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Sgt Mattie.

The Late Late Show


Pat is proud to support
Power 4 Good Ireland
30th April 2011

No rest for the boy at home

There's somethin' about spring and fine weather that turns Mothers into dirt spotters and cleanin' machines

I was enjoyin' a leisurely few days in the week leadin' up to Easter, however, the Mother soon put an end to my idleness. Since the weather improved she has been snortin' and splutterin' about the dirt of the place and when she saw me with time on my hands drew up a list of jobs that included gardenin', paintin', washin windows and the like.

She ordered me to begin at the front of the house but 'twas impossible to get anything done; everyone and anyone going by the gate stopped to give me a slaggin', to offer advice or just to kill time.

The Mother wasn't a happy camper. Whenever she came out to review progress I was either sittin' on the wall talkin' to someone or leanin' in the window of a car with my arse in the air; not a weed was gettin' pulled nor a window washed. She decided there was nothin' for it but to ride shotgun on me so she joined in my efforts and nearly killed me. She was like an overseer in the cotton fields of Mississippi; every time I lifted my head or looked around she'd give a sort of a cough that was as effective as the low growl of a cross dog.

Whenever anyone came along and showed any signs of settlin' down for a chat they got the message to move along fairly lively;

"Hello, Maurice, how're things? You're doin' a bit I see."

Before I could answer the Mother would butt in; "He's fine, he's busy and he hasn't time to talk to you. Goodbye now and a happy Easter." She'd glare at them in a way they knew she meant business and they'd look at me with eyes full of pity; you could almost hear them say; "ya poor auld gobshite, she has you beaten into a fool."

I suppose they're right, maybe I do let her walk all over me, but then on the other hand, if I had to pay a mortgage or pay rent I'd be in bad straits. Indeed if I had to buy my own dinner every day the council allowance wouldn't be enough to keep me in the style I've become accustomed to, I'd be half hungry. Maybe that isn't any bad thing, given the size of me.

Anyway, after two days of weedin', scrapin' and washin' I was itchin' for road; there's only so much potterin' a fella can do especially with a vigilant overseer sittin' on his shoulder. I woke on Thursday mornin' determined to make my escape. Before I got out of the scratcher I texted my FF councillor friend, Peter Treacy and asked him to phone me at about nine o'clock and let on I was needed for an important meetin' at County Hall.

When Peter called at about quarter to nine I was on my way down the stairs. I had a very loud telephone conversation with him, all for the benefit of the Mother.

"Yes Peter, oh yes, oh indeed, indeed that is important. ........of course, Peter, true for you.....we've been waitin' for a meetin' with that fella for months, now...... Good man yourself, I'm delighted... oh there's no point in waitin,' we might as well strike while the iron is hot....., Yes, yes, that'll suit me fine, eleven o clock at County Hall... I'll be there with the help of God and my Mother, haw, haw haw..... good luck Peter, see you later."

I went into the kitchen expectin' I'd have no explainin' to do as the Mother would have heard every word I said to Peter. The kitchen was empty and there was a note on the table that read;

"Gone to Kilkenny for Kit and Beeb, they're coming for Easter. You are to finish cleaning windows, Mick Gleeson is delivering paint for front door at 11. Scrub door and put on one coat of undercoat. The meat is in the cooker, turn on the oven at 170 degrees at 12 o clock. Put the spuds on at 1 o clock. Lay the table and I'll be home for the dinner with the girls at 1.30. No lazing about.

That put an end to my plans. I ate the breakfast, put on my workin clothes and went out the front where I was greeted by a sign that warned the public not to interfere with the workman. Maybe I should do a runner? It's a bit late for that now.