Posts Tagged ‘ Jim Brown ’

News in Brief – A Year in Brief

Olympic TorchHAPPY NEW YEAR! How’s the head? Mouth feel like it’s full of Jedwards hair? What better way to start the New Year than tired, fat and saturated in booze?

It hasn’t been a bad year. Actually . . . Well anyway to celebrate the dawn of the unlucky for some 2013 News in Brief has taken a look back at some of the best stories from 2012.

2012 saw the evolution of lives lived online and cemented the necessity that is the internet across every aspect of our lives. And its propensity for porn. Seeing the potential in owning online, Kevin O’Shea from Waterford in a “moment of madness” bought the domains; finegael.xxx, sinnfein.xxx and fiannafail.xxx for €300; the X-rated dot-com equivalent known for its use in porn site web addresses. On his purchases O’Shea said, ” I was laid up with a broken leg and I had a lot of time on my hands. It was kind of like that film Rear Window where the main character goes a bit mad.”

Last year Irish author Julian Gough, took umbrage with the organisers of the eponymous Wodehouse literary prize after discovering their winner was secured before the short list was drawn up. The well sought prize for the winner of the Wodehouse award? Well the top author has the honour of bestowing their name on a pig. Gough offended by the fix in the competition stole the prize pig from its home in Wales threatening to return the animal “sausage by sausage” until the competition was made fair. In a twist to the tale, and despite Gough’s criminal activity, 2012 saw the writer once again short listed for the award.

A former drug addict helped her husband in his attempt to rob a building society disguised as a wheelchair bound woman. While Denise Ward, 39 waited outside in a car, Thomas Clark dressed in a black wig, threatened a Permanent TSB branch manager with an axe. However Clark and his 21-year-old accomplice were chased from the building by the manager, shouting; “would you ever f*** off”.

In other banking news Ulster Bank lost the run of itself also losing its customers cash somewhere. Taxes, the payment and avoidance of also dominated the news this year. British comedian Jimmy Carr’s lack of tax lead to controversy on this side of the water as well. Whilst we know certain superstars of our own *cough-German submarine named band-cough* have made use of off-shore, legal, tax reduction measures it is unlikely they will face a barrage like Carr as the Irish economy relies in part on the income of the `legitimate tax avoidance measures` we offer global companies such as Facebook, Google and Apple . And at least Ulster Bank apologised. Chief Executive, Jim Brown turned down this year’s bonus after the unmitigated disaster that has been Ulster Bank’s computer problems. Thanks Jim.

Starbucks found themselves in trouble after they “erroneously posted” a tweet on their @StarbucksIE account saying; “Happy hour is on! Show us what makes you proud to be British for a chance to win. Don’t forget to tag #MyFrappuccino”. Irish followers didn’t take well to the mis-tweet with comedy writer Colm Tobin calling it, “the social media equivalent of Oliver Cromwell kicking Fungi in the nose” and another tweeter suggesting Starbucks re-name frappuccino’s, ‘Trappachino’s’ for the duration of the Euro 2012. Of which the less said the better.

On a similar theme we all watched Eurovision didn’t we? You either love it or threaten to `shed the blood` of `European scum`. Oh dear. For a show that often receives a Marmite reaction an Islamic extremist group went a bit further threatening to use knives and chemical weapons in a terror attack on the Eurovision hopefuls in May. Irish entry Jedward were unfazed, tweeting `Just so you know the Jedward Baby Day Care is closed and will not be changing any diapers so go baby wee wee at your own home`. Quite.

Ah Jedward, the stalwarts or News In Brief what else have they done this year? Well another one turned up, then another two (although made of wax), they ran a marathon with no training and supported Westlife in their farewell tour in Croke Park – never will we see four men, so stoically and so expertly stand up from stools.

It was Jedward who carried the Olympic flame as well, as it crossed Irish soil. With population figures taken into account Ireland came fourth in the Paralympics and earned a total of sixteen medals across London 2012. Not too shabby and a source of great pride to the whole country who welcomed our champions home with great ceremony and celebration. First stop The Late Late Show where the host managed to make a mockery of the whole thing and get Adam Nolan’s name wrong, repeatedly. He certainly wouldn’t want to meet the boxing champion in the ring after calling him Andy throughout the show causing Adam to take to Twitter to endorse the return of Pat Kenny. And the gold medal for prize prat goes to Ryan Tubridy.

What’s longer than an olympic swimming pool and less watery? Well, a lot of things really, but particularly the journey Olympic gymnast hopeful Kieran Behan had to take get to China. Mr Behan had been invited to take part in a prestigious gymnastic event but due to mistakes regarding his visa, was forced to re-board his eighteen hour flight from Heathrow to Beijing. Back in England it was only after discussion with the Chinese embassy that Mr Behan was once again onboard and bound for the Chinese capital. Gymnastics Ireland have taken full blame for the blunder which has cost Keiran five days of important training.Mr Behan, who has overcome sever disability and injury to get to his position in the gymnastic world was understandably frustrated, a member of his team commented, `It was the world’s biggest cock up.`

2012 saw cuts to public services including the Gardai. A victim of a burglary was forced to go and pick up Gardai after she was told there were no patrol cars for them to use. The woman, from Newtowncunningham in Co. Donegal initially reported the incident at her home, before being told she had the choice of waiting for the nearest patrol car, which was 9km away at the Carrigans station, or collecting the Gardai herself to investigate the incident.

And who could forget the councillor in Cork that wanted to introduce DNA testing to determine the doggy culprits leaving mess all over the city’s streets? He’s hoping we all have.

Ah 2012 what a year. What will 2013 bring? Hopefully more of the same. A Westlife reunion, the continuation of Jedward, more government groaning, banking balls ups and the general news fodder that makes this country so great and gives News in Brief something to write about every week. HAPPY NEW YEAR!

News in Brief-Ulster Bank and Centra in Trouble As Burglary Victim Forced To Pick Gardai Up

A priceless piece of art in the National Gallery has been damaged in an isolated incident. The only work by Claude Monet owned by the National is now having repairs to a hole made in it by forty-seven year old Andrew Shannon from Dublin. Details are still unclear as to what was done to the painting or why but one thing is certain the work, ‘Argenteuil Basin with a Single Sail Boat’ won’t be worth much Monet anymore!

      Centra have had a slap of the wrist after including an alcohol offer on an advertisement for Child Allowance day reductions. The company was criticised for appearing to suggest forty bottles of Budweiser were the best thing to buy with your benefits as 1 in 11 children in Ireland live with a parent with an alcohol problem.
 
        Fianna Fail Senator Averil Power said, “Centra’s cynical promotion is insulting to parents who are struggling to pay for the basics and certainly won’t be spending their money on beer.” But the cake, ice-cream and biscuits also part of the advertisement are presumably the kind of necessities that are top of their lists? Specially as 1 in five Irish children are obese. Two for one on fags I say! Buy a gun, get one free! No?
 
Fancy some government debt? Try eBay. Minister for Finance Michael Noonan has done particularly well at auction selling off €500 million in short-term government debt. The bills sold, reach maturity in October, no interest is paid on them and the government must pay them in full when they reach maturity. Noonan called the sale a, “very important milestone on Ireland’s continuing path to recovery”. I just hope he understands it more than I do.
 
       A quick round of applause for Ulster Bank Chief Executive, Jim Brown who has said he will turn down this year’s bonus after the unmitigated disaster that has been Ulster Bank’s computer problems. Thanks Jim.
 
And while we’re at it one for An Post. They spectacularly spent €80,000 on eight Italian-made Cargo scooters for use on Dublin’s mail routes. They were painted, branded, tested and trialled and found to be useless. The scooters have now been sold to a businessman from Letterkenny who bought each bike at a reduced price of €1,500. I’m sure he thought it a redletter day.
 
       A victim of a burglary was forced to go and pick up Gardai after she was told there were no patrol cars for them to use. The woman, from Newtowncunningham in Co. Donegal initially reported the incident a her home, before being told she had the choice of waiting for the nearest patrol car, which was 9km away at the Carrigans station, or collecting the Gardai herself to investigate the incident.
 
Guards aren’t the only ones who have stopped cruising, after the announcement of a split between Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes (see what I did there?). Katie Holmes, most famous for playing Joey in Dawson’s Creek and Tom for being a seriously strange Scientologist, are now set to play their biggest roles yet in an acrimonious and media maintained divorce.
 
In other more interesting news; Pudsey, the pooch that won Britain’s Got Talent with his dancing owner Ashleigh, has signed a publishing contract worth £350,000. That’s right he can dance, he can write, but can he do his own stunts? ‘Pudsey: My Autobiography’ comes on the tail of Roy Keane’s dog Triggs also releasing a biography this year. Who will be next, Bo Obama? Tinkerbell Hilton? It’s a dog’s life.