Where the wild roses grow

In February 1995, Nick Cave released the album “Murder Ballads”. On the album is one of my all time favourite songs “Where the wild roses grow”

Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds and Kylie Minogue first performed the song publicly on 4 August 1995 in Cork, Republic of Ireland. I have often wondered why they picked Cork, maybe it was because the song was based on an Irish legend, The legend of Elisa Day.

It is tale from Medieval Ireland about a woman named Elisa Day whose beauty was like a wild rose. A young man came to town a fell in love with her. On the third day, he took her down to the river—where he killed her.

Legend has it that her beauty was like that of the wild roses that grew down the river, all bloody and red. One day, the young came to the small town where Elisa lived. He instantly fell in love with her.
On the first day, he visited her where she lived. The next day he gifted her with a single red rose. After this, he asked Elisa to meet him where the wild roses grow. Their short lived relationship only lasted for 3 days.
On the 3rd and the last day, he took her down by the river where he killed her. He waited until her back was turned, before striking her with a large rock in the back of the head. He then whispered, “All beauty must die” — and with one swift blow, he killed her instantly.
After she died, the young evil man placed a single red rose between her teeth and pushed her body into the river below.

“On the third day he took me to the river
He showed me the roses and we kissed
And the last thing I heard was a muttered word
As he stood smiling above me with a rock in his fist.

On the last day I took her where the wild roses grow
And she lay on the bank, the wind light as a thief
As I kissed her goodbye, I said, ‘All beauty must die’
And lent down and planted a rose between her teeth.”

Elisa’s body was never recovered, not was the exact location ever revealed. Yet there are still people now who claim to have seen the ghost of Elisa Day floating over the rivers.

sources

https://www.redriverradio.org/commentary/2017-11-23/shadow-files-the-tale-of-elisa-day

https://www.song-bar.com/song-of-the-day/nick-cave-kylie-minogue-where-the-wild-roses-grow

Who is an immigrant? I am one.

The buzzword nowadays is “immigrants” and in hardly any context it is used in a positive way. Here is the thing though, who is an immigrant?

This is just a micro snapshot in history. It is basically a background of my family well at least from my Mother’s side.

The picture at the start of the blog is a picture of the marriage certificate of my maternal grandparents. They got married on December 28,1915.

The groom Durk Jager, the bride Tetje Hoekstra. They lived and were married in a small village in Friesland, in the Northwest of the Netherlands. The village Harkema-opeinde was part of the wider municipality of Achtkarspelen.

It was a rural place and there was not much work to be got. In Limburg, in the Southeast of the Netherlands, there was plenty  of work though. This was because of the ‘black gold’, coal . In the early part of the 20th century. Between 1906 and 1926 coal mines were opened in the most southern province bringing with it job opportunities, not just only in the coal industry but also in the wider economy.

The biggest and the last one to be opened was States mine Maurits in Geleen, which opened in 1926.

That was the call for my grand parents to pack up things and uproot the family for a journey southward to Geleen. Even though the Netherlands is just a small country, in the 1920s a journey like that was the equivalent of emigrating to the US or Canada nowadays.

I used the term emigrating because that is what they were doing. The place they were going to was alien to them. Coming from Friesland they had their own language, a different culture and also a different religion, Friesland being a predominantly Protestant province where Limburg was a predominantly Catholic province. Even the landscape was different.

The new immigrants arrived in Limburg and had to adapt to a new way of life.My Grandparents weren’t the only ones to leave Friesland, because of the lack of work in Friesland a great number of Frisians chanced their luck in the hilly area of the Southern part of Limburg.

I am an immigrant too, because I left that same hilly area of southern Limburg for the emerald isle, Ireland. I emigrated because of my wife, who had emigrated from Ireland to the Netherlands 6 years prior.

In 1997 we decided to move to Limerick in Ireland.

So many people have immigrated over the centuries, when you go back far enough in history you will discover that most of us come from an immigrant background.

So next time someone talks in a disparaging manner about immigrants , just remember they maybe talking about you or your family.

(originally posted on January 15, 2019. Reposted with minor amendments January 10,2022)

Donation

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Anglo-Irish Treaty-Ireland’s independence.

I remember the celebration in 2016 when Ireland was commemorating the centenary of the Easter Rising. There had already been events months beforehand. On 20 January 2016. Ireland’s first ever commemorative €2 coin went into circulation to mark the centenary year of the Easter Rising.

The Easter Rising , was an armed insurrection in Ireland during Easter Week in April 1916. The Rising was launched by Irish republicans against British rule in Ireland with the aim of establishing an independent Irish Republic. Of course this event needed to be remembered, because it was such an important step towards Irish independence.

However, fast forward to today, December 6 2021, and you will find there are hardly any events planned. Even though today marks the centenary of an even more important event in Irish history, the signing of the Anglo-Irish treaty.

The Treaty formally ended the War of Independence, set the stage for British withdrawal from most of Ireland, and the handover of power to an independent Irish government.

It was signed in 10 Downing Street at 2.20 AM on the 6th of December 1921.The treaty created an Irish Free State that was to be afforded the same status as Canada, a self-governing dominion within the British Empire.

It was signed on the Irish side by delegates Arthur Griffith, Michael Collins, Eamon Duggan, Robert Barton and George Gavan Duffy.

On the British side were Prime Minister David Lloyd-George, Winston Churchill, Austen Chamberlain and FE Smith, Lord Birkenhead.

The Treaty gave Ireland independence, but as a member of the British Commonwealth, and not as a Republic. In 1937 Ireland adopted a new constitution and in 1948 it declared itself a republic.

There would be no all-island unity, as Northern Ireland could decide to – and did – remain outside the new state. An oath of allegiance was to be sworn by TDs. The British Navy would keep access to several seaports. The Irish delegates signed the Treaty after being warned by Lloyd-George that refusal to do so would mean that the War of Independence would resume within days.

The delegates argued that it was the best possible deal under the circumstances, but critics at home, led by President Eamon de Valera, claimed the signing was done under duress and so was invalid.

The Dáil, Irish Parliament, approved the new treaty after nine days of public debate on 7 January 1922, by a vote of 64 to 57, but it was not the assembly specified in the treaty. Therefore its approval of the treaty was not enough to satisfy the requirements of the treaty. The “meeting” required under the terms of the treaty was therefore convened. It formally approved the treaty on 14 January 1922. The “meeting” itself had a somewhat ambiguous status, not being convened or conducted in accordance with the procedures established for the House of Commons, nor being declared a session of Dáil Éireann. Anti-treaty members of the Dáil stayed away, meaning only pro-treaty members and the four elected unionists (who had never sat in Dáil Éireann) attended the meeting. Those assembled overwhelmingly approved the treaty, nominated Michael Collins for appointment as chairman of the provisional government and immediately dispersed with no parliamentary business taking place. This was the nearest that the House of Commons of Southern Ireland ever came to functioning; no other meeting ever took place, but the vote on 14 January, in strict compliance with the treaty wording, allowed the British authorities to maintain that the legal niceties had been observed.

The text of the treaty

  1. Ireland shall have the same constitutional status in the Community of Nations known as the British Empire as the Dominion of Canada, the Commonwealth of Australia, the Dominion of New Zealand and the Union of South Africa, with a Parliament having powers to make laws for the peace, order and good government of Ireland and an Executive responsible to that Parliament, and shall be styled and known as the Irish Free State.
  2. Subject to the provisions hereinafter set out the position of the Irish Free State in relation to the Imperial Parliament and Government and otherwise shall be that of the Dominion of Canada, and the law practice and constitutional usage governing the relationship of the Crown or the representative of the Crown and of the Imperial Parliament to the Dominion of Canada shall govern their relationship to the Irish Free State.
  3. The representative of the Crown in Ireland shall be appointed in like manner as the Governor-General of. Canada and in accordance with the practice observed in the making of such appointments.
  4. The oath to be taken by Members of the Parliament of the Irish Free State shall be in the following form:

I …………………. do solemnly swear true faith and allegiance to the Constitution of the Irish Free State as by law established and that I will be faithful to H.M. King George V, his heirs and successors by law, in virtue of the common citizenship of Ireland with Great Britain and her adherence to and membership of the group of nations forming the British Commonwealth of Nations.

  1. The Irish Free State shall assume liability for the service of the Public Debt of the United Kingdom as existing at the date hereof and towards the payment of war pensions as existing at that date in such proportion as may be fair and equitable, having regard to any just claims on the part of Ireland by way of set-off or counter-claim, the amount of such sums being determined in default of agreement by the arbitration of one or more independent persons being citizens of the British Empire.
  2. Until an arrangement has been made between the British and Irish Governments whereby the Irish Free State undertakes her own coastal defence, the defence by sea of Great Britain and Ireland shall be undertaken by His Majesty’s Imperial Forces. But this shall not prevent the construction or maintenance by the Government of the Irish Free State of such vessels as are necessary for the protection of the Revenue or the Fisheries.
    The foregoing provisions of this Article shall be reviewed at a Conference of Representatives of the British and Irish Governments to be held at the expiration of five years from the date hereof with a view to a share in her own coastal defence.
  3. The Government of the Irish Free State shall afford to His Majesty’s Imperial Forces:

(a) In time of peace such harbour and other facilities as are indicated in the Annex hereto, or such other facilities as may from time to time be agreed between the British Government and the Government of the Irish Free State; and
(b) In time of war or of strained relations with a Foreign Power such harbour and other facilities as the British Government may require for the purposes of such defence as aforesaid.

  1. With a view to securing the observance of the principle of international limitation of armaments, if the Government of the Irish Free State establishes and maintains a military defence force, the establishments thereof shall not exceed in size such proportion of the military establishments maintained in Great Britain as that which the population of Ireland bears to the population of Great Britain.
  2. The ports of Great Britain and the Irish Free State shall be freely open to the ships of the other country on payment of the customary port and other dues.
  3. The Government of the Irish Free State agrees to pay fair compensation on terms not less favourable than those accorded by the Act of 1920 to judges, officials, members of Police Forces and other Public Servants who are discharged by it or who retire in consequence of the change of Government effected in pursuance hereof.
    Provided that this agreement shall not apply to members of the Auxiliary Police Force or to persons recruited in Great Britain for the Royal Irish Constabulary during the two years next preceding the date hereof. The British Government will assume responsibility for such compensation or pensions as may be payable to any of these excepted persons.
  4. Until the expiration of one month from the passing of the Act of Parliament for the ratification of this instrument, the powers of the Parliament and the Government of the Irish Free State shall not be exercisable as respects Northern Ireland and the provisions of the Government of Ireland Act, 1920, shall so far as they relate to Northern Ireland remain of full force and effect, and no election shall be held for the return of members to serve in the Parliament of the Irish Free State for constituencies in Northern Ireland, unless a resolution is passed by both Houses of the Parliament of Northern Ireland in favour of the holding of such election before the end of the said month.
  5. If before the expiration of the said month, an address is presented to His Majesty by both Houses of the Parliament of Northern Ireland to that effect, the powers of the Parliament and Government of the Irish Free State shall no longer extend to Northern Ireland, and the provisions of the Government of Ireland Act., 1920 (including those relating to the Council of Ireland) shall, so far as they relate to Northern Ireland continue to be of full force and effect, and this instrument shall have effect subject to the necessary modifications.

Provided that if such an address is so presented a Commission consisting of three Persons, one to be appointed by the Government of the Irish Free State, one to be appointed by the Government of Northern Ireland and one who shall be Chairman to be appointed by the British Government shall determine in accordance with the wishes of the inhabitants, so far as may be compatible with economic and geographic conditions, the boundaries between Northern Ireland and the rest of Ireland, and for the purposes of the Government of Ireland Act, 1920, and of this instrument, the boundary of Northern Ireland shall be such as may be determined by such Commission.

  1. For the purpose of the last foregoing article, the powers of the Parliament of Southern Ireland under the Government of Ireland Act, 1920, to elect members of the Council of Ireland shall after the Parliament of the Irish Free State is constituted be exercised by that Parliament.
  2. After the expiration of the said month, if no such address as is mentioned in Article 12 hereof is Presented, the Parliament and Government of Northern Ireland shall continue to exercise as respects Northern Ireland the powers conferred on them by the Government of Ireland Act, 1920, but the Parliament and Government of the Irish Free State shall in Northern Ireland have in relation to matters in respect of which the Parliament of Northern Ireland has not power to make laws under that Act (including matters which under the said Act are within the jurisdiction of the Council of Ireland) the same powers as in the rest of Ireland, subject to such other provisions as may he agreed in manner hereinafter appearing.
  3. At any time after the date hereof the Government of Northern Ireland and the provisional Government of Southern Ireland hereinafter constituted may meet for the purpose of discussing the provisions subject to which the last foregoing article is to operate in the event of no such address as is therein mentioned being presented and those provisions may include:

(a) Safeguards with regard to patronage in Northern Ireland:
(b) Safeguards with regard to the collection of revenue in Northern Ireland:

(c) Safeguards with regard to import and export duties affecting the trade or industry of Northern Ireland:

(d) Safeguards for minorities in Northern Ireland:

(c) The settlement of the financial relations between Northern Ireland and the Irish Free State:

(f) The establishment and powers of a local militia in Northern Ireland and the relation of the Defence Forces of the Irish Free State and of Northern Ireland respectively:

and if at any such meeting provisions are agreed to, the same shall have effect as if they were included amongst the provisions subject to which the Powers of the Parliament and Government of the Irish Free State are to be exercisable in Northern Ireland under Article 14 hereof.

  1. Neither the Parliament of the Irish Free State nor the Parliament of Northern Ireland shall make any law so as either directly or indirectly to endow any religion or. prohibit or restrict the free exercise thereof or give any preference or impose any disability on account of religious belief or religious status or affect prejudicially the right of any child to attend a school receiving public money without attending religious instruction at the school or make any discrimination as respects state aid between schools under the management of different religious denominations or divert from any religious denomination. or any educational institution any of its property except for public utility purposes and on payment of compensation.
  2. By way of provisional arrangement for the administration of Southern Ireland during the interval which must elapse between the date hereof and the constitution of a Parliament and Government of the Irish Free State in accordance therewith, steps shall be taken forthwith for summoning a meeting of members of Parliament elected for constituencies in Southern Ireland since the passing of the Government of Ireland Act, 1920, and for constituting a provisional Government, and the British Government shall take the steps necessary to transfer to such provisional Government the powers and machinery requisite for the discharge of its duties, provided that every member of such provisional Government shall have signified in writing his or her acceptance of this instrument. But this arrangement shall not continue in force beyond the expiration of twelve months from the date hereof.
  3. This instrument shall be submitted forthwith by is Majesty’s Government for the approval of Parliament and by the Irish signatories to a meeting summoned for the purpose of the members elected to sit in the House of Commons of Southern Ireland, and if approved shall be ratified by the necessary legislation.

De Valera did not accept the result, and led opponents out of the Dáil in protest. This began the chain of events that led to the outbreak of the Civil War six months later.

sources

https://www.rte.ie/news/2021/1206/1264949-anglo-irish-treaty/

https://cain.ulster.ac.uk/issues/politics/docs/ait1921.htm

https://www.onthisday.com/photos/anglo-irish-treaty

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anglo-Irish_Treaty

https://www.museum.ie/en-IE/Collections-Research/Collection/Documentation-Discoveries/Artefact/The-Signing-of-the-Anglo-Irish-Treaty,-1921/7a49e7e5-7cf7-4218-b3b4-c974d4adafa6

Donation

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The Origins of Halloween.

Many people think that Halloween is a festival of evil, where the aim is to scare people by dressing up in very scary costumes, or what I find more bizarre is the whole “trick or treat” notion. Everyday we tell our kids not to take sweets or candies from strangers, come 31 October we turn the world upside down and say “Go out children, fear not and go to those stranger’s houses and ask them for treats”

However that is not what Halloween is really about.

Halloween originated with the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain, when people would light bonfires and wear costumes to ward off ghosts. In the eighth century, Pope Gregory III designated November 1 as a time to honor all saints. Soon, All Saints Day incorporated some of the traditions of Samhain. The evening before was known as All Hallows Eve, and later Halloween. Over time, Halloween evolved into a day of activities like trick-or-treating, carving jack-o-lanterns, festive gatherings, donning costumes and eating treats.

Samain or Samuin was the name of the festival (feis) marking the beginning of winter in Gaelic Ireland. It is attested in the earliest Old Irish literature, which dates from the 10th century onward.

Samhain had three distinct elements. Firstly, it was an important fire festival, celebrated over the evening of 31 October and throughout the following day.

To commemorate the event, Druids built huge sacred bonfires, where the people gathered to burn crops and animals as sacrifices to the Celtic deities. During the celebration, the Celts wore costumes, typically consisting of animal heads and skins, and attempted to tell each other’s fortunes. The flames of old fires had to be extinguished and ceremonially re-lit by druids.

It was also a festival not unlike the modern New Year’s Day in that it carried the notion of casting out the old and moving into the new.

To our pagan ancestors it marked the end of the pastoral cycle – a time when all the crops would have been gathered and placed in storage for the long winter ahead and when livestock would be brought in from the fields and selected for slaughter or breeding.

But it was also, as the last day of the year, the time when the souls of the departed would return to their former homes and when potentially malevolent spirits were released from the Otherworld and were visible to mankind.

In addition to causing trouble and damaging crops, Celts thought that the presence of the otherworldly spirits made it easier for the Druids, or Celtic priests, to make predictions about the future. For a people entirely dependent on the volatile natural world, these prophecies were an important source of comfort during the long, dark winter.

The early pagan holiday of Samhain involved a lot of ritualistic ceremonies to connect to spirits, as the Celts were polytheistic. While there isn’t a lot of detail known about these celebrations, many believe the Celts celebrated in costume ,basically , they were likely as simple as animal hides, as a disguise against ghosts, enjoyed special feasts, and made lanterns by hollowing out gourds.

The Celts also set out gifts of food, hoping to win the favor of the spirits of those who had died in the past year. They also disguised themselves so the spirits of the dead wouldn’t recognize them.

By the 9th century, the influence of Christianity had spread into Celtic lands, where it gradually blended with and supplanted older Celtic rites. In 1000 A.D., the church made November 2 All Souls’ Day, a day to honor the dead. It’s widely believed today that the church was attempting to replace the Celtic festival of the dead with a related, church-sanctioned holiday. Over time, as Christianity took over and the pagan undertones of the holiday were lessened, the basic traditions of the holiday remained a part of pop culture every year; they simply evolved and modernized.

The word Halloween or Hallowe’en dates to about 1745 and is of Christian origin. The word Hallowe’en means “Saints’ evening”. It comes from a Gaelic term for All Hallows’ Eve (the evening before All Hallows’ Day).

There are several games traditionally associated with Halloween. Some of these games originated as divination rituals or ways of foretelling one’s future, especially regarding death, marriage and children. During the Middle Ages, these rituals were done by a “rare few” in rural communities as they were considered to be “deadly serious” practices. In recent centuries, these divination games have been “a common feature of the household festivities” in Ireland and Britain. They often involve apples and hazelnuts. In Celtic mythology, apples were strongly associated with the Otherworld and immortality, while hazelnuts were associated with divine wisdom. Some also suggest that they derive from Roman practices in celebration of Pomona.

The following activities were a common feature of Halloween in Ireland and Britain during the 17th–20th centuries. Some have become more widespread and continue to be popular today. One common game is apple bobbing or dunking , in which apples float in a tub or a large basin of water and the participants must use only their teeth to remove an apple from the basin. A variant of dunking involves kneeling on a chair, holding a fork between the teeth and trying to drive the fork into an apple. Another common game involves hanging up treacle or syrup-coated scones by strings; these must be eaten without using hands while they remain attached to the string, an activity that inevitably leads to a sticky face. Another once-popular game involves hanging a small wooden rod from the ceiling at head height, with a lit candle on one end and an apple hanging from the other. The rod is spun round and everyone takes turns to try to catch the apple with their teeth.

Many people were said to dress up as saints and recite songs or verses door to door. Children would also go door to door asking for “soul cakes,” a treat similar to biscuits. Technical note: Soul cakes originated as part of the All Souls’ Day holiday on November 2 , but eventually became a part of Halloween night as the concept evolved into trick-or-treating. The candy-grabbing concept also became mainstream in the U.S. in the early to mid-1900s, during which families would provide treats to children in hopes that they would be immune to any holiday pranks.

How trick-or-treating became a tradition


But how did those Celtic traditions evolve into one of children trick-or-treating in costumes for fun and candy—not for safety from spirits?

According to the fifth edition of Holiday Symbols and Customs, in as early as the 16th century, it was customary in England for those who were poor to go begging on All Souls’ Day, and children eventually took over the custom. At the time, it was popular to give children cakes with crosses on top called “soul cakes” in exchange for prayers on your behalf.

Lisa Morton, author of Trick or Treat: A History of Halloween, traced one of the earliest mentions of typical Halloween celebrations to a letter from Queen Victoria about spending Halloween around a bonfire in Scotland in 1869.

“Having made the circuit of the Castle,” the letter said, “the remainder of the torches were thrown in a pile at the south-west corner, thus forming a large bonfire, which was speedily augmented with other combustibles until it formed a burning mass of huge proportions, round which dancing was spiritedly carried on.”

Morton writes that people in the American middle class often were anxious to imitate their British cousins, which would explain a short story printed in 1870 that painted Halloween as an English holiday celebrated by children with fortune-telling and games to win treats.

However, Morton writes that it’s possible that trick-or-treating may be a more recent tradition that, surprisingly, may have been inspired by Christmas.

A popular 18th- and 19th-century Christmas custom called belsnickling in the eastern areas of the U.S. and Canada was similar to trick-or-treating: Groups of costumed participants would go from house to house to perform small tricks in exchange for food and drink. Some belsnicklers even deliberately frightened young children at houses before asking if they had been good enough to earn a treat. And other early descriptions say that those handing out treats had to guess the identities of the disguised revelers, giving food to anyone they couldn’t identify.

In the 19th century, “tricks”—such as rattling windows and tying doors shut—were often made to look as though supernatural forces had conjured them. Some people offered candy as a way to protect their homes from pranksters, who might wreak havoc by disassembling farm equipment and reassembling it on a rooftop. By the early 20th century, some property owners had even begun to fight back and lawmakers encouraged communities to keep children in check with wholesome fun.

These pranks likely gave rise to the use of the phrase “trick-or-treat.” Barry Popik, an etymologist, traced the earliest usage of the phrase in connection with Halloween to a 1927 Alberta newspaper article reporting on pranksters demanding “trick or treat” at houses.

So you see there is a lot more to Halloween then just getting dressed up, trick or treating or Jamie Lee Curtis being chased by Michael Myers.

sources

https://www.irish-genealogy-toolkit.com/origin-of-Halloween.html

https://www.nationalgeographic.com/culture/article/the-history-of-trick-or-treating-and-how-it-became-a-halloween-tradition

https://www.countryliving.com/entertaining/a40250/heres-why-we-really-celebrate-halloween/

https://www.history.com/topics/halloween/history-of-halloween

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halloween

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samhain

Donation

I am passionate about my site and I know you all like reading my blogs. I have been doing this at no cost and will continue to do so. All I ask is for a voluntary donation of $2 ,however if you are not in a position to do so I can fully understand, maybe next time then. Thanks To donate click on the credit/debit card icon of the card you will use. If you want to donate more then $2 just add a higher number in the box left from the paypal link. Many thanks

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Nazi Costumes for Halloween.

I was on Irish National radio this afternoon, discussing the sale of Nazi uniforms as Halloween costumes in Ireland.

It was on Joe Duffy’s Liveline show. I enjoyed being on it but the show was a small bit manipulated. I had received a call from one of the researchers at 10 am this morning. He asked me my opinion about the sale of Nazi costumes for Halloween. I told him that I was in principle against it, The researcher told me that the show was approached by a lady who had seen the costumes, and he sent me a link.

I replied to his email.

“Hi D,

Sorry I missed your call.
The outfits are offensive ,If you allow this then you have to allow KKK, Black and Tan, Paedophile Priest outfit and Jimmy Saville costumes etc.
To put it in context the Nazis murdered 17 million between 1933 and 1945 of which 6 million Jews ,But also people from the LGBT community and people with disabilities.
I wonder do people who wear these outfits ever considered that.
The horrors of the Nazi regime lived on in the minds of many Europeans long after the war, still today for some.
My grandfather was killed by Nazis as were some cousins of my mother.
Aside from that it has nothing to do with Halloween.”

I was then called again and was advised that when I would talk to the presenter, I should pretend I found this on social media.

When the interview started it was implied that I had contacted the show and not the other way around, I can understand why they did that, but it was a bit bizarre.

But have a listen for yourself.

https://www.rte.ie/radio/radio1/clips/22023230/?fbclid=IwAR2Kc8b9HhIVIeHo4t-K4PTOEyVrulJ5yMesLkU8h-8c7cRhODlL3zRjNOw

https://www.rte.ie/radio/radio1/clips/22023230/

Living with Information and Communications Technology (ICT)


ICT or Information and communications technology has become an integral part of our daily lives. Whether it is for work or personal use we can not do without it. Especially in the last 2 years or so, during the Covid 19 pandemic, ICT has become the cornerstone to keep the economy and education going.
However, it has also become something which can be exploited for negative use. Cybercriminals have exploited weak spots in ICT infrastructure of many public and private companies.
For example, on May 14, 2021, the Health Service executive, Ireland, fell victim to ransomware cyber-attack. Ransomware is a malicious software designed to deny access to an ICT system until money is paid. The HSE had to shut down all their computers and fix them one by one.
Additionally with the development of mobile ICT devices like smart phones and tablets, and the creation of social media platforms it has become extremely easy to spread misinformation and conspiracy theories. On the other hand, it has also become much easier for people to work remotely.
For people like me who have family abroad, good reliable broadband connection, is especially important to stay connected to family and friends across the world. This has become evident to me when my youngest son moved to the Netherlands for the Erasmus project of his studies at the University of Limerick. He moved to Tilburg at the end of August, where before it would be too expensive to stay connected daily, nowadays we can chat and see each other every day via the app What’s App, at no extra cost.
Another advantage of Information and communication technology is in relation to the entertainment industry. Musicians no longer need to buy expensive studio time or equipment. With software like Audacity, Audiotool or Adobe audience they can record, edit, and stream it directly to platforms such as Spotify or Deezer. It has also become a lot easier to enjoy a TV show. Applications like Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney + and Apple TV allow viewers to watch shows and other contents on every device that has a screen be it a laptop or desktop computer, tablet, smartphone, or smart TV, shows can be streamed directly to any of these devices, at any time the user wants it.
But the flipside of this is that there is a risk that down the line a price will have to be paid for all this convenience. Just as is the case with convenience food, just because it is easy and often immediately consumable does not equate with being healthy. People nowadays do not have to move out of their houses anymore. They can order food, watch a favourite show, and listen to music by using the same tool. Often a device that fits in a back pocket.
We most also take in consideration the environmental impact of ICT devices, and particularly the mobile, handheld devices and electric cars. They all run on rechargeable batteries called ‘Lithium-ion batteries. Most of these batteries contain minerals and chemicals as components. To name but a few-Lithium cobalt oxide, Graphite, Lithium iron phosphate and Lithium nickel manganese cobalt oxides- aside from the environmental impact of these components, they also sometimes with a human cost, mining these components often happens in third world countries at elevated risk and little pay.
They also have a high energy density; therefore, they need to be charged quite often, sometimes more than once a day, which is a drain on the electricity grid and can result into higher energy prices. Unfortunately, this is seldom heard in debates regarding so called ‘green’ energy.
A major innovation though is 3d printing. It enables things to be printed in a very quick way where it used to take a long time. Especially in the medical industry it has become a major driver to design and create all sorts of artificial limbs and other things.
I mentioned Social Media platforms earlier. In general, most of these are accessed via apps on mobile information and communications technology devices. Although most social media platforms were initially designed as tools to make it easier and more convenient to connect people. These platforms now have become facilitators of hate speech, history distortion, misinformation and are often politicised.

With the inbuilt programs where you can alter images to make you look better than you do, these platforms are in danger of becoming the purveyors of lies rather then connectors of people. Many especially younger people suffer from mental issues cause be unreal expectation and cyber bullying facilitated by some of the social media outlets.
In summary there are advantages and disadvantages to the use of ICT systems. But if they are used in a controlled in a sensible way, by using common sense, and perhaps by waiting a minute or two before giving a kneejerk reaction to what somebody may have sent you, I believe that overall, the advantages outweigh the disadvantages. However there need to be better regulations and enforcement of those regulations of the more damaging aspect of the information and communication technology

ROCKTOBER-Zombie

When the Cranberry Saw Us were formed in 1989, they did not know that the changing of the name and lead singer would have such an impact on the band.

When the lead singer Niall Quinn was replaced by Dolores O’Riordan, and the name was changed to The Cranberries, the path was open to global success for this Limerick band.

Their 1st album “Everybody Else Is Doing It, So Why Can’t We?” with the hit singles ‘Dreams’ and ‘Linger’ did get the attention of many music fans.

But it was with the song “Zombie” taken from their second album “No need to argue” that the band established themselves as a genuine, bonafide rock band.

It is a protest song written by Dolores O’Riordan in memory of the two young victims who were killed in the 1993 Warrington bombings, Johnathan Ball and Tim Parry. Three-year-old Johnathan Ball was killed when two bombs hidden in litter bins detonated on a busy shopping street in March 1993. Tim Parry, aged 12, died five days later.

O’Riordan, who was on tour at the time, found herself deeply affected by the tragedy.

“I remember seeing one of the mothers on television, just devastated,” she told Vox magazine in 1994.

“I felt so sad for her, that she’d carried him for nine months, been through all the morning sickness, the whole thing and some… prick, some airhead who thought he was making a point, did that.” The singer was particularly offended that terrorists claimed to have carried out these acts in the name of Ireland.

“The IRA are not me. I’m not the IRA,” she said. “The Cranberries are not the IRA. My family are not. “When it says in the song, ‘It’s not me, it’s not my family,’ that’s what I’m saying. It’s not Ireland, it’s some idiots living in the past.”

Unfortunately Dolores died on January 15.2018. But she left behind a legacy for generations to come.

The American heavy metal band Bad Wolves recorded a cover of “Zombie” in 2017 while they were working on their debut album Disobey. The band’s singer Tommy Vext slightly altered the lyrics, inserting a reference to drones and replacing

The band also added two extra stanzas to the end of the song which were not present in the original. However, Vext said that “we weren’t sure it if was going to make it onto the record. The song is a masterpiece and a massive hit. Some art is sacred — you become afraid to do a rendition of it”.

On Christmas Eve 2017, Waite, the manager of Bad Wolves sent a text message to Vext that said O’Riordan had offered to “sing on it”. Vext described the situation: “it was a dream come true”,[166] while the others musicians “almost didn’t believe it

Bad Wolves released the cover on 18 January 2018, 3 days after Dolores’s death, without Dolores’s voice as a tribute to her.

sources

https://www.bbc.com/news/entertainment-arts-42702781

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zombie_(The_Cranberries_song)

ROCKTOBER-One

In today’s edition of ROCKTOBER you get two for the price of ‘One'(see what I did there?) Starting of with Metallica’s epic song “One”

Metallica thrashed into the MTV mainstream with this nightmarish tale of a World War I soldier who steps on a landmine and wakes up to find he’s lost his arms, legs, sight, hearing and speech—left only with the torture of being trapped in his own mind.

The lyrics are largely inspired on Dalton Trumbo’s 1939 anti-war novel “Johnny Got His Gun,” and subsequent 1971 movie of the same name.

“One” was written in November 1987 by Metallica’s principal composers James Hetfield and Lars Ulrich. The song was released in 1989 as the third and final single of the album “And justice for all….” For the first 20 seconds of the song there are a series of sound effects with a battle theme, an artillery barrage and helicopter are heard and continues slightly over a clean tone guitar intro by Hetfield before Kirk Hammett comes in over the top with a clean-toned solo.

“One” was the first Metallica song for which a music video was created. The music video, directed by Bill Pope and Michael Salomon, debuted on MTV on January 20, 1989. The video, shot in Long Beach, California, is almost entirely in black and white, and features the band performing the song in a warehouse. It features dialogue and several scenes from the 1971 film adaptation of Johnny Got His Gun. Timothy Bottoms can be seen starring as Joe Bonham.

The second ‘One’ is U2’s classic hit from the album “Achtung Baby” in my opinion the last good album that U2 produced. Ironically it is the album that stopped them from breaking up.

During a Dublin show on December 31, 1989, Bono took a minute to air his band’s dirty laundry. U2 had entered the final stretch of the Lovetown Tour, launched earlier that year to help promote Rattle And Hum, and the guys were beyond exhausted. There were family issues to deal with; Bono’s wife had given birth to the couple’s first child earlier that year, and the Edge’s marriage to his high school sweetheart had started to crumble. There were creative problems, too, which had manifested themselves on Rattle And Hum and spilled over into the current tour.

“This is just the end of something for U2, and that’s why we’re playing these concerts,” Bono told the crowd during an encore performance of “Love Rescue Me.” “It’s no big deal. It’s just … we just have to go away and dream it all up again.”

Looking for some new inspiration, the guys wrapped up their tour, spent several months at home and headed to Berlin in October 1990, flying into town the day Germany officially reunited. The sessions were fraught with conflict, as the band argued over their musical direction and the quality of their material. After tension and slow progress nearly prompted the group to disband, they made a breakthrough with the improvised writing of the song “One”.

“At the instant we were recording it, I got a very strong sense of its power. We were all playing together in the big recording room, a huge, eerie ballroom full of ghosts of the war, and everything fell into place. It was a reassuring moment, when everyone finally went, ‘oh great, this album has started.’ It’s the reason you’re in a band – when the spirit descends upon you and you create something truly affecting. ‘One’ is an incredibly moving piece. It hits straight into the heart.”

—The Edge, on the recording of “One”

Bono recalls that “the melody, the structure, the whole thing was done in 15 minutes”. He also stated that the lyrics “just fell out of the sky, a gift”; the concept was inspired by the band members’ fracturing relationships, the German reunification, and Bono’s scepticism of the hippie idea of “oneness”. Bono later sent a note to the Dalai Lama declining an invitation to a festival called Oneness, incorporating a line from the song: “One—but not the same”. The song’s writing inspired the band and changed their outlook on the recording sessions. Mullen said the song reaffirmed the band’s “blank page approach” to recording and reassured the band that all was not lost.

“Is it getting better
Or do you feel the same?
Will it make it easier on you now?
You got someone to blameYou say one love, one life (One life)
It’s one need in the night
One love (one love), get to share it
Leaves you darling, if you don’t care for it”

“One” was released as a benefit single, with proceeds going towards AIDS research. The song topped the Irish Singles Charts, the Canadian RPM Top Singles chart and the US Billboard Album Rock Tracks and Modern Rock Tracks charts. It also peaked at number three in New Zealand, number four in Australia, number seven on the UK Singles Chart and number ten on the Billboard Hot 100. In promotion of the song, the band filmed several music videos, although they were not pleased until a third was created.

sources

https://www.bigedition.com/s/meanings-stories-pop-songs-lyrics-a727257e0a5a43c2

https://www.loudersound.com/features/the-real-story-behind-one-by-metallica

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/One_(Metallica_song)

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The Charley Project-My interview with Meaghan Good.

The Charley Project profiles over 14,000 “cold case” missing people mainly from the United States. It does not actively investigate cases; it is merely a publicity vehicle for missing people who are often neglected by the press and forgotten all too soon. A person must have been missing for at least one year to be listed; see the FAQ for additional information on the site, its goals, and its founder/administrator. This is my interview with Meaghan Good, founder of the Charley Project.

One of the cases we talk about is of Annie McCarrick, 26, of Long Island, New York. She went missing on 26 March 1993. She was living in Sandymount, Co. Dublin. The last confirmed sighting of her was at a post office in Enniskerry, Co. Wicklow. However, there was an unconfirmed sighting of her outside Johnnie Fox’s Pub in Glencullen, Co. Dublin. This sighting was by a doorman of the pub who said she was with an unknown man. They left the lounge of Johnny Fox’s Pub and entered the cabaret room where the unknown man paid for both of them to enter. McCarrick had invited her friend, Hilary Brady and his girlfriend, Rita Fortune to dinner at her apartment the next day. When McCarrick was not there, they contacted her parents in New York and she was reported missing. McCarrick’s parents, John and Nancy McCarrick arrived in Ireland shortly after their daughter was reported missing, but left after a six-month long unsuccessful search for McCarrick.

source

Donation

I am passionate about my site and I know you all like reading my blogs. I have been doing this at no cost and will continue to do so. All I ask is for a voluntary donation of $2 ,however if you are not in a position to do so I can fully understand, maybe next time then. Thanks To donate click on the credit/debit card icon of the card you will use. If you want to donate more then $2 just add a higher number in the box left from the paypal link. Many thanks

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