The year in (short) Letters to the Editor



Beethoven’s shopping note

Sir, – Tallis this, I’m a Schumann most of your readers Allegri that this Messiaen has gone Farrar enough. I refer, of Carse, to those letter-writers and their Palestrina dream-up puns that, by now, are, in Pärt, obviously Borodin from other letters, Scriabin the barrel and just pure Scheidt. I can’t Handel any Moore; in fact Arne I Orff to Haydn the Tavener for some decent Bartok and to Glinka Glass of Meyerbeer. Gluck. – Yours, etc, NIGEL MOONEY, Ballydonnell, Avoca, Co Wicklow. (January 28)

Sir, – I hope these musically X-rated puns are censored more carefully in the future. My daughter is A Minor. – Yours, etc, EOIN KEEHAN, Ballisk Court, Donabate, Co Dublin. (January 28)


History of Ireland in 100 excuses

Sir, – 281. Frank McNally started it (Irishman’s Diary, February 9th). – Yours, etc, MATTIE LENNON, Lacken, Blessington, Co Wicklow. (February 18)

A sign of the times

Sir, – I have now witnessed the ultimate “climb down” in our cash-strapped economy. An 08 registered Bentley being driven as a taxi! – Yours, etc, Sir HENRY GRATTAN BELLEW, Ard Lorcain, Stillorgan, Co Dublin. (February 22)


Fit to print (and print)

Sir, – Given Deputy Aengus Ó Snodaigh’s obvious enthusiasm for widespread information dissemination, may we now characterise Sinn Féin’s electoral strategy as a ballot box in one hand and an ink cartridge in the other? – Yours, etc, TOM O’CONNOR, Riverchapel, Gorey, Co Wexford. (March 1)

Sir, – Is it time to take the ink cartridge out of Irish politics? – Yours, etc, JOE LANGAN, Port-na-Blagh, Co Donegal. (March 2)

O tempora! O mores!

Sir, – Pacta sunt servanda: Delenda est Irlanda. – Yours, etc, JOHN A MURPHY, Douglas Road, Cork. (March 15)


History of Ireland in 100 insults

A chara, – 343. The last time I saw a mouth like that, there was a hook in it. – Is mise, BRIAN O’REILLY, Newtown, Naas, Co Kildare. (April 11)

Fiscal crisis, what fiscal crisis?

Sir, – How can any of us understand the gravity of the Irish fiscal crisis while our politicians and top civil servants continue to take home extortionate wages? Obviously, if we can afford to still pay the top 17,000 public servants (who earn over €100,000 a year) a total amount of over €2.4 billion, the same amount that covers the bottom 150,000 who earn less that 20,000, there is no financial crisis. – Yours, etc, PAULINE BLEACH, Wolli Creek, New South Wales, Australia. (April 20)


Cardinal Brady’s role questioned

Sir, – The mental reservation is beginning to fill up. Another inmate will be arriving shortly. – Yours, etc, LIAM McMULLIN, Donamon, Co Roscommon. (May 5)

An angry exchange of letters

Sir, – EU plus IMF equals “I FUME”. – Yours, etc, JOHN BRENNAN, Church Street, East Wall, Dublin 3. (May 26)

Éamon Ó Cuív and Fianna Fáil

Sir, – For a short while, Éamon Ó Cuív was the political equivalent of Schrödinger’s Cat – simultaneously in and out of Fianna Fáil. Well, the cat has been well and truly belled. – Yours, etc, PAUL DELANEY, Beacon Hill, Dalkey, Co Dublin. (May 10)


Mick Wallace and the VAT bill

Sir, – Which is the greater offence: to return false figures in your VAT returns to the Revenue Commissioners, which is illegal, or to destroy the economy of the State, which is not? – Yours, etc, HARRY KELLY, Westbourne Road, Terenure, Dublin 6W. (June 12)

Lows and highs of Euro 2012

Sir, – Regarding Niall Ginty’s request for a health warning to accompany the slogan “You’ll never beat the Irish” (June 12th): he can rest assured – terms and conditions apply. – Yours, etc, RONAN CAHILL, Moyne Road, Ranelagh, Dublin 6. (June 18)


Higgs boson captured

Sir, – With the discovery of the “God particle”, does this mean we have finally discovered the ecumenical matter? – Yours, etc, LIAM SCALLY, Tonlegee Road, Dublin 5. (July 6)

Sir, – Is mise le mass, HUGH DOYLE, Dunshaughlin, Co Meath. (July 13)

Worst of the Irish summer

Sir, – In the present circumstances, why do our weather forecasters feel the need to talk so much? Surely it can all be summarised with a variation on Samuel Beckett? Rain. Rain again. Rain wetter. – Yours, etc, WILLIE DILLON, Coast Road, Bettystown, Co Meath. (July 19)

Getting rid of waste at ‘Anglo’

Sir, – Anglo Irish “bank” has announced details of a tender for “the supply of confidential waste destruction services” (Business, July 7th). Despite this, a few days later, the gardaí­ said they were confident of securing a conviction in relation to the Anglo Irish matter. Life has started to imitate Ross. “Shred Focking Everything” (and the taxpayers pay for it). – Yours, etc, SEÁN MAC CANN, Trillick, Co Tyrone. (July 21)


Waste competition

Sir, – In the interest of competition in waste collection, the cul-de-sac (of 24 houses) where I live now has five refuse collection lorries visiting every week. Is this a record? – Yours, etc, CLARE WALSH, Elton Court, Leixlip, Co Kildare. (August 7)

A name for new Liffey bridge

Sir, – Surely there can now be only one name for the new Liffey bridge. The “Golden Kate Bridge”. – Yours, etc, BRENDAN KENNEDY, St Johns Wood, Clondalkin, Dublin 22. (August 11)

Fifty names for Irish rain

Sir, – 70. My great grandfather from Co Cavan spoke of it “raining shoemakers’ knives”, an apt description for this Irish summer. – Yours, etc, MICHAEL WILSON, Ravenhill Park, Belfast. (August 22)

Sir, – 95. On September 9th at 3.30pm, it will be raining Kilkenny’s Top-Cats and Galway’s Under-Dogs at Croke Park. – Yours, etc, KEVIN DEVITTE, Mill Street, Westport, Co Mayo. (August 25)


Is this a first?

Sir, – While browsing in a store in the Eyre Square Shopping Centre on Tuesday, September 25th, I was astonished to hear Bing Crosby crooning his version of White Christmas. Needless to say I beat a hasty, Scrooge-like retreat! – Yours, etc, MARY P WILKINSON, Boleybeg, Barna, Co Galway. (September 27)

Duchess in the sun

Sir, – I was appalled and shocked to see that a woman of Kate Middleton’s education and status was sunbathing! – Yours, etc, ROSEMARY COLEMAN MD FRCPI, Consultant Dermatologist, Blackrock Clinic, Co Dublin. (September 19)


European Ryder Cup victory

Sir, – Surely the question of Rory McIlroy’s nationality has been settled once and for all by his rushed late arrival on the first tee at Medinah (October 2nd).

Whatever he thinks himself, he is clearly 100 per cent Irish. – Yours, etc, PAT GRIFFIN, Ardeevin Court, Lucan, Co Dublin. (Oct 3)

Political progress?

Sir, – Despite groundbreaking work by Bertie Ahern, I think Fianna Fáil should concede that the accolade for “most absurd sentence ever uttered by a politician in the line of duty” must now pass to Fine Gael and Dr James Reilly.

I am not sure if this is a sign of the continued, inexorable decline in Irish politics, or if it’s simply a logistical, logarithmic progression (Miriam Lord’s Dáil Sketch, October 4th). – Yours, etc, LARRY WALSH, Templeville Road, Templeogue, Dublin 6W. (October 9)


Changing face of ‘The Irish Times’

Sir, – I am delighted with the new format of The Irish Times. I can now read it in the bath without fear of damp corners. – Yours, etc, EMMET DALTON, Balkill Grove, Howth, Co Dublin. (November 7)

Sir, – Page-size just right. Typography more readable. Paper a bit too thin. News as bad as ever. – Yours, etc, JOHN QUINN, Stradbally North, Clarinbridge, Co Galway. (November 8)


Things I love/hate about Dublin

Sir, – Things I hate about Dublin: 33. The prattling pretentiousness and sneering snobbery of writers to The Irish Times. – Yours, etc, JG LACEY, Lough Atalia Grove, Renmore, Galway. (December 10)

Sir, – Things I love about Dublin: 96. Its generosity in taking the rap on the prattling pretentiousness charge for generations of down-the-country letter-writers like Galwayperson JG Lacey (December 10th) and yours truly. – Yours, etc, DENIS O’DONOGHUE, Countess Grove, Killarney, Co Kerry. (December 11)

E-readers on a roll

Sir, – Could the widespread adoption of rollable e-reading technology (Business+ Technology, December 6th) improve the content? Or is it a solution as to what to wrap our silicon chips in? – Yours, etc, ULTAN Ó BROIN, South Circular Road, Dublin 8. (Dec 10)