Wednesday, March 23, 2011

The Story of the Charmless Man

Irish people are a peculiar bunch. A rather blanket statement, sure, but bear with me. Although Irish people are universally peculiar, and peculiar to eachother in their peculiarness, they do manage to have one thing in common. No matter what part of the country your from, you want your local celebrity to fail.


As a Cork girl, telling bitchy stories about Johnathon Rhys-Myers is a cultural inhertiance as embedded as the word "langer". Which, coincidentally, is a much bandied about term for Rhys-Myers. If your from Roscommon, you spend your life waiting for Chris O'Dowd to punch an air stewardess just so you can have something to take him down a peg or two. Ammo. I don't even want to think about what happens to Stuart Charlize-Theron-bedding Townshend when he goes home.


Maybe it's because we're from a country that has bitterly grown accustomed to people leaving for bigger and better things. I still remember my secondary school history book being predominantly concerned with the IRA, the Civil War, but most offensive of all, people fecking leaving. This is still most people's chief memory of the 80's; the warbling moan of yet another absentee generation.

And lo, Colin Farrel found America

I never thought about this until the other night, before which I assumed that everyone was conditioned to despise their local celebrities. A drunken encounter with my Swedish friend has shifted my perception somewhat.

After a rousing game of Soul Caliber and two even more rousing bottles of Austrailian wine, we flopped down to watch Family Guy (a tv show only remotely funny to thirteen year olds and drunk people) and were interupted by an advertisement for True Blood. As we peered quietly at Anna Paquin arrousing multiple forms of the supernatural, my Swedish friend announces that she went to school with Alexander Skarsgard. I don't watch True Blood, but I know enough about it to know that Skarsgard is a stone-cold fox.

At this point, me and Tom turn to our Swede and await the litany that our culture has come to expect. We wait for an impassioned speech about Skarsgard being an egocentric piggy-backing all-round douche. We wait for an anecdote about the time he beat her up and stole her lunch money. We wait to hear about the time where he spat in a teachers face, before crying "Do you KNOW who I AM?"

We wait. And we wait. And then we wait some more.

Era's pass as we wait.

Our Swedish friend eats her slice of pie, sips at her Smirnoff Ice and seems to be completely unaware of what is supposed to come next. Finally, we break the silence.


"Well, what?" she replies, bemused by our silence

"..aren't you going to tell us about him?"

"It was primary school. We never spoke. He was a boy."

Although we are both aware that opposing genders do not speak in primary school, this is far from satisfying.

"But you were in the same class as him. You must have heard something about him."

A shrug. She looks pityingly into our worried eyes. A celebrity without an anecodote explaining how they are a dickhead is a notion neither I nor Tom have had to deal with before. It is basically the adult Irish equivalent of finding out Santa isn't real.

"He was probably quite spoilt." she offers

Yes. Something to hang onto. Our spirits pick up again.

"..yeah? What else?"

"Well, he was from a very wealthy area of the city, I suppose all those boys were quite spoilt."

This is no good. On and on, we press her for details. We actually tell her to make up details if she needs to, but it only serves to confuse her more.  Where she comes from, seemingly, celebrities are so barely relevant that they don't even bear bitching about. We give up. Family Guy is over, the True Blood ad has come and gone again, and now Never Mind The Buzzcocks is on.

"Did you ever hear that story about yer one from the Noisettes?", Tom pipes up.

I'm all ears.


  1. Your hatred of Rhys-Meyers soothes me. I know someone who went drinking with Cillian Murphy. He took his seat in the Bróg. My buddy asked him to move. He did so immediately. Years later, he not only remembered him, but stopped to chat to him at the Wind that Shakes the Barley premiere in my work.
    What a cunt.

  2. I have heard a worrying amount of dialogue about Cillian Murphy, all pertaining to the notion that he is, in fact, a very nice fellow uninhibited by being friends with Christopher Nolan. It's very distressing. Someone should sit him down for a good long chat about throwing wine in peoples faces.