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Tarting up the Taoiseach

In January 2003 readers of this e-zine,, were introduced to two Dublin ladies, Philomena and Matilda, and Philomena's sister, Anastasia. That makes three, but Anastasia has yet to speak. Actually Anastasia is only referred to in the third person, a widow four times over, and presently resting, the term used by unemployed actors and actresses between roles, until she commits her next matrimony.

"Matilda, I'm lost for words."

"That's a first, Philly. The world must be coming to an end!"

"Have ye seen today's Indo, Matilda?"

"Not yet, Philly. Is there something in it that upsets you?"

"Upsets me? Upsets me? Upsets the whole blood country! That I should live to see the day! An eejit, that's what he is. A total eejit! Making a laughing stock of himself like that."

"Like what, Philly? I've never seen ye so upset, not since Jamsey, yer second husband, took a fit in Doran's pub, fell off his stool, and died on the floor. Poor Doran, he had to close the pub early-"

"Will you shut up about Jamsey? This isn't about Jamsey, or Doran. This is about-I never thought I would have to say it-the Taoiseach! Dev himself must be turning in his grave!"

"What's he done now, Philomena?"

"Look for yourself. I haven't the heart to read it again. I'll get us something to steady your nerves, me own too. I haven't been the same woman since I first read it."

"Janey Mac - euro symbol18,000 a year on make-up! Sure I can't believe it myself, Philomena. I'm like you-lost for words. It can't be true. Somebody's making it up."

"Pretty pricey make-up Matilda! And even he's not puttin' it on himself. Ninety-five thousand euro! Ninety-five thousand euro! In only six years!"

"Keep on reading, Matilda."

"It says: "Most of the money-around euro symbol18,000 a year-is spent on retaining the services of make-up artists who would be paid euro symbol170 to euro symbol200 a day….euro symbol16,275 to December 1998…other year's totals were euro symbol17,221.34 in 1999, euro symbol21,435.05 in 2000, euro symbol17,599.98 in 2001, and euro symbol18,438.78 last year."

"Here's another bit: "euro symbol4,347.51 on make-up-in just eight weeks."

"That's this year, 2003."

"I'm flummoxed, teetotally flummoxed. Who does he think he is-Elizabeth Taylor, Tammy Mae whatyemaycall her, the wan with the industrial strength eye shadow-"

"You know, Matilda, what gets me is that here we are paying through the nose for it every time we sup a pint. It's almost enough to make me consider taking the pledge for life, not just for Lent."

"Philly, there's wan consolation."

"What's that, luv?"

"There's no mention of total Brazilians."

"What's a total Brazilian, Matilda? The only brazils I know are nuts."

"Matilda! Pull yerself together. Will ye watch where you're spilling your pint! I'm nearly drownded!"

The rest of the conversation is lost to history.


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