Friday, January 04, 2008

The more things change the more you realise they're shit whatever you do to them.

Had the pleasure of visiting the original McDonald's on O'Connell Street the other day, the one beside that restaurant mentioned in Tom Clancy's Patriot Games, the name of which I can never remember. I'm sure most of us have been there at some point. My memories are of a fast food experience that involved staff from inner city Dublin barely able to speak English let alone operate a vat of hot oil. Seats that looked like something out of this place, made of plastic to which no item of clothing could create friction resulting in children sliding under the table. If you were of a more mature disposition and able to wedge yourself into place with your legs firmly planted to the floor you then had to deal with a back rest structured to cause so much discomfort that you had no choice but to flee the place the minute the last morsel of Big Mac had entered your oesophagus.

I don't know if you've been there lately. I was waiting for in the rain for a 747 to meet someone at the airport only to find out that they'd been delayed by an hour. The need for a coffee kicked in with the lure of the golden arches as good as any other. You should see the place. Leather seats and couches the like of which would be at home in the lobby of one of those posh hotels that I'm never allowed into. Funking looking Japanese style stools upstairs alongside low sitting tables. Free wi-fi for those of you brave enough to take out laptops on the Northside or so in love with McD's that you're likely to be in there for the long haul.

It looks great…the only problem, it’s full of scum. Can someone explain the logic in doing up a restaurant, completely overhauling it and spending a whack of money if it’s populated by young lads who think dressing up is wearing your best woolly jumper and newest tracksuit bottoms together, junkies who go in cos the milkshakes are so caked in sugar it helps their high and young ones, who at the age of 20 are bringing their grandkids out for a treat….

I'm hoping this doesn't generate a barrage of comments from SL lamenting some kip of a cinema that's been blitzed in order to facilitate a tanning shop or serve as a vehicle for Idiot to promote the fine upstanding job some unknown knight in shining armour did on the shit hole that was Greene's bookshop.

Yours in hope and back to back posting debut…..



  1. Ah, the Porterhouse in Bray went through a phase of that - making my friends remove all their 'threatening' piercings to raise the tone - you go in there in now and it's just full of skanky lads watching sports in the gloom...

  2. TB - i think that restaurant is Flanagans, well it was in my day. Nothing like a good rant. Personally I think its worth doing the place up for just for the sake of it looking nice (for the occasional visit by someone who cares), whether or not the normal clientèle appreciate it. The scumbags have to go somewhere. Isn't it better that they're off the streets blah blah.

    Congrats on the back to back job.

  3. it's true it's nicely done up...but it's no supermacs now is it?

  4. Tib, you know me so well. That McDonald's used to be The Pillar cinema between 1914 and 1945 til "the man" shut it down. Weirdly? The McDonalds at the other end of the street used to be the Picture House/Sackville/Astor cimena. It was the second one to open in Dublin after James Joyce's Volta in 1909. It is the oldest surviving former cinema building in Dublin. Chow on that with your Filet O' Fish.

  5. OL - where do you get your old cinema knowledge from.