No matter where in the world you happen to be, I think you will understand that there is a kind of fundamentalism that goes hand in hand with sport. We are surrounded by radicals of all sorts, you don’t have to look too far.
Remember the movie Blazing Saddles? If you don’t then shame on you. Specifically I am referring to the scene in the saloon with John Hillerman?
(FYI – that’s Higgins from Magnum P.I. who’s a Texan and not an Englishman. Mind blown);
Anyway, in the scene he waxes lyrical about how: “In Paris France, even as we speak, Louis Pasteur has devised a new vaccine that will obliterate anthrax once and for all.” A great, great scene in a great movie.
Click here to see the scene btw. You know you want to.
I felt it was worth another look at this post what with a replay of the ‘All Ireland Football Final’ approaching. It’s the pinnacle of the Irish sporting calendar (sorry hurlers but you know it’s true), I am frequently reminded of the movie at times like this, particularly when I’m down the pub (hence the ‘frequent’ part).
Please note that this is in essence a true story that I have sat through on more than one occasion, often with a clenched fist. It takes the form of a short play. The setting is any pub and every pub. Feel free to insert your own national or international locales here and your own competition and teams (I’m sure it applies equally to The Superbowl). It will all work just as well.
The bar is busy. At the counter sit a few friends enjoying a drink and a chat. There are a number of others hovering around, some flittering in and out of the conversation.
Dublin Man: You know of course lads, that Handel’s Messiah premiered in Dublin. Back in the day.
Mayo Man: That’s right Tom, I remember reading that once upon a time, and you may have brought this up before today, more than once.
Dublin Man: Yes, in 1742. At the New Music Hall in Fishamble Street. 26 boys and five men took part. Oh to have been there.
Leitrim Man: Amazing what’s happened in this country, it really is.
Dublin Man: Nice part of town, a lot of good coffee around there too.
Mayo Man: Coffee, that’s all you think about Tom, that and Guinness.
Dublin Man: Ahh Guinness, shur you can’t beat it!
A local sticks his head in.
Local: Aha but you won’t be saying that on Sunday!
Dublin Man: Haha, that’s right Jack, now f*@k off. Where were we lads?
Mayo Man: You were blathering on about Dublin – as usual.
Leitrim Man: Leave him off for God’s sakes. I don’t think I could stand another earful of that ‘gene therapy’ and all that scientific research mumbo jumbo he’s at down the lab, no offence man, but your job puts me right to sleep.
Dublin Man: None taken, because I know that science is important, and I know that Dublin is full of interesting history. Unlike your own place.
Leitrim Man: I’ll have you know that Amy & Brian got married in Leitrim.
Mayo Man: Jaysus, it’s on now, beat that.
Dublin Man: I can beat that.
Another Local: Aha, but you won’t be saying that on Sunday.
Dublin Man: Jesus Christ!
A fight breaks out. There are at least three fractured skulls but no drink is spilled. No one attends a hospital and one is barred.
I await my Tony Award.