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What are the icons of Ireland's cities?

Famous city icons...
  • Paris = Eiffel Tower
  • Berlin = Brandenburg Gate
  • London = Big Ben
  • Rome = Collosseum
Icons for Ireland's cities...
For me at any rate, Dublin is not defined by the Spire, the Hapenney Bridge or even (the soon to disappear) Liberty Hall.
Put me anywhere in the world and show me 2 tall red-and-white ringed pillars - the Pigeon House chimneys - and I'll think ... "Dublin".
Not so sure about Cork or Limerick.
Belfast of course = Harland & Wolfe cranes.

George Hook owes us €100! Video of cyclists stopping at a red light. (Well, 2 out of 3 cyclists)

Update Wed 24 Feb: Well George has paid up! Not 100 euro, but 1000 euro! Fair play.
I was invited to chat with George and Damien from on today's Right Hook on News Talk 106.

Just after 6pm on Thursday's "The Right Hook" on News Talk 106FM, George Hook offered to donate €100 to charity if any listener could prove that a cyclist stopped at a red-light during that evening's commute.
This arose from a heated debate about the 30KM speed limit, cyclists & general road safety.
Well George, get your cheque book ready!
The video below shows not just 1 but 2 cyclists stopping at a red-light - in full observance of the law!! (jump to 21 secs and 57 secs)
Unfortunately, it also shows one rogue peddler dicing with adventure and making an early break for it. (jump to 1 min 5 sec)
But surely that doesn't cancel out the other two! So, shall we agree to settle for €66?
And what charity to donate to?
George, we'll let you decide.
(This video was recorded at the corner of Pearse St and Westland Row before 7pm on Thursday 18th February.)

The ugly Irish - 16th most beautiful nation in the world.

More beautiful than the Dutch?!?
Less beautiful than the Welsh?
Wrong on both counts I'd say.
The top 20 (from The Strait Times newspaper)...
  1. US
  2. Brazil
  3. Spain
  4. Australia
  5. Italy
  6. Sweden
  7. England
  8. India
  9. France
  10. Canada
  11. Mexico
  12. Portugal
  13. Wales
  14. Russia
  15. Japan
  16. Ireland
  17. Argentina
  18. Netherlands
  19. Scotland
  20. Germany

Give a toss? Well, here's the sport for you - horseshoe tossing.

I noticed this Horseshoe Tossing place- ground-field-court (?) in Ballsbridge a while back.
Have never seen anyone using, but nice to know it is there.

New VIDEO: Through Wexford town by train - literally!

I visited Wexford town for a few hours recently. I have been here only once before and liked it.
A weird thing is that the train goes right thru the town with almost no separation from the street. Strange.
There is a fair bit of history to be seen - old town walls, abbey ruins and other stuff. Some nice small, windy streets too.
Overall a pretty nice place, though not enough greenery. Too much concrete everywhere, I thought.

New Video: Dublin's most horrible street is...

It occurred to me today just how awful Tara Street is. In terms of pure horribleness, it takes some beating.
It is book-ended by Liberty Hall & a shocking old Social Welfare office, and overlooked by the demonic Apollo House & Hawkins House.
Cars race along its rutted and potholed 4 lanes in a never ending convoy of noise. The gutters are filled with grime, hardened concrete blobs and general detritus.
Redeeming features?
It has an old Fire Station tower near the start of the street, but that's it. An awful place.

[Murmur] - Local stories by local people.

I noticed the signs below on poles around the River Liffey some time ago. They are in the shape of an ear, with a phone number, a series of digits and the word [murmur].
Out of curiosity I rang the phone number at the weekend.
It turns out they provide stories & local history as recalled by residents of the area: Sonny, Jimmy, Bart & Brendan & more. What a great idea!
You can see a full map of the signs and listen to the stories online at
A photo of a murmur sign
A photo of a murmur sign

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