An American in Irelandby The Yank
- Ireland as Britain's wind farm - weighing up the pros and cons of ugly and heavily subsized Irish windfarms
- Justin Bieber's perfectly judged comment on Anne Frank - "Hopefully she would have been a belieber"
- The Irish property tax problem - everyone wants to own some and no one wants to be taxed on it
- American fans right to ignore the World Baseball Classic
- Will Ireland's emigrants catch a break on property tax?
in Davos, Switzerland.
Ireland's Prime Minister Enda Kenny will be speaking at Harvard University on February 16 and if his past form is anything to go by, he will denounce the Irish people as a bunch of over-educated elitists in the hope of eliciting praise from the Harvard audience. Or something like that.
I can hear you from here. "This guy's nuts. No elected leader would do such a thing."
Nothing stays the same, even death, in Ireland as elsewhere. The traditional rituals and ceremonies surrounding an Irish funeral are not what they were 100 or even 50 years ago. Yet, as I learned this past week, death in modern Ireland, even in suburban Dublin, still retains many of the old ways.
When I was growing up an Irish wake was the subject of a joke built around a stereotype of Irishness. "What's the difference between an Irish wedding and an Irish wake? One less drunk." Unflattering, yet my teen self often wondered what was so bad about a celebratory wake? Everything I knew about death seemed so forbidding and frightening that I kind of liked the idea of laughing in its face.