We’re a small nation, admittedly.
But what we lack in square kilometres, we make up for in unashamed pride.
We have an awful lot to be proud too – so much so, in fact, that it’s important to remind ourselves of some oft-forgotten moments.
Warning: this post may fill you with an extreme sense of patriotism – proceed with caution.
1. When we won our very first gold medal
Sure, Rio was great. And the O’Donovan brothers, amongst all the other fantastic winners, did us super proud.
But it all began with fellow Cork man Pat O’Callaghan, who paved the way for us as a medal-winning country all the way back in the 1928 Olympic Games in Amsterdam.
Pat paid his own fare to Amsterdam, and went on to win gold in the hammer throw.
It was the first time an Irish tricolour was raised at the podium presentation AND the first time Amhrán na bhFiann was played. Totes emosh.
2. When we elected Mary Robinson as the first female president in 1990
A gentle reminder to the Yanks that we did it first (and better).
While we still have a looooooong way to go when it comes to gender equality, this was a massive moment for Ireland, and showed our potential to be progressive huns.
3. When the fans couldn’t stop singing at Euro 2012
Hope is a sustaining human gift, and as sports fans, we never seem to lose it.
One of the most simultaneously heartwarming and heart wrenching moments of the tournament was watching the fans in Poznan band together for an emotional rendition of The Fields Of Athenry during our game with Spain.
WE’RE NOT CRYING, YOU’RE CRYING.
4. When ‘Once’ won an Oscar for ‘Falling Slowly’
The film may not have had the fairytale ending that we really hoped for, but there was some solace in knowing that this tiny Dublin story went all the way to Hollywood and cleaned up.
5. Live Aid in 1985
It’s impossible to overlook the insane amount of charity work the man has done and although the initial idea may have been Boy George’s, Live Aid was mostly Bob’s doing.
6. When JFK was elected as the first Irish-American president
It wasn’t good enough to have our own president, we had to get in on America’s action too.
7. When Tom Crean made it to the South Pole without ANY TECHNOLOGY
While you’re procrastinating in work taking photos with the dog filter, let us remind you that Kerryman Tom Crean went to the South Pole AND back, with absolutely no technological help.
Not to mention that he also completed a 56 km solo walk across the Ross Ice Shelf to save someone’s life, which led to him receiving the Albert Medal for Lifesaving.
Sound for making us look bad Tom. *closes Tinder and puts down phone*
8. When we produced a Nobel Prize winner
Ernest Walton won the Nobel Prize with John Cockroft in 1951 for their “work on the transmutation of the atomic nuclei by artificially accelerated atomic particles” (known as splitting the atom, wouldn’t you know).
Shine on Ireland, you crazy diamond.