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Fame, friends, and feeling good.
Bob was at a friend's house for a ham radio contest all weekend.  So I was left to fend for myself.  And... I don't.  I'm so lazy that I eat whatever is around.  And there wasn't much.  So I ate poorly.  I have to stop that.  It hasn't affected my gut yet, but it will if I don't stop it.  And I'm feeling rotten.

Fighting a pressure headache all weekend.  Not a bad one.  Advil knocks it out for 6-8 hours.  There are a couple of tropical waves in the area.

T minus 4 days to the end of Hurricane season. Yay!  There's been exactly one hurricane in the Atlantic this year, and it went nowhere near land.  We haven't even had a tropical depression here.  Yay!  Even the tropical waves only seem inclined to give us five minutes of rain.  Breezes are supposed to kick up today before a wave moves in tonight.  I will be happy when it stops being 90 every day.  =)

I was on Irish radio yesterday afternoon.  Well... my name was.  I was tuned into my Facebook friend Jess de Búrca's radio broadcast on TodayFM yesterday. She mentioned on Facebook that she was going to be broadcasting in Irish from 7-9 pm, so I found the "Listen Live" link on their website and turned it on while I took the dogs outside.  It's a mix music program, so she plays pop from all eras.  I heard her first outro and was shocked that I could understand most of what she said in her very fast DJ voice.  So I posted on her wall, in Irish, "I understood most of what you said!  Yay!"  I was so excited.

Then I took the dogs out.  I have the french doors open and my laptop is just inside, so I could hear the music outside.  Then another song ends and I think I hear Jess say, "Kass."  I wasn't really paying attention and "cas" (same pronunciation) is the Irish word for a curl (of hair) or the verb to turn, so I kinda ignore it for a second.  Until she says, "Kass McGann" and I then tuned in to what she was saying:  "She has been learning Irish lately.  She has the Northern dialect and she's making a great effort.  She lives on the island [sic] of Christiansted, I think.  I'm not sure.  But she's studying Irish so a Big Hello to Kass!"

http://www.todayfm.com/player/listen_back/8/6800/27th_October_2013_-_The_Mix-Up_Part_1  Slide the thingy to around 22:18 and the song will end and Jess will come on.  She outros the song, spells out her name on Twitter, and she gives the "Haló mór a Kass."

I'm still smiling about it.

On Saturday, a thread of mine on Facebook spawned a discussion of the status of the Irish language in Ireland.  All figures and anecdotal evidence points to Irish being on the rise, which of course thrills me.  I haven't been there since 1999 and the Irish language TV station only went on air in 1996, so that's a time period of a lot of changes.  One of my friends just got back from a business trip in Ireland and had some rather annoyingly negative things to say about the state of the Irish language.  Because, you know, he knows everything because his company has a division in Ireland and he goes there on business trips and talks to three guys (I'm exaggerating but he is only going there for business; he goes to tourist bars and tourist restaurants and doesn't spend any time outside hotels).  He contends Irish is a school subject that everyone is just happy to be finished with and only a few old farmers speak the language.  Now, how can this be true when more people than ever are reporting a knowledge of Irish on their census returns, and more are saying they speak only Irish in their homes.  And three NEW Irish-speaking areas have popped up in the last 15 years in areas that don't traditionally speak Irish -- two of those in Northern Ireland!

So blah blah blah.  Annoyance, annoyance.  And then Jess finds the thread and pipes up.  She's an Irish speaker by choice.  And her children are third-generation Irish speakers living in a non-Irish-speaking area.  They go to Gaelscoil (primary and secondary schools that teach in Irish).  So of course Jess posted statistics for the growth of the Gaelscoil (a govt that is cutting all kinds of social programs isn't going to support "special" schools just for fun, so the growth of the number of Gaelscoileanna is a significant indicator of the growth of the language).  And contrary to my friend's contention that speaking Irish wasn't going to help anyone get a job, Jess explained that she would have never worked in radio and broadcast TV if she hadn't been an Irish speaker.  And she works for the biggest non-state radio station in Dublin now, having come up through the ranks.

And THEN, Jess and I threw some Irish back and forth.  She loves the language and is really thrilled that an outsider like me is so passionate about learning it.  And then Paul, an English friend who lives in Ireland, said we all need to get together when I'm over, and the conversation devolved into an argument over who was going to buy the first round.  =)

So... warm fuzzies.

And THEN... I find that when I post to the threads of these Irish friends on Facebook now, they're ending their replies with "x" or "xx" which is, of course, a kiss.  I see them doing this when they speak to each other.  But seeing them do it to me really makes me feel like I've made some new friends, even though we haven't met.  I think for a while there, I was just "this annoying Yank" and now I'm a person that they have some connection with.

And another friend of mine is going to be in Ireland from May until July.  He'll be at the other end of the country, but it's not a big country.  So we should be able to get together even though neither of us will have cars.

Anyway... just feeling kinda warm and fuzzy right now.  =)

Irish lesson at noon.  Got lots to talk about.  I hope the internet behaves.

I've been walking in the mornings.  And I'm going food shopping today so I don't have to eat crap anymore.  And I really have to get back in the water sometime.  It's right out there!  But I'll find any excuse in the world not to budge.  I mean, "It's too hot to swim" is just ludicrous!