Friday 5 August 2011


So there I was this afternoon exhausted after a day of getting ready for the move when this man walked in. All morning I'd been doing man's work taking things apart and unscrewing big slabs of MDF off the walls. The afternoon was being spent filling bags with rubbish, recycling stuff and putting stock into boxes. Lisa told me that I wasn't to bring anything home. Either throw it out or put it in the new shop was the instruction I got this morning. Hope she doesn't look under the bed in the spare room.....Anyway this fellow walked in holding his phone out in front of him. There was something about him that made me think he must be from Cork. Maybe it was the clothes or the walk I don't know but I knew he was straight off Patrick Street. "Hows it going bud?" he said in the strongest beautiful city accent I've heard in a long time. Looking up at me through his glasses with a slight stoop in his stance he made me smile after a long tiring day. "Grand boy, grand" I said hearing my own accent thicken. "De phone stopped working on me like. I only had it in de pocket and when I took it out it was dead like and I'm scared stiff of them" he said looking very worried.  He looked like he was a couple of years older than me. As he handed it to me he said those immortal words "Its not my phone at all, its the old dolls"  The old doll. I had to turn away to hide the laugh that was building inside. There's a phrase I hadn't heard in years. I'd forgotten it and here was this fellow in all innocence using it about his wife or girlfriend. If I remember it correctly the old doll never liked being called the old doll either. Is it a Cork slang? I've never heard it used anywhere else along with many other classic Cork slang words. Bazzer-haircut, on the lang-dodging school, jagging-kissing (jagging the old doll), gowl-fool, getting a fifty-when the old doll doesn't turn up for a date, fla-ubiquitous term used for sex, messing, attractive person, tired ( I'm flaed out tonight), lash-good looking woman, claim-I want to fight you, rubber dollies- sneakers. There are many many other words which make up the language for those of us who grew up on the Lee and its always great to hear them still in use. Two Cork people could talk in code for years without the CIA, MI5 or Mossad having a clue what they were on about. The fellow with the old doll's phone made me laugh after a long day and I was glad to help. He didn't ask me where the best place in town was for Murphs. Probably cos he knew that it isn't possible to get a decent one outside of the real capital!


Another program we enjoy watching is Big Love. On Sky Atlantic it stars Bill Paxton as a Mormon businessman who practices the Principle or polygamy to the rest of us.. the difference is that he lives in the suburbs not in a compound with other polygamists. He has three wives and they try to live a normal live hiding the fact they are all married to each other. The story line is well done and kept very believable. The series is funny whilst also being very dramatic about a serious subject. Everything is touched in Big Love..religious freedom, child abuse, women's rights, mental illness you name it its in there. Why any man would try to keep three wives happy whilst searching out a fourth is beyond me though!

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