Romantic Ireland is dead (& exclusive after this short break)

“Granddad are you crying?”

“Ah young Jimmy I am indeed. ‘Tis a sad sad day for your old granddad. A sad day.”

“Why’s that Granddad?”

“Remember today Jimmy, it’s the day Ireland died. The country is ruined. They’ve sold the fecking GAA to the English. Godblast the bastards, god forgive me but they’ve sold the country’s birthright up the river. A sad sad day a stór.”

“They’ve sold the GAA to the who Granddad? Will we not be able to play it in Ireland anymore??”

No son, they’ve sold the rights to inter-county games to Sky feckin’ Sports. Fucking Rupert Murdoch showing the games of Christy Ring, Mick Mackey, Tommy Murphy and Xabi Alonso. Can you credit that??”

“So you have to have Sky now to watch any GAA?”

“Well no, Rté still have the majority of the games, including all the big games, but son it’s the principle. They took the games off a bloody Irish station, TV3. Why shouldn’t our games be free!? We should be allowed watch every GAA game going on the terrestrial stations.”

“Weren’t you always complaining about TV3 before saying they were terrible?”

Well yes, but…”

“Was every game on tv when you were my age Granddad?”

“Well no, but…..”

“Are the games going to be on the radio, local and national?”

Well yes, but…”

“Can we still go and watch the actual games when they are on even if they are on Sky Granddad?”

“Well yes, but…. It’s not right I tell you Jimmy, it’s not right. Them bloody English will ruin the game.”

“But Granddad don’t you always say that Rté need to up their game and that they could do with taking a look at home Sky do things, so maybe this will be good for the the GAA?”

“Well yes, but….. But Jimmy what about the poor oul fellas who can’t go to the games or can’t afford to get Sky Sports in? And what about young families and young fellas like yourself if the house doesn’t have the Sky. Forcing people to go to pubs to watch it. It’s a thundering disgrace I tell ya!”

“But Granddad what about all the GAA clubs up and down the country that have pubs on their grounds. Sure look at all the clubs in Kildare for example Granddad where out of 47 clubs only 7 have stands to keep their club members dry when they are watching games from under 8 to senior but more than three times that number have pubs? You know the grassroots Granddad that everyone talks about but no one from the ground up are really worried about. You know how it would be great that people could go and watch their sons, daughters, brothers and sisters playing GAA and not get a cold because the club put all their money into a pub, something which everyone now rails against? Or what about the clubs who have Sky Sports in the clubhouses and pubs anyway which helps the club make money in the bar over the winter when they are showing Premier League soccer matches and selling non-Irish alcohol? Could the clubs organise a bus to gather up the oul lads and young children in the area and bring them to the club to watch the rare games on Sky over the summer? Maybe create a wee bit of atmosphere and community spirit? You know try and create a positive out of the matter instead of being negative all the time? Sure remember you told me that the 1985 All Ireland semi-final replay with Mayo and Dublin wasn’t even shown live Granddad? And that it’s only since 1989 that provincial finals have been shown on Rté? Isn’t change inevitable Granddad and we should embrace it and use it for positive instead of being negative about every little thing? Imagine how great it will be to see our national game being enjoyed across the world. It could be great not just for the GAA as a sport, but also Ireland as a country. What do you think Granddad?”

“Feck off out of my sight ya little wanker.”

 

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