Barry’s Rants: The Gym

Well, horse? How are we getting on now? You off training? The bag on your shoulder! You always have it with you. The gym? Ah jaysus, you’re not one of those lads, are ya? I had high hopes for you, Dalton boi. Just another young sheep is all you are!

I wonder would you be able to go out and do a bit of honest work with all your veins and your muscles, ha?! All for show, I’d say anyways. Bicep curls and ye lifting little plastic yokes. I don’t know what ye think ye’re doing but it’s not exercise. Ye’re getting bigger alrite, I won’t begrudge ye that! But at what cost? Doing a crabwalk down the aisle of the train when you’re getting on and off? Cramming yourself into the cubicle when you need a piss? Where do ye draw the line? One look at a bale of straw or a pallet of bricks and ye’d be gone home to flex in the mirror!
No, I worked in the office all my life, why? What’s so funny about that you langer?

My oldest grand son is one of those personal trainers, yknow? Telling young ones and Junior B all-stars what way to bend down in the morning! Getting them to throw heavy balls off the floor and off the wall! He asked me the other morning if he could use my garage for work and I didn’t know he was at this shite so I let him at it. I came back after a few pints that night to hooks and chains all over the walls and the floor; big black ropes on the floor; mirrors at all angles! My own grandson! A sex-pest?? Where did his parents go wrong?? Is that what you’re into, ha?? Thank feck my bus is nearly here because my skin is crawling thinking about ye just staring at each other and grunting. Pack of weirdos, the lot of ye.

Look, all im saying is ye can lift all the weights in the world and I’d still bate ye in an arm wrestle down the Country Squire. I’ll be set up in the back room this Saturday night. Entry is the print of a Murphy’s. Bring it to me, wait for me to finish it and a packet of scampi, and then I’ll flip ye’re arms over faster than a feckin mattress.

Best of luck you gowl!

Barry’s Rants: Coffee, Pt. 2.

This week Barry declines my invitation for a coffee and goes on another expletive-filled rant. Starbucks, the mighty coffee giant, falls under his scrutinous gaze.

Jaysus, sure what are ye after now? Coffee? Where? Not a hope in hell am I going back to that Starbucks place. After the furore the last day and my girls giving me stink over that bleedin’ French press I said I’d go and have a look when I was in Blackpool. By the way, the only time I want to hear the words ‘French-press’ in my presence again are when the rugby is on. And even then, rugby is not allowed in my presence. Especially at God-awful o’clock in the mornin’! Good Irish games like football, hurling and soccer only. Maybe the tennis.
Anyways, I was down in Blackpool, looking at the shops and I said I’d walk over to the cinema. I saw a load of the boys from Sunbeam back in the day sitting outside Starbucks. Jimmy, Carl, Paudie and a few others. I went over and asked them what were they at. Should they not be walking around aimlessly or sitting next to Jack Lynch or Ronald McDonald over in the shopping centre like the rest of us auld lads?
“Ah sure, Starbucks does a great latte, Barry”, piped up Paudie.
“Do they do coffee?”, I asked him. The laugh the boys got out of that. I hadn’t a notion what they were chuckling about but I laughed along as if I made a joke. I was always the joker of the group inside in the factory.
“Ah, you’re gas, Ray. I’d say you’d be a mocha man, would you?”
I nearly lifted him off the chair with a slap before I stopped myself. I’m a tea man, and if anyone says any different I’ll run him up and down Shandon street until even the four faced liar asks me to stop.

Anyways, in I went. I’ll admit to you now, I was half nervous, and not just because of the coffee. The lads behind the counter were smiling away mad. “How are you, sir?”, and “Lovely day isn’t it, sir”, and I barely in the door. They all had hair that was too long for them. One fella had a long ponytail down to his arse. I tell ya now if I found a long, shitty strand of hair in my coffee I’d have torn the place asunder. The other fella had hair down to his shoulders, blond tips and all. They were too happy for my liking anyways. Nobody should be that happy in work. It’s grand having a laugh with the lads but by God you shouldn’t be smiling and laughing the whole time. You should be at the very least, a little miserable.

So I went up to the counter, right, and I said to myself, ‘feck it’, I’ll chance this mocha. If that leaves this conversation you are fecked, by the way. I said I’d chance the mocha, just to sound like I knew what I was at. “One mocha, please,” says I.
“Would you like to try the blond, sir?”
Well, I nearly hit the roof! “I don’t know who’s been spreading lies about me but I’ve been a brunette man all me life.”
You should’ve seen the two lads faces. Almost puce! I looked outside and there were all the lads pointing and laughing at me. I felt like going outside and throwin’ the three of ‘em into traffic. I turned around and the two lads were crouched over trying to hide themselves and their giggles. Eventually, after paying five feckin’ euro, I got my, “mocha”. Hot chocolate in a feckin cardboard cup! I saw your man going to put whipped cream on top and he nearly turned to stone with the look I gave him. Medusa wouldn’t be too distantly related to us as far as I know, so one of the uncles in Michael’s tells me.

I’d say I made it to Woodies before ditching that rancid muck. Never again. I’ll go to O’Briens for a tea and a club sandwich and that’s about as exotic as I’ll be going again! 

Barry’s rants: Coffee, pt. 1.

I bumped into an auld fella at the bus stop last week. Short, half hunched over, half a major burning away in his hand. He was wearing an old, patchwork jacket and a flat cap. He saw my Cork City jersey and we started chatting. Now, I didn’t let on to him I know sweet feck all about the team bar a few of the players and the fact that the season has been poor. The conversation really got going as soon as he asked what I was drinking. The answer, ‘A mocha with whipped cream’, sent him into a frenzy.
All I know about him is that his name is Barry, and he is, “Cork city born, bred and raised, boi.”

Yerra, it was far from mochas and cappucinos and lattes I was raised! Back in my day if you asked me for a cup of coffee I wouldn’t know what you were talking about! All we had was tea and boiling water. Now, there’s all sorts of coffee and different types and blends and what have you. There’s even coffee cake! Coffee feckin’ cake?! When will it end? If you got a glass of water for your birthday and you got let off without a belt to the back of the legs you’d be happy. And my daughter the other day asking me to go halves on a French-press coffee maker for the young one. I will in me French-press go halves! Off to Dunnes and buy some Maxwell House. Maxwell will sort ye out or I will. “How much is it anyways?”, I asked. 20 euros! “Away! Out of my sight”, I said to her. If I ever spend more than 3 euro on coffee I’ll have broken a bond to the coffee from Maxwell’s house. When her Mother, God rest her, sent me to the coal quay for a slab of instant coffee I nearly had her brought to St. Michael’s to be checked in! Coffee, I kept saying, is a ploy by the British to get back in and start another famine. We’ll become so dependent on the stuff that one day, there’ll be a coffee bean blight and you, my daughter, her young one and the rest of the hipsters in their beanies will perish. Ye’ll be talked about in history books. Away now, and don’t be bothering me.

Now, I am partial to the odd Americano. I couldn’t tell you the difference between an Americano and a mocha, except for the feckin’ price. 5 euro for hot chocolate with whipped cream inside in that Costa coffee?? Costa feckin’ lot of money, so it does. I might have to branch into town and see what they have on offer. My grandson is always on about Gloria’s Jeans. I think there’s a coffee place next to her clothes shop. Or else he’s staring at women named Gloria without a morsel of remorse, the little prick. Anyways, thanks for the chat. What was your own name? Dalton? You’re not from Cork anyways, boy. I’ll chat to you again, best of luck!