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The Tale of the Tilting Spire

You all know about the story about the Seven Virgins of Ringsend.. Now comes the tale of Dublin's Tilting Spire.

It seems that the as yet unofficially opened 310-metre high spire which occupies the site of depillared Nelson in O'Connell Street is stirring up a gale of controversy. Incidentally, if you officially open a spire, does one officially close it immediately afterwards?

What began as an innocuous comment that the spire seemed to be swaying in the wind brought into question its spiral perpendicularity. Official response was that the spire was purposely designed to sway three metres at its top in heavy winds, giving an entirely scientific meaning to the expression "three sheets in the wind".

Some swear it is permanently tilted. Others swear it is not. One inhabitant claims it is the clouds in the sky that give it an impression of bending with every breeze. If they would only stay still everything would be hunky dory, like "a painted ship upon a painted ocean".

Some may laugh and scoff, but this is no laughing matter. If the hot air emanating from Kildare Street meets the cold wind blowing up the Liffey, the ensuing turbulence could create a jet stream flowing up O'Connell Street that no man-made spire could withstand. Is Met Éireann equipped to monitor such wind force in time to warn shoppers to stay away from O'Connell Street, Henry Street, and Talbot Street in case of spiral upset?

Would shops and restaurants and ice cream parlours have time to shutter their windows and flee, like Florida residents in times of hurricanes?

The best-kept secret in Ireland is shortly going to be discovered that, like the Edgar Allan Poe story "The Purloined Letter", the Spire is actually a missile of mass redemption programmed to "take out" Ian Paisley and liberate the Six Counties, whether the United Nations Organization gives its blessing or not.


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