‘There’s a lot of Oh! My! God!s – even by normal South Dublin standards’

Ross O’Carroll Kelly: While Honor’s away, the guests will play

I decide that it’s time to clear the gorden. And there’s only way to do it. I look at my phone and I go, “Oh my God, Honor’s coming home!”

I decide that it’s time to clear the gorden. And there’s only way to do it. I look at my phone and I go, “Oh my God, Honor’s coming home!”

 

It’s not happening. I’m just saying. I’m not having it.

Yeah, no, JP has brought his own steak to my borbecue and that for me is, like, a total no-no. He has no shame about it either. He’s standing there in his knee-length shorts and a pair of those ridiculous origami shoes with the Orgentina flag on the back and he’s telling me – so pleased with himself – that it’s a Kobe fillet mignon from that craft butchers in Ranelagh and it cost nearly 30 yoyos.

So I just go, “I’m not cooking that. End of conversation.”

He’s like, “Do you mind me asking why?”

“Because I think it’s out of order – bang out of order, as a matter of fact – to show up at someone else’s borbecue with your own food.”

Of course, Lauren has to get involved then. She goes, “You told me to bring my own food.”

I’m there, “That’s because you’re a vegetarian. I’m not getting up at six o’clock in the morning to, I don’t know, shallow-fry kale – or whatever passes for food in your world. I’m talking specifically about steaks here.”

Oisinn hands me a stick of Heinemite. He’s there, “What’s the problem, Ross?”

I’m like, “The problem is that JP is basically turning his nose up at my steaks and deciding that he deserves to eat better than the rest of us.”

If Honor was here, she’d take JP’s steak, dip it in the rainwater butt, then kick it up and down the Vico Road, before giving it back to me to cook

Every conversation in the gorden has suddenly stopped at this stage? Next, it’s Amie with an ie’s turn to have her say. “Oh my God,” she goes, “you’re being really petty, Ross.”

I’m like, “Am I? And how would you like it if you invited me and Sorcha around to your gaff for a dinner porty and we handed you a casserole dish and said, ‘Heat that up for us, would you? We brought our own food because it’s nicer than your muck.’”

Amie with an ie is a terrible cook. You’d sooner eat the focking curtains than the donkey swill she’d put on your plate.

Another line crossed

JP tries to embarrass me then? He’s like, “I don’t mind, I’ll cook it myself,” and he goes to take the spatula out of my hand. Which is another line crossed. You do not try to take over the grill at another man’s borbecue.

I’m like, “Just give me the focking steak, will you? I’ll cook it for you.”

And he goes, “Yeah, thanks, Ross,” and they all shake their heads and roll their eyes like I’m the one being ridiculous?

Lauren goes, “He’s not so tough without his little friend!” and everyone laughs.

I’m like, “What are you talking about?”

“I’m talking about Honor. I’m just saying you cave in pretty quickly when you don’t have her for back-up.”

She’s totally right, of course. If Honor was here, she’d take JP’s steak, dip it in the rainwater butt, then kick it up and down the Vico Road, before giving it back to me to cook.

Lauren’s there, “How’s she getting on in Irish college, Sorcha?”

Sorcha goes, “She’s having a great time. But poor Ross is like a lost soul without her!”

Again, everyone laughs.

And that’s when JP all of a sudden lets a roar out of him. He’s like, “What the hell are you doing, Ross?”

I’m there, “What do you mean?”

“I just saw you turn my steak with the tongs you used on that raw chicken.”

“So?”

“So? That’s how you get food poisoning.”

There’s suddenly a lot of Oh! My! God!s – even by the normal standards of a South Dublin social gathering – and people are looking at me like I just burned down a museum.

I’m like, “What? It’s a bit of diarrhoea – what’s the big deal?”

Lauren goes, “Do you know how many people die every year from diarrhoea, Ross?”

“Yeah, in the Third World!”

“Oh, so that makes it okay to make jokes about it?”

Amie with an ie goes, “I think what he said might even be racist?”

“It’s hordly racist. I’m just saying that we’re lucky enough to live in a port of the world where having diarrhoea is an anecdote. You stick a toilet roll in the freezer and you tell everyone on WhatsApp, ‘Hey, don’t eat the chicken in Ross’s gaff!’ Christian, back me up here – you boarded in Castlerock for two years. I thought everything involving the toilet was funny to you.”

Mouth shut

But he doesn’t back me? So I just decide to keep my mouth shut from that point onwards. I give JP’s steak another rub with the raw chicken tongs, then I text Honor, going, “Really need you here today – people taking the piss because I don’t have you to fight my battles for me,” except she doesn’t reply? Having too much of a good time, I’m guessing.

Anyway, half an hour later, we’re all sitting around, eating. Everyone’s talking about Love Island and I’m just staring at JP, watching how easily his knife cuts through the steak and hoping – genuinely hoping – that he gets sick.

Suddenly, Chloe and Sophie arrive with some random dude who Sophie’s been seeing and who has no connection with rugby whatsoever. Do you want to know the first thing he says to me?

He goes, “I hope you don’t mind, I brought my own sausages. They’re actually handmade – wild boar and apple.”

I’m right on the point of throwing a punch when Chloe suddenly goes, “By the way, who was making jokes about diarrhoea?”

I’m like, “Who told you about that?”

“Amie with an ie said on Twitter she was at a borbecue where someone was making jokes about a disease that kills possibly millions of people every year.”

I look at Amie with an ie, who goes, “I just think comments like that need to be called out.”

I decide that it’s time to clear the gorden. And there’s only way to do it. I look at my phone and I go, “Oh my God, Honor’s coming home!”

Sorcha’s there, “Excuse me?”

“Yeah, no, she just sent me a text message saying she was homesick and she told them to shove their Gaeltacht. She’s actually getting into a taxi outside Heuston Station.”

“Oh! My God!” Lauren goes, jumping up like the seat is on fire underneath her. “Is that the time? We, em, better go, Christian!” and she leads the stampede of 40 people running for their cors.

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