Last week I had the great fortune to be approached by the reputable boys from TheScumGentry.com, a high brow online enterprise consisting of poets, musicians and essayists. They wanted me to attend a trade union march in Dublin and write up my interpretation of the day’s events. For me, this was a very welcome development. Aside from a widely acclaimed article published in “Irelands Own” magazine in 1996, my writing career had of late slipped into something of a slumber and my work as a lobbyist had died along with Charles Haughey. Did this new offer mark the beginning of a new era for Garret O’Gorman? Had the scandalous allegations made against me in the past been forgotten?
The young lads intended for me to publish my piece by Sunday evening. Unfortunate circumstances have meant that this deadline was not met. When I travelled to Dublin to attend the March, my first stop was my usual place of rest – the Shelbourne hotel. Unfortunately, she was all booked up. An unexpected setback but there is plenty of other premium hotels in Dublin. I moved onto my next favourite. Again, all booked out. After trying several of Dublin’s finest hotels and some of the not-so-fine ones, it dawned on me what was happening. The fat-cat union bosses, descending on the city like a plague of lazy locusts, had taken all of the best rooms in the city. With the beginning of the march fast approaching and not a hotel room in sight, things looked grim.
It being inconceivable that a gentleman so esteemed as myself could sleep rough, I realised that I had to accept the least bad option – the dreaded youth hostel. I checked into a dingy dive called Isaacs. This explains my tardiness in completing this great piece. A true writer (one who has been proclaimed as an enigmatic genius, no less) could not work in these environs. I was surrounded by the travelling youth of Europe. You know the type - all dreadlocks and trendy glasses. Each one of them playing nomad with mother and father’s hard earned money and forever bemoaning the system, man. When I returned to pen down my thoughts, I was of course unable to do so. Hence my failure to meet the deadline.
But I digress. Although blameless for my circumstances, a true Irishman makes no excuses. He can only valiantly bear the burden of his misfortune. The march - that is what I must tell of. I arrived at the gathering point on Cook Street exactly at the designated time, as is my habit. Upon looking around, and observing the wretches that had gathered, I began to feel ill. What greeted me was the worst of Irish society. Holding back the bilious reaction that was ascending from my gut, I noted an assortment of trade unionists, scroungers, dole scum, single mothers and worst of all – crusties. In short, the worst of Irish society had gathered for this march.