Food & Drink

Bock Worn Out From Overdoing It

The excesses of the weekend have finally caught up with me.

A train ride to Dublin to see the Wrinklies perform, followed by late-night carousing (chez Paddy), followed by another train journey home, just in time to go on another carousing session to help a Warrior Princess celebrate a big birthday.

It just catches up, you know? It just does.

I’m shattered from the excess of it all, and it’s not as if there were any Latvian hookers, brown mescaline or even Wild Turkey involved.


I can’t even write the usual meaningless drivel here for you to sneer at. That’s what staying up late singing will do to you.

My advice is, whatever about the mescaline, the Latvians and the whiskey, stay away from the late singing if you want to be all right in a few days.

Food & Drink Religion

Great Friday

For years, we have celebrated Good Friday by heading up to Lough Derg and going across the lake on boats, from Garrykennedy to Mountshannon. In keeping with tradition, we bring large amounts of beer, several musical instruments and a firm intention to have a bit of crack which, you’d have to say is a lot better than that miserable old religion shit.

Well and good. What a fine way to celebrate the springtime resurrection of Nature.

Yesterday went according to plan and we travelled across on three motor-boats. We settled in on the quayside at Mountshannon and, in the usual glorious Good Friday sunshine, we stayed there all day and all night long singing songs and slugging beer.

How bad?

Food & Drink

It’s Such a Perfect Day

OK. This is better. I’m finally beginning to recover from the annual Invasion of the Welsh Fuckers. I went for a walk today with Jimbo and the dogs (his and mine), through the University and down by the river at Plassey. Lovely. The water level has receded a good bit since the flooding and the old canal on the Clare side is a distinct waterway again instead of simply being part of the general wetness.

I was surprised that Jimbo didn’t appear at our other pub of choice on Sunday night, after the match, and I said so.

I was surprised you didn’t appear at our other pub of choice on Sunday night.

Are you fuckin crazy? he said. I walked into a fuckin mad-house. Welsh fuckers dancing on tables. John ‘n’ Murty playing Tom fucking Jones, for fucksake. Drunken fuckers everywhere. People laughing and hugging each other. It was horrible.

Yeah, I said. I could see how that would repulse you.

No, seriously, he said. I was sober.

Suddenly, it all made sense.

Sober? I ventured.

Stone cold, he confirmed.

Jesus, I whispered in admiration. You walked into our other pub of choice sober? On Sunday night? After the rugby match? Against Wales?

Yes, he replied. Yes, yes and yes.

Jesus, I repeated.

I know, he reassured me. I could see you and the Vulva Painter at the bar.

Yeah, I said. We were hammered.

No shit? he said.

Yeah. We went out to see the game and we just didn’t make it home.

I know, he sympathised. So you’ve been in bed ever since, I suppose, like any sensible human.

Ehh, no, I had to concede. You see, Scunthorpe were on the telly last night.

Scunthorpe? On the telly?

Yeah. Sky Sports. They were playing Bristol City. Fuck it, I had to see the game and the only place I thought it might be on was the Bank.

So you went to the pub again, right?

Right. What could I do?


I called the Vulva Painter again, and he came in. We watched it together. It was great, and Scunthorpe won a thrilling encounter and Billy Sharp scored his 21st goal of the season on his 21st birthday. Isn’t that great? I even cried.

As you would, said Jimbo. So how do you feel now?

Well, I replied, Are you familiar with the works of Lou Reed?

In a passing way, he acknowledged.

Do you remember the Blue Mask album?

Yes, he said. I hated it.

Good, I replied. There was a song on it called Waves of Fear.

Yes, Jimbo nodded.

Waves of revulsion, sickening sight.

That’s right, said Jimbo, but Lou Reed is well known for hating rugby and soccer.

True, I agreed.




Plassey House

kick it on

Food & Drink

Drink driving

It seems that the tough new police action against drinking and driving has pretty much killed the rural pub, which was the last place left for people to congregate, now that the post offices are nearly extinct and people are afraid to go to the church in case a big hairy priest jumps out from behind a statue and bones them up the arse while they’re not looking.

This, not surprisingly, is leading to isolation and loneliness for many old people and, to combat the problem, it seems the government is going to provide free transport so that old people living in rural areas can go to the pub at night and have a drink. That’s what it says here in today’s paper. I’m reading it now.

Several reactions crowd in upon me at exactly the same time, all fighting for life.

What? Free buses to the pub? They will in their arse! Is this a joke? Why can’t the pubs pay for it? It won’t happen. Pull the other one. Now there’s a pre-election stunt if I ever saw one. Gobshite politicians.

But the reaction that rises above all the other, floating blithely to freedom as the others shake their fists at it, is this: Why?

Not content with forcing smokers out into the freezing rain for a cigarette, our super-PC government has now ordained that even two pints will turn your average driver into a slobbering double-visioned killing machine. Look, the theory behind this law is that alcohol diminishes our capacity to drive safely, which is an undisputed fact. Diminished from what level, though? And to what level? You could walk into a pub in reasonable physical and mental condition, drink two pints, go out and get arrested. Meanwhile, the guy next to you who only had a coffee, can be as blind as a bat, with a dodgy leg, a withered arm, crippled with arthritis, a bad back, a stiff neck, and as stupid as a White House full of Bushes. When the cops pull him in, he’s blameless. Despite the fact that he shouldn’t be allowed to walk, never mind drive, he can continue on his way, endangering everybody within a forty-mile radius.

Why? It’s insane.

If we were going to be logical about it, there should be a change in the law. By all means ban drink driving, but only if you also ban complete idiots from getting behind a wheel.

Excuse me, Sir. Would you mind blowing into this bag? Thanks. That’s fine. Now, are you a complete fucking fool? You are? Right, I’m arresting you under the Fucking Fools Not Allowed to Drive Act, 2007.

kick it on

Food & Drink

Enough, already

Fuck it, I can’t take this any more.

Between piss-ups at the neighbours and piss-ups in my house, piss-ups at the pub-of-choice and random drunkenness related to Christmas, I really can’t commit to blogging.

Sorry, both of my readers.

I’ll be back in a few days.

Food & Drink

Giving Up Drink

I phoned Wrinkly Paddy, and I said, Pat, I’m thinking of quitting the liquor.

After a long, long pause he said, Why?

Well, I said, I think I’ve been going very heavy on the booze lately. Waking up every morning recently feeling like shit, can’t get out of bed, late for fucking work.

But Bock – Paddy says

And I find lately that I’m extremely aggressive towards people in the pub. You know, sarcastic, loud, unpleasant, overbearing.

But Bock –

Shouting at people.


Lately, I find I’ve become very selfish and inconsiderate.

Bock, will you let me talk?

Arrogant, almost.

Bock, shut the fuck up!!

Oh, sorry, Paddy. You were trying to say something.

Bock, it isn’t the liquor.

Isn’t it Pat?

No, Bock, it isn’t. You were always like that.

. . . . . . .

God, isn’t it great to talk things over with your friends?

Food & Drink


I went into Tesco a little while back, to buy some shit or other. I don’t know what it was. Some useless fucking crap that I didn’t need, no doubt, and that I could easily have waited for or done without altogether. Some pointless shit, like maybe raisins or something.

But that wasn’t what I wanted to say, so let’s move on. It doesn’t matter what I went in there to buy. Just move it on. The point I wanted to make was this: for the first time in years I noticed that they had on the shelf, over there in Tesco, a whole load of instant mash. Got that? Over there in Tesco at the Roxboro roundabout? Instant fucking mash?

Now, there’s only one word that suggests itself to me when I think of instant mash, and that word is WHY? For instance, how hard would it be to peel a couple of spuds, steam them and then mash them up with loads of real butter, a dash of pepper and a pinch of salt to taste? What could be nicer? What could be easier? What could be more delicious and natural? What, indeed, could be more nutritious?

What could be more stupid than buying a pack of grey powder, pouring it into a pan, adding hot water and calling it food?

Crime Food & Drink

The price of mushrooms

Jesus, I had a great breakfast this morning, and I combined it with a little shoplifting, which made it even fukken greater.

I refuse to shop in your average Pikey supermarket, especially on a bank holiday Monday when I’m supposed to be relaxing after a hard working week, and so I hit Superquinn. The plan was to pick up a half pound of smoked back rashers and a few mushrooms for the breakfast. Classy, or what? However, Superquinn being a classier-than-average supermarket, doesn’t have just one sort of mushroom. No. It has about fifty different kinds. And some are ordinary mushrooms. And some are brownish. And some are greyish. And some are sort of pink. Ish. Of course, if I’d taken the touble to cultivate an AA-Roadwatch accent, I’d know exactly the difference between these fungi but, being your basic Limerick knacker, I’m in a spot of bother. You see, the mushrooms have two prices: ordinary and gourmet. But the problem is, how to spot the diference? There’s no sign among the mushrooms to tell you which is which.

Right. What am I to deduce from this? The answer seems plain enough: the mini-managers they employ in these outlets have not the slightest idea how to tell one mushroom from another. Of course they don’t, having been brought up on instant Pot-Noodle. They are therefore SNOBS, now that they have a paying job, as are most of the people in this pathetic arriviste statelet, and therefore deeply impressed by anything out of the ordinary, including brown mushrooms. “Oh fuck. That must be the gourmet ones!” (As if you’d know, you little gobshite).

I decide to test this theory and fill up a bag with the brown mushrooms, as I would certainly like to try them out. When I weigh them and press the button, a sticker comes out with some huge, enormous, ridiculous, gigantic price on it, and I instinctively recoil. “Fuck that,” I mutter and in a major act of rebellion, I press the “mushrooms” button on the weighing scale. The sticker comes out a lot cheaper.

What a rebel.

To take my mind off this act of larceny, (or is it fraud?), I pick up a newspaper on the way to the check-out, which I absorb myself in as the pimply youth processes my purchases – a bag of mushrooms and half-a -pound of smoked back rashers. The cost isn’t high, and I happily pay him whatever he asks, secure in the knowledge that I have defrauded Superquinn of the difference between ordinary and gourmet mushrooms.

As I reach the car, I remember that I didn’t put the newspaper through the check-out either.

Yeaaahh!! What a fuckin rebel!!

But to return to the breakfast, do you know what I had? Of course you don’t, but I’m happy to tell you: I had something we don’t see too much of these days and I have to tell you, I fucking love it. Fried bread. Jesus, I love fried bread. Is there anything nicer than fried bread, and if there is you can contact me in heaven? Fried bread, but not with that sliced crap they call bread these days. No. With good old cottage loaf. Fucking delicious. Let me die now, happy.

Fried bread and gourmet mushrooms, now there’s a combination. And of course, real butter. Yes, there’s no doubt I’ll die prematurely from heart failure, but by feck, I’ll die happy. Dee-fuckin-licious.

Food & Drink Religion

Dem bones dem bones

Christ, I’m bollixed.

I decided that the only way to get some sort of shape on that goddam kitchen was to invite a gang of scroungers over for grub and liquor, so I set a date for last Saturday and told them I’d be handing out free food. That’s why I haven’t been here much lately: I’ve been working my arse off to get the kitchen finished so that a crowd of fucking drunkards could come over, take all my food and drink all my beer and all my wine. The grub was great, though I say so myself, and I was particularly pleased with my spare ribs cooked in honey, cider and peppers. I might let you have the recipe tomorrow and you can try it out. Let me know if you like it. I also did them a selection of dips, snacks and a pot of chilli con carne. How bad? It was all a lot of work but on the other hand, I got a lot done to the house, and one of the drunkards – a Warrior Princess – brought me a kitchen-warming gift: a book entitled Dictators’ Homes. Thank you, O Warrior Princess!

They came, they ate, they drank. They drank some more, and then just a tiny bit on top of that to make sure the last of my wine was gone. Then they fucked off.

That left me with a brain-damaged liver, which in years gone by would have somehow recovered on the Sunday, but people like me no longer live in normal times. No indeed. In earlier times, Father’s Day would have involved a couple of cards and a pair of socks. But these days, it involves my daughter taking me out on the piss, which is what happened. And I ended up shit-faced drunk again, singing along to Johnandmurty and giving away the last pint of the night. Not a common occurrence, let me tell you. Oh, and some semi-evolved stoned arsehole tried to start a fight with me. I’m glad to say it came to nothing as I wouldn’t want my beloved daughter to see me in an unseemly scrap. And I wouldn’t want to get beaten up either.

This is why, on Monday morning, once my eyes finally managed to focus on the newspaper, I was bemused to read about yet another set of monk’s bones doing the rounds. Do you know what I’m talking about? You don’t? Well, there seems to be a constant procession of skeletal remains around this fair land, and no shortage of gobshites to come out and Praise Da Lawd!

It started for me with Therese of Lisieux, aka the Little Flower, aka Therese of the Child Jesus. The Child Jesus: that idea must surely have been the creation of an Irish mother, or maybe Italian. No, no, no. Don’t grow up, Jesus. Stay at home with me forever. (That reminds me of the time a teenage boy’s skeleton was found in Stratford-on-Avon. It was Shakespeare when he was much younger.)

Anyway, they brought Therese of Leixlip to Ireland as part of a world tour, except it wasn’t all her bones. It wasn’t even some of her bones. No. It was a knuckle. The Blessed Knuckle of Lisieux. And you couldn’t see it. Now, I’d have imagined that you’d have some kind of a window that you could peep through to see the blessed knuckle, but that wasn’t the case. It was a solid box, with jewels on the outside, and you just had to imagine the knuckle inside, beaming out all sorts of goodness at you. People queued all night long to see the Blessed Box of Saint Therese. All the way around the block from the cathedral, up along Cathedral Place, up Mulgrave Street, the whole way to the lunatic asylum and back down again.

Ever alert to a possible fast buck, there were many who moved among the throng selling flowers so that the faithful could leave them on Saint Therese’s Box, as a sign of respect to the Little Flower. And of course, I thought the same. You know those ribs cooked in cider and honey? Well, it seemed appropriate to roast up a few ovens-full and work the hungry crowd through the night. Barbecued Ribs of Saint Therese. Only five pounds each. They loved it and it was on the success of this that I built yet another enormous fortune.

Now I’d better find out what the latest ossified fucker is called. You have to keep ready.

Food & Drink

Talking of AA meetings

I hate the word “workaholic”. I think it represents all that is stupid and illiterate in modern society. “Alcoholic” I can understand, but where did “workaholic” come from – “workahol”? Or “chocaholic” – chocahol, perhaps?

What about fuckahol?

But Alcoholics Anonymous is something else again. It’s the anonymous bit that I love: you have all these WORLD FAMOUS actors, musicians, athletes and electricians, and they’re all members of Alcoholics Anonymous. I mean, come on. There’s George Best, over there in the corner, looking diffident and self-effacing. Hi. I’m George, and I’m an alcoholic. They’re all going “That’s George fucking Best and look!! He’s a piss-artist too, just like me”. Not that it would come as much surprise to anybody. Anonymous? Ah come on.

PS I know he’s dead.