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As ten brave, single men from across the five boroughs prepare for a private interview, on stage performance, and party piece in the hopes of being crowned New York's Bachelor of the Year in Gaelic Park on February 16, there's only one man to put them through their paces. That man is the Irish Aisling Center’s Bachelor of the Year’s host, Dáithí Ó Sé.
IrishCentral Community News caught up with Ireland's (once) most famous bachelor during the week via a phone call to Ireland, while he chilled out in his hotel room in Cork following a long day of work hosting the 'Today' show which airs Monday through Thursday on RTE television in Ireland.
Dáithí began his television and broadcasting career with TG4 in 1999, following stints as a teacher, butcher and chancing his arm in the circus before rising to his current fame with RTE.
Over the years he has delivered the news and weather through his native Irish and had some hit US based series with TG4 including 'Dáithí ar Route 66'. The fluent Irish speaker was a judge on Ireland's Got Talent and in 2010 he became the host of The International Rose of Tralee.
This particular Irish charmer is used to being swamped by dozens of beautiful women on stage so he does admit that the bachelor event will be a change, but boy is he ready.
"Don't get me wrong, I always am polite, but I don't need to be near as polite with these men on stage as I am with the women. I stick with the nice questions with the lovely ladies and they are more inclined to tell you more information and give you insight into the kind of person they are, whereas with men the information is harder to get out, you need to tug at them a bit. The lads may think I don't know a lot because we've never met and I'm thousands of miles away, but I have some secret agents in New York doing some background research, so I am getting all the dirt. Believe me, I have my homework done,” he told IrishCentral Community News.
If anyone knows what the life of a bachelor is like, it's O Se himself. Daithi was without a doubt Ireland's number one bachelor for years on end, before breaking the hearts of thousands of women across Ireland and marrying his wife, Rita Talty, the 2008 New Jersey Rose, in July 2012. The pair met in 2008 while Daithi was a judge in the competition. Since trading single life for wedded bliss, O Se admits he couldn't be happier.
"I'm loving married life. Rita is an amazing woman and she comes from a great family. When I knew I was in love with Rita, I took one good look at her mother who she is very like and I just thought, well if that's what Rita's going to look like then YES, I'm going to marry this woman!"
Before popping the question Daithi did something that raised a debate afterwards, but he is convinced it is the right thing to do.
"Before I asked Rita to marry me, I went to her father for his permission for her hand in marriage. Some call it old-fashioned, others call it sexist, but the way I see it is being respectful from one man to another. I was thinking this man is my future father in-law! He reacted well, and I definitely believe this is something for all men to consider before proposing and it is advice to these ten bachelors for the future for when they eventually find "the one."”
From weather announcing, to entertaining crowds, to getting down on one knee, nerves never get in the way of O Se. The thought of being stood beside ten hunky bachelors does not intimidate him.
"I have been there before. I know all the tricks of the trade of a bachelor. I am there to have the craic with these lads and to advise them. They should be charismatic and have plenty of life experience. But at the same time, I'm looking for a shower of blaggards!"
The 36-year-old is anticipating his flying visit in New York after being unable to visit at Christmas due to work demands, and is happy to return to the Bronx and Gaelic Park.
"The last time I was in Gaelic Park, I think, it was summer 2003. We were filming about the Aisling Irish Centre. I am familiar with all they work do for the Irish community throughout New York and they really do a great job. I know they have put so much effort into re-launching the Bachelor of the Year event, and it is for a great cause so I was thrilled to be asked to be the host of the night."