This blog is a personal take on Listowel, Co. Kerry. I am writing for anyone anywhere with a Listowel connection but especially for sons and daughters of Listowel who find themselves far from home. Contact me at

Tag: Alfred O’Rahilly

Memorial Day and Writers’ Week

Today is the last Monday in May, Memorial Day in the U.S. Memorial Day pays tribute to all the servicemen who fought in all the conflicts in which the U.S. has taken part. It is usually celebrated with flags at half mast, veterans’ parades and the laying of wreaths.


They did their best. They took their beating, congratulated Sweden and have now moved on. They are praising their fans and planning their world tour on Twitter. Not a word of regret, no looking back. We could all learn from Jedward.


posters spotted in town.

Wednesday is Writers’ Week opening night, a highlight of the year in this literary town.

This is the first committee. As usual not everyone was present for the photo. Mrs Corridan gave me the picture. Someone else might name them all for us.

This is the 2012 committee.  Here I am taking a really lazy option. I have copied the names of the committee from the Writers’ Week website. Not everyone was present on Tuesday night for Ann MacNamee’s photo.



Vice Chairperson

Literary Advisors

Festival Team

Colm Tóibín

Very Rev Dr J Anthony Gaughan,
Michael Barry

Seán Lyons

Lisa Fingleton

Rose Wall, Anne O’Sullivan

David Browne, Madeleine O’Sullivan,
Joanna Keane O’Flynn, Michael Lynch
Sean Lyons

Lawrence Block, Seamus Hosey,
Brendan Kennelly, Colm Tóibín,
Michael Collins

Eilish Wren, Máire Logue

Lisa Dennehy

Margaret Broderick, Bríd Leonard,
Bernie Carmody, Veronica Cotter,
Jackie Goodall, Kieran Gleeson,
Noel Keenan, John McGrath,

Jean Allen-Goggin, Joe Murphy,
Deirdre O’ Brien, Máire O’ Connor,
Anne O’Neill, Marian Relihan,

Cara Trant, Brenda Woulfe,

Norella Moriarty, Maria Doyle,

Gerry McDaniel, Mary Cogan,
Vincent Carmody, Eamon Dillon,

Ann McNamee, Aisling Wren,

Bridget Curtin, Noel Twomey,
Mairead Costelloe, Annette Fitzgerald,
Orla Mulvihill. 


I forgot my roundup of posters on Friday so some of these are a bit late. Others are extremely early.

And finally in poster parade, a Monday laugh from a restaurant in Carlingford.


Tonight I intend going to St. John’s to celebrate the life of one of the greatest Listowel academics, Alfred O’Rahilly.

The extraordinarily talented O’Rahilly family were born in this house in The Square, Listowel. The above plaque commemorates them. Tonight we will have a lecture from John A. Murphy of UCC and a bit of a hooley to celebrate the great man.


Who’d have thought it?  BAFTA for best sit-com.

May day mayday

The location looks familiar but who are these motley crew?

The men are Cornelius O’Sullivan, Kieran Barry, Conor O’Donoghue, Cormac Heffernan, Pat O’Sullivan and Gerald Forde.

 Padraig Nolan took the photo to publicize the May Day high jinx in Listowel. There will be vintage everything on that weekend including a swing dance in The Listowel Arms. Vintage dress is optional.


Calling all graduates of UCC

Dr Michael B. Murphy


University College Cork

is pleased to invite graduates and friends to

A Lecture Evening & Reception

To Celebrate UCC’s Connections with County Kerry

A Great Kerry Academic & Public Man: President Alfred O’Rahilly, UCC

by Professor John A Murphy, Emeritus Professor of History, UCC


Reflections of a UCC Graduate

by Dr Denis Brosnan, Founder Kerry Group Plc

with guest of honour,

Mr Jimmy Deenihan TD,

Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht

from 7.30pm – 9.30pm

on Monday, 28 May 2012

in St John’s Theatre, The Square, Listowel, Co. Kerry

A Reception will follow the Lecture at 8.30pm

Please forward this email to any UCC graduates you know who may be interested in attending.

RSVP by 22 May 2012 (as numbers are limited.

Please include your home address)

To:   Ms Caroline Waters, Development & Alumni Office, UCC


Tel:  021 490 2040

Looks like we could be in for a good night.  

Read more about Alfred O’Rahilly here


My Cork roots are showing  bit lately!! But I have to mention this young lady. I know that people like Joanne shun the label “inspirational”.  Joanne is playing the hand she was dealt, but boy! is she playing those cards well:

“Cork teenager Joanne O’Riordan, who was born with no limbs, will travel to the United Nations in New York today to address the ITU conference.

Joanne, 15, is to give a key note speech to the International Telecommunication Union on how technology has helped her advance her life through both education and the social environment around her.

She is the only person with a disability to be invited to this exclusive conference entitled “Girls in Technology”.

Some of the world’s leading women in technology will also attend the event which Joanne hopes will empower others to realise the importance of technology in their lives.

The Irish Film Board has granted Joanne’s brother Steven O’Riordan and 2000 AD Productions in Galway funding to produce a documentary charting his sister’s extraordinary life story.

The working title “No Limbs No Limits” is to highlight the positive and lasting effect on how people perceive those with disabilities in Ireland and beyond.

Mr O’Riordan’s debut film, “The Forgotten Maggies”, was a documentary charting the human rights issues surrounding the Magdalene Laundries in Ireland.”


Remember these?

Nuns in Tralee in 1952 – location unknown


“If everything you try works, you are not trying hard enough.”

This is a quote from Gordon Moore, founder of Intel. I read it today in an article from Tom McEnery. The article is  here and it is well worth reading as it contains much food for thought.

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