James Joyce Unplugged, by Anthony J Jordan

This review was taken from last Saturday’s Irish Times, Oct 14 and it reviews a book by our own Tony Jordan.James Joyce

This book about James Joyce is an interesting amalgam of excerpts from Joyce’s works, letters by, to or about him, and anecdotes and recollections by acquaintances, as well as a very basic biography. A considerable portion is devoted to Joyce’s relationship with Arthur Griffith, founder of Sinn Féin, for whose newspaper Joyce contributed a number of articles. Naturally, Joyce’s much commented-on relationship with his wife, Nora, is further commented on.

his writing proves that ‘it was a mistake to establish a separate university for the aborigines of the island’

The author, a biographer of a number of Irish figures, has some interesting insights about Joyce as well as some debatable opinions, especially his argument that Joyce was really an Irish republican. He includes this reviewer’s favourite comment about Joyce, from the provost of Trinity College Dublin, that his writing proves that “it was a mistake to establish a separate university for the aborigines of the island”. This entertaining book may well encourage wavering would-be readers to finally tackle Ulysses.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Bloomsday, The Many Voices of James Joyce

The Teacher’s  Club saw a multitude of talent on June 16th, Bloomsday.  Mick and Eithne Shanley, together with a talented crew of singers gave a spellbound audience a virtuoso performance of Joyce’s works from the Dubliners through to Ulysses and Finnegan’s Wake.

The show included readings from Joyce to songs drawn from Joyce’s works and a lively performance by Colm “Stride” O’Brien on piano.  The musicians included Jimmy Kelly,
Pat Good, Aisling Connolly,  Dick Tobin,  Joseph O’Dwyer and of course Mick and Eithne Shanley.

This was truly a great night’s entertainment.  Club na Múinteoirí is to be commended for providing the hall for the evening’s performance.

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Proposed extension to Lansdowne Road Agreement

The Government and public sector unions reached agreement early on the morning of June 8 on a proposed extension to the Lansdowne Road Agreement (LRA).

The proposals in the main, deal with the pay and pension conditions of serving public service workers.

However, the proposals confirm that for the duration of the agreement, retired public service workers will receive pension increases in line with pay increases received by their peers currently in employment.

The proposed Agreement is for a 3 year period Jan 2018 to Dec 2020.  If agreement is reached the question of ‘pension parity’ is confirmed for the duration.

The cohort of public servants who retired in the past 5 years (since 1 March 2012) will be the first to gain. This group retired on a reduced salary scale. As this scale is set to increase during the lifetime of the agreement, those whose pensions are linked to this scale will also see their pensions increase.

Public servants who retired prior to 1 March 2012, the bulk of RTAI members,  have their pensions linked to the pre-paycut scale. As this scale is at present higher than the current teachers’ scale, parity does not immediately arise for this cohort. However, as the teachers’ pay scale increases the pensions of the post 1 March 2012  retirees will become aligned with the pensions of those who retired prior to 1 March 2012.  At that point pension parity becomes an issue for every retiree, irrespective of date of retirement.

Please note that the full detail of the agreement is not yet to hand and further details will be posted over the next number of days.

The RTAI has been campaigning for the preservation of pension parity for many years and views this latest development as very significant and welcome.

At the time of writing, INTO has urged its members to reject the proposals.  However, as Impact and SIPTU are proposing acceptance, it is apparent that the deal will be accepted.

The other aspect worthy of note in the proposals is that full restoration of pension cuts has been kicked down the road to 2020!


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Boost Your Fitness!

Those of us who have survived the blackboard jungle and made it to retirement are now surviving on a reduced pension, thanks to the beneficence of our political masters and the FEMPI creature spawned by the twisted logic that spurns the Apple billions while greedily milking hard pressed pensioners of their hard earned pension through the mechanism of PSPR!

No wonder many of us find it hard to draw breath!  This is why many members, your humble author being one, who have taken to pilates to build stamina.  Our tutor, Claire McGlynn, puts us through our paces rigorously, while at the same time having due regard to our age and in some cases, our general lack of fitness!

A recent article in the Irish Times  says the latest research shows that taking exercise in short bursts could be just what the doctor ordered. It’s known as high-intensity interval training (Hiit) and it is now part of any fitness instructor’s offering. Even those who can’t be bothered to go to a gym or who don’t have the time can benefit.

High-intensity training means really pushing yourself for a short amount of time, resting, then pushing yourself again. What’s shocking is how little time it can take to make a difference to your fitness.

Claire Mc Glynn, a competitive weightlifter and personal trainer at cmgfit.com in Dublin, and trainer to Dublin South RTAI, loves to use Hiit and says it is the best and quickest way to achieve positive results in your physical and mental health. “It’s very simple really – everyone knows that when you put 100 per cent of effort into something, you get the best results and there is no exception when it comes to exercise.”

Claire has been doing pilates with our members now for two years.  “Their progress has been unbelievable. Many started with me two years ago and now they are blitzing sessions of many, many squats, lunges, push-ups, plank holds for up to three minutes and so on. Their mobility, strength, fitness, self-belief and confidence has increased tenfold.”

Claire holds classes in St Judes Parish Centre in Templeogue on Mondays and Thursdays.  Currently both classes are full but vacancies may occur in the future and even if you’re not attending class, you can still work out in the privacy of your own home!


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Would you like to come on one of our guided walks?

Are you new to Dublin South RTAI?  Did you know that we organise two guided walks each month?  One walk is classified as an “easy” walk, shorter in duration and with easy or no inclines.  This walk is suitable for all.  Even I have attended one of these walks and lived to tell the tale!  If you would like to take part in our walks all you need to do is ensure that you are on our mailing list.  You will receive notification of the walk the weekend before.  All walks take place on Wednesday morning.

The second walk each month is classified as more “difficult”.  These walks are longer, 3 or 4 hours and they involve some steep passages.  These walks are for more experienced climbers/walkers and obviously you need to have the proper walking equipment and the necessary fitness and stamina to undertake without suffering a hernia or heart attack!

Here we picture some of our intrepid climbers on a recent hike in September.  I am indebted to Deirdre McGloughlin for the photos and for leading the walk, which was around Vartry reservoir.

Posted in Uncategorized | 7 Comments

A Terrible Beauty is Born

Anthony (Tony) Jordan, a member of Dublin South is a respected and well known author and historian.  Tony delivered the Jacobs Lecture 2016 “Easter Monday” at DIT, Jacob’s Factory.  Here is a link to the podcast of that lecture for your listening entertainment.

I think it is high time we had Tony back to deliver another miscellany so that we can listen to him in the flesh!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Colm “stride” O’Brien

Classically trained and residing in Ireland, Colm specialises in the fields of Ragtime, Stride Piano and Musicals. Since 1990, he has played a series of 20 Solo Concerts in the National Concert Hall Dublin.  He has played extensively on the Concert stage in Canada and the United States, where he recorded his CD “Scott Joplin, Gershwin, Fats Waller & All That”. His playing of Scott Joplin Ragtime, recorded in Dublin, has received a lot of airplay on Irish TV & Radio. He is the only Irishman to be invited to play at the prestigious Scott Joplin Festival in Sedalia Missouri, where he has received 3 invitations in 90, 95 & 96. He was invited back again in June 2006.
In Ireland, he has played at many venues including regular appearances at the Cork and Derry Jazz Festivals. In 2002 he received an AIMS award as Best Musical Director for his show “Jesus Christ Superstar”. He has appeared twice on the Late Late Show with the late Professor Peter O’Brien and performed with Paddy Cole and Ronnie Drew in the National Concert Hall Dublin. His 2 Ragtime Compositions have been copyrighted & recorded in USA.
We were delighted to welcome Colm to perform at our April Miscellany in Club na Múinteoirí, Mountjoy Square.  This is the second time that Colm has presented at one of our miscellanies.  He was rapturously received by a packed house and he held us spellbound with his marvellous renditions of famous ragtime numbers and anecdotes.

Colm will appear in the NCH on Fri 27th May 2016  1-2pm
Colm “Stride” O’Brien (Piano)
Giants of Ragtime & Stride Piano
“Mr Gershwin meets Fats Waller & Scott Joplin”


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Those boots were made for walkin’

Lovely walk in Glendalough yesterday with beautiful sunshine for the first half. Thank you Norah. The heron in Tymon Park was reluctant to let Tim and Norah’s car leave at 10.30 – he had become quite attached to it!

Here are pics of the group on the Miner’s Way and the Spink.

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Cycle Trip

Here are some of our intrepid members on a cycle trip to Dalkey.  If you are a cyclist why don’t you join our cycling trips?  We have two trips per month and we’d love to have more members put on the gear and get with the programme!

Here we have a picture of our gallant group courtesy of Mick Griffin.


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Perfect Day for a Good Wallk

RTA walkers out in force!
A perfect day for a beautiful walk around Lough Bray Upper and Lower which was enjoyed by all 26 of us! Why don’t you join us on our next walk?  We organise two walks each month, on a Wednesday.  One is an “easy” walk, for those of us with aching bones and other maladies!  The other walk is for the “professionals” in our ranks who have the gear, the enthusiasm and the energy to go forth on a 3/4 hour hike, often over difficult or challenging terrain.  Be on the lookout for notice of walks.  Notice usually issues on the weekend before the event.
Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments