Archive for November, 2009

“One Ring to Rule Them All”

November 28, 2009

The over-the-top quote in my preceding post just might have seemed to  imply that the Irish game of hurling is a crude affair.  But not so– at least when played by a master like Christy Ring, widely considered the greatest hurler of all times.  The GAA book of quotations gives him a full chapter–  “Christy:  One Ring to Rule Them All”:

When I know all about it, then I’ll have to give it up. [ Christy, as quoted by Brendan Fullam in Hurling Giants (1994)]

‘The funny thing about Christy Ring is that the older he got, the better he got.  He was better in his latter years than when he started’.  [John Doyle, quoted by Colm Keane in A Cut Above the Rest(1999)]

One legend is that he honed his accuracy by shooting a ball from 20 yards at the bell button on the parish priest’s door.  Another is that he used to lob a ball into a bucket hanging from a tree 30 or 40 yards away. [Denis Walsh (29 Feb. 2004) ]

‘Sure I didn’t see Jesus Christ either and everyone knows that he was the greatest!’ [Dr. Jim Young, Cork hurler, when asked how he knew that Ring was the greatest when he had never seen him play]

And I guess that last quote would fit my situation too!

There is a statue of Christy Ring in Cloyne, County Cork.


An Irish Hurling Coach’s Pep Talk

November 26, 2009

Moving right along with more material from “God and the Referees:  Unforgettable GAA Quotations” — these are supposed to be the words of one Jon Kenny, encouraging his hurlers before a big match.  A Kenny, true, but maybe (let us hope!) no relation of ours:

“Think of your fathers, think of your grandfathers, think of the men that died lads.  Jaysus, lads, the men that died so that you could get out there with a small ball to puck around.  So get out there lads, and let every blow lead to a feckin’ funeral.  Don’t be afraid to break hurleys lads — there’s plenty of hurleys on the sideline– hit ’em hard, they’re no relation.  I don’t want to see ye coming back in here with dirty jerseys, I want to see ye with bloodstained jerseys, so get out now boys… and enjoy yerselves.”

They do say that hurling can be a rather physical sport…

In a later posting  I’ll talk a bit about the history of the Gaelic Athletic Association, which has had such a great impact on modern Ireland.  Most of it good (despite some excesses).



November 26, 2009

A happy Thanksgiving Day to all!  Thank God for all we have– and let’s help our fellow men & women, especially in these hard economic times.



Football in County Leitrim

November 24, 2009

From God and the Referees:  Unforgettable GAA Quotations, by Eoghan Corry:

“Three teams terrified the life out of us.  I still remember them, Aughnasheelin, Aughawilliam and Aughvass.  Aughawilliam and Aughvass would come down to play the Ballinamore lads, and strike terror into what was mostly a team of soft college boys.  They would stare you down before even a ball was thrown in, and try to disable you with the first move of the match.  We usually considered ourselves faster and fitter than them, but we weren’t tougher than them.”

Gus Martin Irish Press (15 August 1994)

I was born in Aughavas — was glad to see my native parish mentioned, even if it was mis-spelled (as was Aughawillan).  I remember, from when I was very small, watching an Irish football match.  We all cheered for Aughavas’s star player “Red” (Michael) Moran, my dad’s cousin.

And of course another relative, Colm O’Rourke, became a star player for County Meath at a later date, and then a noted sports commentator.  He will be quoted in a later posting…


Hello again!

November 23, 2009

I have not posted anything on this blog for quite a while.  Has the world missed me?  Somehow I don’t think so…

Just a few days ago some public benefactor hacked the web site of the University of East Anglia’s Hadley Climate Research Unit (CRU).  I say “public benefactor” though I usually don’t approve of computer hacking.  But, what the emails of CRU, now made public, reveal is information that the public (in every country) needs to know.  And it’s pretty sordid stuff.  As a skeptic on much of the AGW (anthropogenic global warming) alarmism, though, I can’t say that I’m too surprised.  I hope it does some good!

Here’s one early article on the above subject, from the PowerLine blog.     But I don’t propose to get into the whole dismal subject right now.

Instead, I’ll post some quotes from an interesting book, which I found at the recent Irish Festival in Timonium, MD (near Baltimore).  The title:  “God and the Referees:  Unforgettable GAA Quotations”.  GAA is the Gaelic Athletic Association, which oversees the Irish sports of (Gaelic) football and hurling, in Ireland.