28th September, 2000

The first public meeting of the newly formed Douglas Tidy Town's committee took place last Thursday night at the community centre. Although the attendance was small the people who turned up on the night gave their opinions on what they saw as some of the problems facing Douglas, now that we have decided to enter Douglas in the Tidy Town's competition. Local businessmen Sean Fitzgerald of Daily's, Dave Halpin of Eco's Restaurant and Derek Rusk of Douglas Court Shopping Centre were also there. I thought one of the best suggestions and offers came from Derek Rusk who offered the committee a stand in the shopping centre to highlight the formation and future plans of the Tidy Town's committee. Thousands of people pass through the two shopping centres every week, and a stand with a backdrop of Douglas (another suggestion from Derek) would be a great way to tell the people of their future plans for Douglas as a tidy town's entrant. We will keep you informed as things develop.

I didn't see it but I'm told the Late Late Show was fairly controversial last Friday night. Two of the guests were a paedophile and his victim. Listening to Eamon Dunphy on his radio show today, I learnt that there is a movement within some European countries which is beginning to promote the message that that adults who have an unlawful interest in children are really not that bad, and that we should recognise the fact and understand their needs, maybe they want us to think it's only a game they want to play. My suggestion would be that if you wish to play a game, play amongst themselves, a game of blind mans bluff on a windy night on the white cliffs of Dover, I'll pay their fare.

What is happening with Irish Multi Channel lately? Every second night and day we are losing sound, picture, it’s going from bad to worse. Last night Sunday at 8.30 we lost BBC 1 BBC 2, Channel 4 and UTV, and we were left with Rupert Murdoch Bilge, Sky, and The Monster from Outer Space. I wonder do the Murdoch family all sit around the telly with popcorn and a few six packs watching “The World's Scariest Car Chases” He's turning us all into idiots, and we love it! However I fought the urge and called into M&M video club and took a video home.

Now we come to the subject of Lotto. A reader told me that he checked his lotto ticket on Saturday night to discover that he had four numbers, and on Sunday he was 35 richer. Last Wednesday night he called into his local shop to do the midweek lotto, he gave the assistant the slip with his winning numbers to pay for the Wednesday night. The assistant scanned it and told the customer “No Win” his ticket was not returned, he asked for his ticket, (which the assistant had crumpled) to be returned to him, it was. He demanded to see the manager who was not on duty. He is calling back to the shop. His point to me was that if one buy a lb. of ham in a shop the weight and the price is seen both by the shop assistant and the customer. However with the lotto machine only the assistant sees the result of screening the customer's ticket. The screen result should be two ways, it should print “Win” or “No Win” that way people behind the winner wouldn't know how much the customer has won. My reader also suggested that the machine emit a winning or losing sound, especially for customers who are visually impaired. I am sure 99% of shop assistants are honest but it's the 1% that worries me especially if they operate a lotto machine. I am sending a copy of this article to Ray Bates C/O National Lottery, I will let you know if I get a reply.

Next Friday night Oct 6th is the annual Douglas Weekly person of the year awards night. As most of you now know the recipient of this year's award is Michael O' Mahony, Principle of Regina Mundi Girls College Douglas. Michael's contribution to the education of thousands of young girls in their formative years has been enormous. I have spoken to many of his former and present students. Anytime I asked the question “What is Michael O' Mahony like? Back came the answers “He's sweet” “ He's a dote” He's very nice”. I met Michael last week in Dunmahon Esso Service Station (opposite Regina Mundi) he was buying a sandwich for his lunch, I said “Michael don't get knocked down crossing that busy road, especially before the 6th Oct, it would ruin the big night”

Some time ago he told me he loved the music of ABBA, so on his special night music will be provided by Abbaesque a band as close to the real ABBA as one will get, and our own Declan Ryan will be the support act on the night. P.S. Michael promised he'd have his dancing shoes on to dance the night away. The carvery in Rochestown Park Hotel will be open from 6.00pm on the night, so if you feel like a meal before the show the Rochestown Park Hotel is the place to be on Friday Oct 6th. Tickets are on sale from the hotel, Laser Discs, Blacktrack Record Store, Dunmahon Esso Service Station, Douglas Road and the Douglas Weekly office. Hope to see you there. Altogether now, “Friday night and the lights are low, looking out for a place to go”

Congratulations to the Cork Minor football team and the big contribution made by our local players. Good luck to Nemo Rangers on Sunday, belated birthday wishes to Joe Lynch (who does a great job keeping Douglas clean) and also to Ned Breen. Get well soon to Hilda Mulcahy.

Stop Press! This morning Wednesday the rain is teeming down and an angry reader who lives in Donnybrook just rang to complain about the “Lake” at the end of Donnybrook hill (opposite Breens) pedestrians are being soaked by passing cars. County Council please take note!

Bye for Now,
Michael O’Hanlon.

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