cloudsinvenice: woman resting her head on her hand, thinking (Default)
Oh god, sorry for making two posts in a row, but this episode of Beauty and the Beast (s1ep5, "Masques") is killing me. Seemingly every American series that ran in the 80s had to do A Very Special Episode About The Troubles In Northern Ireland, and they're my kryptonite. The above line was what made me turn to my boyfriend and go, "Give me the laptop back, I need to liveblog this!"

Catherine and her dad are at a Hallowe'en party to honour Briget O'Donnell, an Irish peace activist. Her bodyguard gets anxious about Mr. Chandler's sword and makes some remark about "croppies" which (as tedious exposition explains) might have been current in 1798 but is basically just an excuse for Irish People Being Irish Irishly and George R. R. Martin (for alas, it is he who wrote the episode) to show off his research. There are fears of an assassination attempt by 'Orangemen' (which... you can see what they were going for in terms of using terms associated with different sides in the conflict, but it conjures up really weird imagery of some guy in a sash and bowler hat showing up to murder her, as opposed to some generic UVF or UDA guy).

Anyway, Briget is being played by some Irish American from Wisconsin who does Fakey Floaty Romantic Vaguely Southern Irish Accent (you know the one) despite being from the Bogside ("In Derry," she tells us sadly, "the night has a darker music!") and... oh, it's just going to get worse and worse. But I am gripped. Horribly, horribly gripped. Also, Briget has a thing for Vincent (my boyfriend is now ad-libbing in her atrocious accent: "Sometimes I just want a hairy paw on me fanny!"), so it's not going to end well. I will edit in more awfulness as and when it becomes necessary.

it became necessary )
cloudsinvenice: Tree silhouetted against a twilight sky, with full moon behind it (Twilight tree/moon)
If you're a government body in Northern Ireland,  this question may have a surprising answer.

I had a big, rambly, ranty post about how the Roads Service is destroying a medieval archaeological site of rare extent, preservation and value. About how despite its existence being well documented (mapped since the 19th century! listed! known!), the decision was made to build a road through it to facilitate Fermanagh's hosting of the G8 conference. About how often Northern Ireland's heritage and tourist sectors between them drop the ball at valuing, preserving and promoting the ancient Irish heritage which fascinates the rest of the world. But I'd rather you hear from people with cooler heads, greater eloquence, and expertise in the field of archaeology. To kick off, here's today's news:

"'No-go zone' imposed around Enniskillen crannog" - BBC
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-19053339
Staggeringly, archaeologists haven't just had to fight the Roads Service on this - no, they've had opposition from the Northern Ireland Environment Agency. You know, the umbrella body which contains the heritage service? And you can read about the social media campaign to preserve the site, along with a fantastic evocation of its archaeological value, here:

Saving Northern Ireland's Noble Bog - Archaeology.org
http://www.archaeology.org/issues/81-1303/trenches/531-northern-ireland-bog-crannog

For a revealing perspective on the deeper problems within Northern Irish commercial archaeology, let's hear from Robert M. Chapple, the archaeologist who got fired for alerting the media and public to this nonsense:

Empire of Dirt: time to call time on commercial archaeology in Northern Ireland?
http://rmchapple.blogspot.co.uk/2013/02/empire-of-dirt-time-to-call-time-on.html
He wrote this two weeks ago, and I'd guess his prediction about not being consulted has come true - he certainly wasn't mentioned by name in this morning's Good Morning Ulster coverage of what he rightly calls the crannog fiasco. 

I admire him both for his shedding light on a wretched state of affairs AND the fact that he works in quotes from Conan the Barbarian, Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Die Hard and Watchmen. Clearly, he is of our people.

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I know I owe you guys replies to comments on my last post - I'm on the run at the moment, but just had to get the above off my chest...

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