The Heelers Diaries

the fantasy world of ireland's greatest living poet

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Location: Kilcullen (Phone 087 7790766), County Kildare, Ireland

Saturday, June 28, 2008

from our sports desk

Four months ago on Friday 7th March 2008 the Irish Times reported that shares in a British stock exchange quoted company called Johnston Press had reached a nine year low at 169 and a half pence. The price had fallen following what the Irish Times suggested was a "bear raid." A bear raid is when a lot of people sell a lot of your shares all at once. The Irish Times seemed to think that this "bear raid" might have been responsible for the sudden fall in the price of Johnston Press shares. Well, duhhhhh. The Irish Times suggested there were fears that Johnston Press could breach banking covenants if the advertising market slowed sharply. I don't know what banking covenants are but they sound like fun.

Since then Johnston Press has issued new shares into the market. At least one newspaper report has suggested that the new share issue has been a success. A new share issue might reasonably be expected to bring down the overall share price. We should therefore perhaps not read too much into recent more dramatic falls in the price of Johnston Press shares.

Last week the Irish Independent on its financial page wrote favourably of Johnston Press claiming that "speculation is mounting" about a possible takeover of the company. The Irish Independent noted that a Malaysian shareholder now owned twenty percent of Johnston Press. I wonder is he Muslim. Muslims are a peaceloving and gentle people, and make great bosses.

In my opinion there is no speculation either mounting or dismounting, or indeed doing anything else, in relation to Johnston Press. Nobody I know cares whether Johnston Press lives or dies. I would ask you to consider the notion that the phrase "speculation mounts" is often used by journalists who are trying to create some such speculation about a company in order to prod the share price upwards. I do not know what the Irish Independent's motivation was. It does not seem impossible to me that the Irish Independent would give a favourable review of Johnston Press merely to annoy me. But I would be interested to know whether or not Independent Newspapers has any shares in Johnston Press, or indeed any friends in Malaysia.

I was fired from the Leinster Leader, a newspaper owned by the Johnston Press, three weeks before Christmas.

Since then certain employees and ex employees of the Leinster Leader have contacted me to say that things have not gone entirely swimmingly since my departure.

Yesterday, on Friday 27th June 2008, the Daily Express reported that the share price of Johnston Press is now 60 pence.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

angel in the sky over dublin

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

And Now This (by Irina Kuksova)

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

an open letter to tony o'reilly ireland's richest man though not in things of the spirit

Dear Tone.
It has been brought to my attention that an article appearing in one of your rags bears an uncanny resemblance to something I've published here.
The article by something called Ian O'Doherty is carried in your Irish Independent of 24th June 2008.
In it there is a reference to Bob Geldoff that seems to imply Mr Geldoff's charitable work for Ethiopia in 1985 actually facilitated the then Ethiopian government in some of its excesses against its own people.
This suggestion does indeed bear a startling similarity to what I wrote here a few days ago.
Tone old bean.
Is it possible Tone?
Is it possible that one of your skangers in Sector Seven G is lifting ideas from the Heelers Diaries?
Look into this if you would.
My own view on Geldoff's efforts is more nuanced than your skanger's.
I tend to accept the Hebrew principle that if Geldoff saved a single life he saved the world entire.
He's certainly done more than Ian O'Doherty.
Best regards always.
James Healy
PS: Come the revolution etc etc.

Monday, June 23, 2008

trail of sapphires

Dinner with Roman Patrizia in the Cafe Moka near Stephen's Green.
An evening of rare mystique and strange high drama.
"James," sez she, "I want to ask you something."
The lights were low.
Her tone was intimate.
I told her to ask anything she liked, and at this moment I actually meant it.
"I want you," she said, "to help me write a letter to Bono."
Well bold readers.
It was a classic of the genre.
A classic of the genre known as Patriziaism.
Only she could engineer a moment quite like it.
Not even Hoddlebun in her heyday, not even Hoddlebun with all her infernal instruments of big haired feminine manipulation, not even Hoddlebun in her glory I say, ever came up with such an exquisite torture.
So there in the middle of the cafe we drafted Patrizia's fan letter to Bono.
She described for me, in that parody of the English language she uses, the various egregiously excessive compliments she wished to pay the great wet blouse, and I translated them into the English of Shakespeare, Keats and Healy.
That is to say I translated her compliments for Bono into verily the most pure melodic poetic English possible.
No mean trick, considering the subject matter.
All this time my face was a mask.
Only my eyes might have told you all was not well.
For my eyes held a certain poignant sadness.
Each time she enumerated another aspect of Bono's greatness, the sadness in my eyes deepened ever so slightly.
How I wished she felt the same about me.
Towards the end of the evening I took her hand.
"Patrizzers old pal," quoth I, "someday I'm going to put this scene in a film."