Don’t Like Thursdays

For most it is Monday that is the harbinger of an unsolicited dose of the downers. The infamous Monday Morning Blues gained music immortality when the Boomtown Rats with I don’t Like Mondays soared to the top of the UK pop charts in 1979.  Bob Geldof penned the lyrics upon learning of Brenda Ann Spencer’s deadly attack in California after which she simply said ‘I don't like Mondays. This livens up the day.’

But in one of those ‘creative and imaginative’ acts that came to define the Northern peace process Sinn Fein caudillo Gerry Adams has broken the mould. No plain old Monday down in the dumps for him. Thursday is his challenging day. Apparently out of 22 sitting Dail days missed last year by the Louth rep 10 were Thursdays. Even god only worked a six day week, Sunday being his feet up day. So nothing unusual with the Louth TD’s swing low Thursday. All deities have a day they would rather not face. And there is cause to be thankful that Adams these days is a man of peace and wouldn’t dream of spraying schoolteachers, even if they are UDR men, just because it livens up a boring old Thursday.

It is not much of a coincidence then that the Irish Independent should pick today to run the story of Absentee Adams. When the cat’s away the mouse will play. Sensing that Deputy Adams would be having an off-day the Indo went for an on-day and informed its readers that the former Provisional IRA chief’s absenteeism amounted to ‘one of the worst attendance records of all our TDs.’ Missing 17 out of 68 attendance days, ‘his dismal record is the worst among the opposition party leaders.’  Seems he attended Westminster more while he was the abstentionist MP for West Belfast.

Despite the flurry at the Indo, there may be no political significance in the matter. It seems the leader, primus inter pares, merely has his certain days for not doing things. He doesn’t like reading newspapers on Sundays and doesn’t like turning up to the Dail on Thursdays. Simple as. No need for conspiracy theorists.  Maybe he just can’t face Thursdays having read yet another slavish Irish News weekly column praising him as the greatest leader ever, as the man that created West Belfast never mind represented it.  Odd if that is the reason as sycophancy rarely bothered him in the past.

Sinn Fein strangely seems to think there is a political explanation, giving legs to a story that might otherwise have run out of steam. When a simple statement of ‘day at the races’ would ring more credible, it was reported to have defended the poor attendance record of its boss by suggesting he was busy in the North. Thursday is an important day in the North. It was on a Thursday that Mr Adams was not sworn into the IRA there, preferring instead in 1966 to build a peace process. That momentous occasion should be acknowledged in some small way.

Truth is the Independent doesn’t like Sinn Fein and mischievously stresses the fact, for effect, that the Louth TD is not shy when it comes to drawing expenses. As if that has anything to do with attending the Dail or not. Expenses are a well deserved perk and totally autonomous from work performed. They are awarded for just being not for being at.

One TD with an even worse record is Willie O’Dea although he doesn’t get the same barbed attention from the waspish Indo. Unfortunately, Sinn Fein has only itself to blame, not being allowed to blame the leader. Despite years of getting its fingers burned it makes things easy for the Indo which is all too willing to highlight that Deputy Adams has on accasion complained about ‘our absent friends from the Labour Party’ as well as raising the ‘absent’ status of Taoiseach Enda Kenny. Hostages to fortune, hoisted on petards and all that.

If he is not careful Mr Adams will be accusing his fellow TDs of extreme revisionism next and giving both Fine Gael and the Indo a chance to laugh at and ridicule him. But he wouldn't be that deluded would he? 


  1. That Brenda Ann Spencer is some head the ball- even at her 2009
    parole board hearing she tried to
    but the blame onto others for the reason she opened fire on a school-she will have to come up with something new for her 2019 hearing-no big storys-just her story-
    like Red in the Shawshank Redemption had to in his case- would 40 years be enough for such a crime-50 years-forever and a day-
    what if she comes out a model citizen-what if she gets home only to shoot at the same school again-who knows- i don't-

    Bob Geldof wrote a song about that school shooting which made him nearly famous- with that fame he started live aid and all the off-shoots which saved many lives- its a strange world some-times-

  2. Seems like Brenda Ann Spencer and Gerry have a lot in common they both are dangerous and devoted lairs
    Cant wait to hear who Gerry and Sinn Fein will apportion blame for him missing Thursdays , Michael Henry as you rightly pointed out that Brenda blamed everyone else including the MEDIA for the crime she committed, Gerry has often done the same when he has tried to weasel out from admitting the truth.

  3. I bet there is a higher attendance amongst the other TDs on a Thursday knowing Adams has beaked off.
    Money fo old rope, not one ounce of dedication to anyone or anything only himself.

  4. Funny you should say that, Nuala. The original title for the piece was 'Himself Alone.'