled Arab Strap album, 'Monday at the Hug and Pint' , it's interesting but also requires a few more listens. Not as mellow as 'Elephant Shoe' (an album I keep coming back to) but probably all the better for it. The Pitchfork reviewer enthused over it a few days ago. And finally, as far as Ted Hawkins' music goes - all I can say is he was the genuine article and "Watch your Step" is the best song that never made it to No.1 on the back of a TV ad.
The Soulmate Calculator. It seems I only need to meet 28 single American women before I find my soulmate. Who said I was picky?
A man convicted of dealing drugs from his house in Swinford has been told that he must either sell out and move back to England or serve a nine month prison sentence. Is this constitutional?
From the Jordan Times: Iraq - deconstructed rather than rebuilt.

Wednesday, May 14, 2003

The Apathetic Online Journal Entry Generator. Via DMMC. And also this story, which should be of great interest to Brendan and his troupe of polyglot monkeys.
A great piece on 'Fear Factor'. The writer is on the money when he states.."the stunt that makes "Fear Factor" great, traditionally the second of the three stunts, is what the Food Network would be like if William S. Burroughs were in charge." Of course, I only ever watch it for that bit.

Tuesday, May 13, 2003

If like me, you have an interest in local history, you will find this collection of extracts from old Irish newspapers absolutely fascinating. It seems that not a lot has changed in Limerick in 180 years judging by the following story from 1823 :-
LIMERICK, Feb. 5-On Sunday night, a farm house on the lands of Brianstown,
in the North Liberties of this City, was visited by a large party of
ruffians who entered the house, and after removing the care-taker, his wife,
and such furniture as belonged to him, deliberately set the house on fire,
which was shortly consumed. Mr. RUSSELL had lately set the farm to a man
from the neighbourhood of Park, who had not yet taken the possession of it.
Immediately after the fire, a party of Captain DROUGHT's very efficient
Police proceeded to the spot, where they made prisoners of some suspicious
person found straggling on the road.

A good selection of in-studio recordings broadcast on Seattle radio station KEXP.

Friday, May 09, 2003

The history of the pike in Ireland. This magnificent predator is a much maligned fish so it's good to see evidence that it is indeed a species which is indigenous to Ireland.
Blogger forces Irish domain registry into sunlight. Fair plays to him. €69.95 for a 1 year registration is a total rip-off. I would not be surprised to find that somebody is creaming money out of the operation.

Thursday, May 08, 2003

'Desktop Texting' comes to Irish Republic. Will it still allow me to send the 500 free messages per month I can currently send on the 02 website?
Into the Clash? Check out this site. His concert bootleg MP3s can be downloaded from here - just register on the message board. Via the link-tastic blog The Ultimate Insult.
Which Country of the World are You?
brought to you by Quizilla
Switzerland -
A neutral power for as long as most can remember,
it has avoided war for several centuries.
However, it is still considered highly advanced
and a global power.

Wednesday, May 07, 2003

News from everybody's favourite Iraqi blogger. It's a fascinating report of life inside Baghdad during it's recent liberation.
That was the shitiest weather for a May bank holiday weekend I can remember. Particularily so since I spent it on a boat on the river Shannon. Between the drenchings and navigating the wild waters of Lough Ree we managed to find time for a drink or two. Big nights were had in Carrick, Athlone and Longford, pool games were played in Tarmonbarry, snooker was watched in Lanesborough and the convivial atmosphere of the Hodson bay hotel, yucky lasagne was feasted on in Roosky, and boats were run aground in Lough Boderg. A great weekend and sod the weather.