Thursday, January 03, 2008

The first principle of a free society... an untrammeled flow of words in an open forum. (Adlai E. Stevenson 1900-1965)

Hello my cyber friends, hope ye all got over the Xmas and New Year and are all showered, shaved and locked in for the roller coaster that 2008 might present itself to be.

I'm just back from 4 nights in Prague, possibly the greatest city in the world to spend New Year's Eve.

Did you know it's not actually called New Year's Eve in the Czech Republic but Silvester - you didn't? Well neither did I until I checked to see if the correct grammatical phrasing - New Years Eve à la The Kilkenny Advertiser or New Year's Eve like those fine upstanding people in RTÉ. I find that these are the things that concern me lately. Is that a sign that I'm...

(a) Getting increasingly old and boring or

(b) Unsure about correct use of the English language.

I'm even thinking of buying The Guardian's Style Guide, not for any professional reason more out of intrigue having heard the editor on Media Talk a couple of weeks back.

Anyway, Prague - great spot, relatively cheap (but then again everywhere is when you're born and bred in Dublin), top class night on the 31st, arrived in the main square at 10.20pm, left at about 12.20am and for the love of Marty Whelan’s moustache it was like Kabul. One aul lad said he hadn’t seen explosions like it since the Russians were in town. It’s great to be in a city where there’s something to actually do, public transport that runs until a time when people are looking to go home, plenty of taxis prowling the streets for business, no Temple Baresque pools of vomit, no drunken louts looking for trouble or bars charging €20 in when you can walk in for free for the other 362 nights of the year.

Prague it must be said is also the home of the political paradox of political paradoxes.

I've always quite admired the Commies but surely advertising their museum as being above McDonalds is like going up to your local neighbourhood proletarian and whispering in his ear details of the 16 room mansion that Marx and Engels were couped up in off the royalties they made flogging The Communist Manifesto. If that's not bad enough the whores screw ya royally making you enter and exit through the poxy shop. Take your pick €25 for a Commie t-shirt, €15 for a authentic badge issued to a Russian soldier or a mere €10 for a set of postcards.

I'm sure if I got to the bottom of it there's a cute Kerry whore on the management committee....


  1. Tib - what??

    I love Prague. I have yet to visit the antique dildo museum, but hope to some day. And I'd love to spot Glen Hansard and his younger-girlfriend wandering about holding hands.

  2. What what Jo??

    I never knew there was a dildo museum in Prague....actually I never knew there was one anywhere

  3. Ok, I mustered my muster and read it again and it sank in a little more this time. There's a lot in there!

    What struck me about Prague v Dublin is that the Praguers have genuine civic pride - no vomit in the streets, or litter etc. It's clean and nice. And the Municipal House is the most beautiful place I've been outside of nature. It's a showcase of Slav talent.

    We went home feeling so negative about Dublin though.

  4. I'm not on best of terms with Prague, as last time I was there it was by accident - I got on the wrong train in Dresden and ended up in Prague - as you do - and didn't want to be there and the people were a bit rude. Despite the tragedy of Totalitarianism on Central Europe I'm so over their inability to communicate or even be polite publicly. It's been 2 generations, it's time they got over the whole paranoia and started being respectable to tourists. I don't know what's worse. The ponsy arrogance of the French or the steely robotic rudeness of the post-communists. Neither is likely to get my customs anytime soon.

    Anyway, one thing I did get to do was walk the length of Charles's bridge in my bare feet, it was great.

    They have Sylvester in Germany too. It's just the feast of St. Sylvester, much as our St. Stephen's day.

  5. Yes, I agree, they're comically dour. Still, it's not that long since they've had much to be cheerful about, maybe it'll lift?

  6. Feck. Why hasn't anyone gotten back to the subject of the dildo museum?!? Did you just make that up Jo?

    LOVE Communism. Not necessarily the belief system or the mass killings but definitely the cool gear. Tib has me promised a notepad he got there. Be-you-tee-ful.

  7. I've spent a New Years Eve in Prague and it was SUPER!!!

    The only Prague language I remember was the word for Smarties was Lentilski (probably not a transalation as much as a Marathon/ Snickers thing though?)