Ireland has been consumed by talk of the referendum for the past few months, and only now is it starting to die down, leading us to ask - what the bejaysus did we talk about before?
Here are 36 suggested conversation topics which should come in handy if you find yourself lost for words when speaking to your taxi driver, weird housemate or mammy this week. Sorted!
1. Justice for Molly Sterling
In all the celebrations over the result of the marriage referendum, it’s important to remember that we also lost another hugely important vote last week. I think this could be what finally drives Ireland from Europe. We’ve put up with their currency, the bailout and austerity, but this is the last straw. Justice for Molly Sterling!
2. What have we gained?
The eyes of the world are on Ireland at the moment. The result of the referendum was viewed as a triumph of decency, optimism and acceptance. Now we just need to figure out how to make money from it.
3. How do you get glitter off your eyebrows?
Asking for a friend.
4. How awkward it would have been had Russia won the Eurovision?
It would have been interesting to see how a country with laws prohibiting “propaganda” promoting “non-traditional sexual relationships” would have hosted an event, that I have heard described by several gay people as ‘a little much’ over the weekend.
5. Why aren’t there fun size Double Deckers?
Seriously? Ireland is a nation all about equality and you can’t get fun size Double Deckers? You already make Double Decker Duos Cadburys! That’s two, almost fun size bars, in one wrapper! Would it really be that hard?
6. The ending of Mad Men
The creator of Mad Men, Matthew Weiner, wrote for The Sopranos, so it shouldn’t be surprising that the series finale of Mad Men was slightly ambiguous. Unless you’re me, then you know exactly what happened.
7. Crocheted shorts
I’ll have to double check but I’m pretty sure these are one of the signs of the apocalypse.
8. What else can RTE find for us to debate about?
I’m sure RTE were delighted with the viewing figures for the debates and will be desperately trying to find something that can draw as many viewers. How about some more debates on some of the most pressing issues in Ireland today? For example: Tayto vs King Crisps, Barry’s vs. Lyon’s Tea, Aldi Vs. Lidl, and so on...
9. Irish Water
Finally something we can all agree on.
I, like many others, was shocked when the government presented the referendum to alter article 41 of the constitution. Who knew there were that many articles? What the hell else is in there? Is the right to tea guaranteed to all? Is it technically treason to enter Britain’s Got Talent? I wouldn’t know. Whenever I read the constitution I skip the articles and go straight to the centrefold: a boudoir picture of Eamonn DeValera.
11. What will Jedward do now they have to wait to be joint president?
I hope you’re proud of yourself.
So far we’ve had six weeks of political turmoil; high drama; marital strife; an endless stream of haughty pronouncements; characters completely unaware of the irony in their statements and actions and religious zealots trying to impose their tyrannical views on the world, particularly, it would seem, on gay people. We’ve also had 7 episodes of Game of Thrones.
13. George Clooney visiting Ireland
We don’t know when or where he is going, but I for one can’t wait to visit the Clooney Plaza that will be built somewhere in Offaly where he stopped to have a pint.
RTE’s need for balance during the referendum has oft been discussed and criticised. They should play it safe and bring that balance to all programming. For example, all positive feedback on Masterchef should be balanced with a scathing critique from someone else. Any money won by contestants on Winning Streak should have their winnings taken from the other contestants’ personal bank accounts. Talk about raising the stakes! In fairness, RTE have already made good headway on this front with The Late Late Show, where every interesting, insightful and engaging interview is accompanied by a tooth-achingly dull one. Judging by the interviews on the current series so far we’re due a few crackers over the next few weeks.
15. How is ‘Brexit' acceptable?
How have we all just accepted ‘Brexit’ as the term for Great Britain leaving the EU? It sounds like the name of a high fibre breakfast bar, that will expedite the removal of waste matter from… Oh. Okay, I get it now.
16. Putting a few new colours on the Irish flag
With the Westboro Baptist church intent on burning every Irish (and Ivory Coast) flag in existence, we may as well design a new one and add a few more colours to reflect our new status as the world leader when it comes to equality.
17. Hannibal season 3 starting next month
It’s the best show on television and hardly anyone watches it. Catch up before season 3 starts next month. Then you can look down on people in years to come saying you watched it before everyone was suddenly raving about it after catching up with it on Netflix. Scientists call this phenomena “The Breaking Bad Effect.” Seriously, watch it.
18. Giving Roscommon a break
Roscommon/South Leitrim voted No by a very slim majority, 51.41%. A few other constituencies voted yes by even narrower margin but have managed to avoid the pariah status of Roscommon. Let’s give them a break. I’m sure in light of the events of the weekend, if they were to run the referendum again in Roscommon, they’d probably still vote No out of spite after the relentless bashing they’ve received over the last few days. Still, let’s give them a break.
19. What to do with all the referendum posters?
Some have suggested making bee hives out of the referendum posters. I’m not so sure, as the conflicting messages on the posters could tear the bee community apart and the bee monarchy could collapse under the weight of a strong anti-surrogacy movement by the drones. My suggestion would be to build a wedding chapel out of the posters. Alternatively, we could use them to build a wall around Roscommon. Damn it Roscommon, you’re making it too easy!
20. Adoption and Surrogacy
Now they’re relevant.
21. The Raptors in Jurassic World
Look I love Jurassic Park and Chris Pratt, so I can’t objectively judge the Jurassic World trailers. I honestly don’t know if Chris Pratt hunting with the Raptors is really, really, cool, or really, really, dumb.
22. Star Wars: The Force Awakens
I think we can all agree though that everything about the Star Wars: The Force Awakens so far has been pretty damn cool. Some of it was even filmed here! We’ve got another few months before we’ll be sick to death of hearing about it so let’s use that time wisely.
23. What will be the internet’s new favourite animal?
We’ve had pandas, sloths, koalas and various other animals act as the internet’s animal meme du jour over the years, and of course the perennial cat, is still the best. What’s next though? What animal will capture the hearts and minds of the internet? I’m guessing the Ili Pika, which, since being rediscovered in China earlier this year, has begun to take the Internet by storm. Wouldya just look at its little face!
24. True Detective season 2
If you loved season 1 of True Detective for the insidious Southern Gothic vibe provided by its Louisiana setting; the creepy occult undertones and the non-linear structure, then I’ve got good news for you. None of that is in the second season! It does have Colin Farrell though…
25. What happened to Nestle’s Secret chocolate bar?
Just because the bar is called Secret, doesn’t mean you have to hide it from existence. If anyone was alive in the 80s and 90s you may remember this glorious achievement in chocolate bar creation. You will also, like me, wake up every morning with a heavy heart, knowing that they no longer exist.
26. Finding David Norris a husband
“It’s a little bit late for me. As I said the other day, I’ve spent so much time pushing the boat out that I forgot to jump on and now it’s out beyond the harbour on the high seas, but it’s very nice to look at.” - David Norris
That quote damn near broke my heart in two. I think it’s time we as a country step up to the plate and find room for Senator Norris on the boat. A boat, that he not only should be on, but of which he should probably be the captain.
27. How do you pronounce Häagen-Dazs?
Please? I’m making an absolute tit of myself every time I go to the cinema.
28. European qualifier vs. Scotland
You’d think that after the slap in the face of the Eurovision and Ireland now being the most progressive country in Europe, that they’d give us a free pass into the finals of EURO 2016, but no, we still have to qualify. The next match is on June 13th against Scotland.
A word that can mean two, opposite things. It can either mean to approve of something or to put a penalty on something. Maybe Russia is just confused?
30. Dermot and Dave on Today FM
Which one is which and when are they getting married?
31. How long until the weather turns shite?
We’ve had too much optimism for our Irish sensibilities over the last few days, so we need to get back to basics. This weather? It won’t last.
32. Which festivals are you going to this year?
Forbidden Fruit and Life Festival kick off the summer festival season this weekend. Which festival will you be too optimistic about this year, forgetting that you primarily spent last year drunk and getting sick in a muddy field?
Over the last few years we’ve noticed more and more people using the word addicting instead of addictive. When did this happen? This isn’t okay, it just sounds wrong. We have two words for the addictive properties of any one thing but sanction can mean two very different things?
34. Don’t Tell the Bride
What happens when, in our new reality, there is an episode with no bride?
Is everyone now legally required to own one? It sure looks like it to me.
I’m sorry I can’t finish this list. My allergies are acting up and I’m useless without my antihistamines!