Mattie confuses cute blondes . . . and 'Playboy' of western world


DÁIL SKETCH:Rosanna Kenny on the cover of ‘Playboy’ and Enda Davison on ‘Time’? The mind boggles

MATTIE McGRATH was so utterly scandalised he brought his x-rated complaint to the floor of the Dáil. We were a bit taken aback ourselves.

“But the most sickening thing, I think Minister, is today and last week, to see our Taoiseach on the front page of Playboy magazine.” As Mattie fulminated, jaws dropped all over Leinster House.

“I wish him well – I voted for him as Taoiseach. But I expected a lot different from him.”

Well, you would, wouldn’t you?

The acting chairman intervened. “For the record, he was on the cover of Time magazine,” quivered Paudie Coffey, looking green around the gills.

“Sorry” snapped Mattie. “What magazine did I say? Oooh sorry. Sorry, sorry. I’ll correct that. I meant to say [looking] like a playboy on Time magazine . . .”

The mind boggles. A playboy? Enda? That’s almost as bad as the other scenario.

Mattie sounded miffed because his wide-ranging oratorical roll on the Fiscal Responsibility Bill had been interrupted.

But he managed to get going again. “The people suffering from austerity and the kites being flown now are traumatised . . .”

No offence to topless Enda, but who wouldn’t be traumatised? The damage was done. The image planted. We couldn’t eat a thing for the rest of the day.

Mary Mitchell O’Connor was next to speak. This was very brave of the deputy for Dún Laoghaire, considering that great waves of nausea were sweeping across Leinster House at that very moment.

“I listened very carefully to Deputy Mattie McGrath. And Deputy, I just remind you that maybe you should be getting your economic advice from Time magazine rather than Playboy magazine,” croaked Mary queasily.

Well. Mattie was extremely affronted. What was she implying? He had made a genuine mistake.

Mitchell O’Connor, with a smile, gave him the benefit of the doubt. “It may have been a slip of the tongue . . .”

Clearly, what happened was that Mattie mixed up his blondes: Rosanna Kenny on the cover of Playboy, Enda Davison on the cover of Time. It’s an easy mistake to make. But we’re still not the better of it.

We had to lie down and take a Chillax pill, as the young people might say. Although, at their age, they shouldn’t be on the laxatives.

It’s quaint old place, Leinster House. Fine Gael backbencher Simon Harris, who, at twelve-and-three quarters, is the youngest TD in the Dáil, urged his colleagues to “chillax” at the previous night’s stormy meeting of the Public Accounts Committee. Honest to God. Not since Paul Gogarty stood up in the chamber and told Emmet Stagg to eff off has the use of language caused such a stir.

Enda Kenny and Gerry Adams joked about it – in Irish and in English – during Leaders’ Questions. “Chillax” they both said, rolling the word around in their mouths as if tasting a rare wine.

And they laughed in amazement. Enda bowed up towards Simon, who must have been delighted that his PAC intervention went down so well. If it hadn’t, the Taoiseach would have confiscated his PlayStation.

But no. Enda and Gerry were mightily impressed.

“All the young people know what Chillax is,” said the Taoiseach.

And all the young people know that a TD using that word in the course of business, no matter what age he is, is guilty of the verbal equivalent of “dad dancing.” Cringingly uncool.

Some enterprising people already have a little button badge for sale on the internet with the slogan: “Simon says Chillax!” Only 65 cent. No doubt a tee-shirt will follow. Leaders’ Questions saw a welcome first from Thomas Pringle of the technical group, who hasn’t exactly shone at Leader’s Questions.

His questions tend to take the form of a school essay, which he reads in sing-song fashion from a script.

He never poses a problem for Enda, who has taken to chiding him over his refusal to pay the household charge.

He was at it again yesterday, when Thomas raised the very interesting topic of the IMF’s doubts about the imposition of austerity on Ireland.

“I hope you’ve paid your household charge,” sneered the Taoiseach, steering clear of the IMF’s misgivings.

Everyone on the Opposition side groaned.

Thomas rose to read his second essay. But he didn’t. Instead, he quipped: “You know Taoiseach, I would nearly consider paying the household tax if it would mean you come up with a better line.”

And the whole House cheered.

But what about yesterday’s big story? Hearts melted at the sight of all those harmless, dumb animals and everyone wondered how anyone could be so mean to them.

With the big innocent heads on them all and their soft, trusting ways.

But politics is politics. Labour will just have to learn how to stand up to Fine Gael.

Speaking of puppies, no doubt Enda will be trying to engineer a photo opportunity with those gorgeous doggies rescued on Tuesday and now at the DSPCA headquarters.

All those baby little paws to high five . . . how could a Taoiseach resist?