Wednesday, June 13, 2018

The Idler, Thursday, June 14, 2018

The Magheramore solution

THE "soft" border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland has become a major sticking point in the increasingly intractable wrangle over how Brexit can be implemented.

The soft border – no immigration controls, no customs barriers – is an essential part of Irish life both sides of the border and an essential part of the Good Friday Agreement, which has brought peace. It is difficult to see how this can be reconciled with Brexit.

Many blame David Cameron, the prime minister who called the Brexit referendum, for creating this can of worms. A simple majority should never be allowed to determine such a momentous and complex issue.

Meanwhile, down at Magheramore beach (in the South) 2 505 naked women have stormed into the sea, setting up a new Guinness World Record for "largest skinnydip", beating the 786 at Perth, Australia, in 2015.

This Brexit logjam requires unconventional resolution. How about getting the Magheramore gals to storm the North-South border in the nude (setting up yet another Guinness record), David Cameron posted there to turn them back? You never know what might happen. The shock might concentrate minds all round. 'Twould be just deserts for Cameron.

Walls of Canada?

IS THE Great Wall of Mexico to be joined by the Great Walls of Canada?

President Donald Trump left America's traditional allies – all of them - reeling as he stomped out of the G7 meeting in Canada for talks with America's traditional rogue opponent, North Korea.

Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau's rebuke that his country would respond to US trade tariffs drew a response from a Trump adviser that Trudeau deserves "a special place in hell."

Is there such a thing as the "western alliance" any longer?

Trump has already promised to build a 3 200km wall shutting off Mexico from the US. Howick's resident theoretical physicist, Rob Nicolai, suggests that, given the verbal pyrotechnics, Canada could be the next to be walled off.

But, he points out, besides the main border with Canada (6 379km), there's the border further north between Canada and Alaska, which is 2 460km.

That would be a lot of wall – 12 039km in total. But what a boost it would give the American construction industry.


A TEXAN man was rushed to hospital after being bitten by a dead rattlesnake. And it really was dead. He'd just decapitated it with a spade when he spotted the 1m snake in his garden in Corpus Christi.

His wife, Jennifer Sutcliffe, told local TV station KIII that it bit him when he picked up the head to dispose of it.

He was flown to hospital by helicopter, in a critical condition, and began to recover only after 26 doses of anti-venom

Old cash

Bundles of decaying Second World War banknotes, probably stashed away in case of Nazi invasion have been discovered under the floorboards of an old clothes store in England.

Shopfitters found the cash on the site of what was once Bradley Gowns - now a Cotswold Outdoor store - in Brighton, according to Sky News.

The hoard of £1 and £5 notes adds up to about £30 000, which is the equivalent of more than £1 million (R18m) today.

Bradley Gowns - which had a flagship store in London - had a number of famous clientele, including members of the royal family and Winston Churchill.

The money was covered in dirt and debris  is now in the possession of Sussex Police for safekeeping.

Howard Bradley - sole surviving heir of the family that ran the chain of shops - says he believes it had been hidden in case the Nazis mounted a successful campaign on British soil.



DIALOGUE IN A New York bar.

"Where are you from?"


"Dat's amazin'. I'm from Dublin too. Let's have a drink to ould Ireland."

"Of course."

"What school were you at?"

"St Mary's. I graduated in 1962.

"Dat's amazin'. So was I. I also graduated in 1962. Let's have anudder drink on dat."

"Of course."

The manager comes in. He asks the barman: "Anything much doing?"

"Nothin' much. Just the O'Flaherty twins getting' plastered again."


Last word

On the whole human beings want to be good, but not too good, and not quite all the time.

George Orwell

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