12th July 1690 - It was old but it was beautiful.....

The Belfast feile. West Belfast culture at its finest. Frankie Boyle, the Wolfe Tones. Bucky. WKD and a host of new babies around next April.
Why would anyone miss a couple of wet nights like that.
Ah fuckem, they all deserve each other. Ps you owe me a new iPhone as I laughted and spat my tea all over the mobile and the mother in law.
 

Mr_Fingerz

LE
Book Reviewer
Ah fuckem, they all deserve each other. Ps you owe me a new iPhone as I laughted and spat my tea all over the mobile and the mother in law.
We only have your word for that.


It's a scam to get a new smart-phone isn't it?
 

skid2

LE
Book Reviewer
Ah fuckem, they all deserve each other. Ps you owe me a new iPhone as I laughted and spat my tea all over the mobile and the mother in law.
Ok as I don't live anywhere close to you PM your bank and card details and I'll forward it to you. My ex M in L I wouldn't wish on Danny Morrison.
 
The Belfast feile. West Belfast culture at its finest. Frankie Boyle, the Wolfe Tones. Bucky. WKD and a host of new babies around next April.
Why would anyone miss a couple of wet nights like that.

Because I have the 11th night

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Again I agree with and your durkiem and webber analogy, the respective paramilitarys groups developed a symbotic relationship where the existence of one justifyed the existence of the other, both trying to provoke the other into an atrocitie which in turn allows them to be seen as thier communitys protector, there is even speculation that at times loyalist and republicans worked together, allegedly this happened to John mcmicheal, apparently a section with the uda wanted rid of him and arranged is killing with the ira, so books have even gone as far as to allege that uda members escorted the ira in and out of the loyalist area. So yer a very murky world.
I should say that I am not adverse to the genuine irish culture or the irish, I have been in the Republic many times, in fact I will be doing a residential very soon with a group of army kids and a group of kids from finglas, one of thier leaders is a irish army officer. I agree that the Irish culture is part of my over all culture, but I also believe that we the northern irish people should be forgeing our own culture, we have been a separate entity from the rest of Ireland for nearly 100 yrs, ( culturally you could say even longer).
Its the west Belfast felia in the next couple of days, that's the sort of 'irish' culture im going to give a miss

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Its the west Belfast felia in the next couple of days, that's the sort of 'irish' culture im going to give a miss

You and most of Norn Iron it seems! I was at a wedding this past weekend and most of the carpark was taken up with cars with ‘Norn’ plates.

I don’t know what hour I fell into the bed at and of course I didn’t take off the make-up so I woke up staring at the Shroud of Turin! Despite gallons of tea and fistfuls of Neurofen, I was as shook as a hand at Mass for the day after!

I also believe that we the northern irish people should be forgeing our own culture”

That’s a valid point and have you considered what would constitute ‘Northern Irish culture’?

I think we both agree that the ‘Irish identity’ peddled by some in NI is not truly representative of those who identify themselves as Irish. However there is the converse of that i.e. the ‘British identity’ portrayed through ‘flegs’, parades, painted kerbstones etc. These are the extremes of the identities offered in NI where in reality most people, I’m guessing, are somewhere in the middle.

I am very uncomfortable with certain aspects of what is claimed to be ‘British culture’ in NI. My first impression when I see the sashes, banners, marching bands, gable ends etc is that it is a culture that is exclusive, sexist, patriarchal, sectarian coupled with an aggressive militarism. It is distinctly unappealing and to be honest, I think it is regressive too. I consider all these trappings to be incompatible with a progressive society.

Organisations such as the Orange Order and the Apprentice Boys are considered significant indicators of ‘British’ or ‘non-Irish’ cultural identity (ironically the Encyclopaedia Britannica describes the Orange Order as an “Irish Protestant and political society). However these are organisations that possess an inherent tolerance for discrimination. I’m not referring to the religious requirement for membership but gender. I have no issue with the religious aspect of these organisations where Christianity is promoted as a positive moral code. Yet they actively discriminate within their own religious community on the grounds of gender, considering half of them as ‘less than’; unequal and unworthy of full membership solely because they possess a pair of ovaries.

These two organisations have significant cultural, political and social influence in NI. Therefore should they have a place in defining a Northern Irish culture even though they consider half of its tax-paying adult citizens unworthy of full and equal membership?

You are correct in asserting that there is a unique Northern Irish culture, created by patterns of settlement, migration and conflict, which is distinct from that of the rest of the island of Ireland. For it to flourish and become a comfortable shared identity for the population of NI it must, in my opinion, have certain features.

Firstly, it must be secular society and divorced from religious affiliation. What church/chapel/mosque/synagogue you go to shouldn’t be the primary defining aspect of your identity. It should include the right of same-sex marriage and the same abortion legislation as the rest of the UK if that is wanted by the population through referenda. Good governance and democracy must be free from religious interference.

Secondly, equality or parity of esteem shouldn’t consist of tokenist gestures in areas such as recruitment and housing. There must be a sense of collective ownership of civil society to create an environment that facilitates economic, social and personal development. Each citizen should have the freedom to express who they are without discomfort and that right should be mutually supported for everyone’s benefit. However if that expression means being derogatory or disrespectful towards others then they forfeit that right.

Thirdly, local government administration must become interventionist and assert itself to enforce its right and responsibilities to do its work. It should not appease sectarianism but instead be an effective alternative to break the malign influence of the ‘community activists’.

Fourthly, to find shared aspects of history to promote. Examples could include the Society of the United Irishmen (sexist again!) founded in Belfast to promote the ideals of a non-sectarian democracy. There is also the shared history associated with Scotland through language, emigration and settlement. The history of the First and Second World Wars should encourage the remembrance of the sacrifice made by all in NI.

I have no issue with the remembrance or commemoration of historical events as long as they done so with accuracy and true to the original event. For example next year’s (busy year!) commemoration of the Battle of the Somme should acknowledge ALL twenty three Irish Infantry battalions that went over the top on the 1st July 1916. Also William of Orange, I’ve read a fair bit about him and find him a fascinating character, quite progressive for his day and even a proto-feminist! I have no problem with him being painted on a gable end of a house as long as he is accurately represented. He wasn’t on a white horse galloping across the Boyne; he probably wasn’t on a horse at all. It is noted many times how bad a rider he was and probably due to the shift in his centre of gravity. He was a short man but developed a hunched appearance attributed to his chronic asthma. It would have been very difficult for him to balance in the saddle, permanently tipped forward fighting for breath.

Lastly and most important of all is education. There must be something wrong where over half of boys from a working class Protestant background leave school with no qualifications. That is scandalous and a very poor reflection of Northern Irish society. Education should be promoted at every opportunity as a means of creating a better society for all e.g. one evening a week as part of band practice or football training. Education is key to economic independence not just for the individual but for the society of NI as a whole.

Of course this is all wishful thinking and requires a significant amounts political will and financial input to make it a reality. I’ll be honest I cannot see either of these manifesting themselves in the near future. There are too many in NI whose power is derived from the continuation of the current stagnation. They benefit from the economic and social deprivation of their respective communities and trap them there despite claiming that they act in their best interests. I don’t think Westminster really cares at all as long as the place is reasonably quiet and isn’t costing too much money.

Change will have to come from the people of NI themselves and to borrow an analogy from the Battle of the Somme, they will have to climb out of their respective secure trenches of long-held prejudices and assumptions to meet somewhere in the middle of No Man’s Land to create a culture they all feel they can belong to.
 
Come join me on the 12th day and Ill show you what its really about, to me its about family, its about celebration of identity, this year we had the gazebo up and the bbq cooking, my son banging away on his new Lambeg drum that I had made for him. Its ironic that you talk about the need to build a shared society ( a sentiment I agree with by the way) and yet the one community that doesn't feel part of ( or welcome in) is my community, why? Because the general few and the one that is continually promoted by our detractors, is the very one you listed. Is it our fault? Yes we have accept some of the blame for not behaving ourselves, but also like any war, propaganda is a useful tool, republicans are certainly very, very good at it. On the subject of parades, this weekend coming, could be very interesting.
(By the way, you do know that the Orange lodges does have woman's lodges, they govern themselves and are independent from the male lodges, as for the apprentice boys, well the clue is in the name).

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Come join me on the 12th day and Ill show you what its really about, to me its about family, its about celebration of identity, this year we had the gazebo up and the bbq cooking, my son banging away on his new Lambeg drum that I had made for him. Its ironic that you talk about the need to build a shared society ( a sentiment I agree with by the way) and yet the one community that doesn't feel part of ( or welcome in) is my community, why? Because the general few and the one that is continually promoted by our detractors, is the very one you listed. Is it our fault? Yes we have accept some of the blame for not behaving ourselves, but also like any war, propaganda is a useful tool, republicans are certainly very, very good at it. On the subject of parades, this weekend coming, could be very interesting.
(By the way, you do know that the Orange lodges does have woman's lodges, they govern themselves and are independent from the male lodges, as for the apprentice boys, well the clue is in the name).

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Well, as long as you are doing all of that, mate, you're nowhere near as British as the rest of us on the mainland who simply don't.

Those of us who don't insist on the wearing of Jihabs, that is . . . . :wink:
 
Well, as long as you are doing all of that, mate, you're nowhere near as British as the rest of us on the mainland who simply don't.

Those of us who don't insist on the wearing of Jihabs, that is . . . . :wink:
Are you sure about that?

http://www.liverpoolloyaliststandard.co.uk/loyal-orders/loyal-orange-lodge-l-o-l/

http://www.orangeorderscotland.com/

http://www.orangeordersouthernengland.org/london_district.htm

http://www.oxfordloyalorders.com/lodge_history new.htm

http://www.lol842bristol.com/index.php?p=1_32_Orange-Order-in-England
 
Come join me on the 12th day and Ill show you what its really about, to me its about family, its about celebration of identity, this year we had the gazebo up and the bbq cooking, my son banging away on his new Lambeg drum that I had made for him. Its ironic that you talk about the need to build a shared society ( a sentiment I agree with by the way) and yet the one community that doesn't feel part of ( or welcome in) is my community, why? Because the general few and the one that is continually promoted by our detractors, is the very one you listed. Is it our fault? Yes we have accept some of the blame for not behaving ourselves, but also like any war, propaganda is a useful tool, republicans are certainly very, very good at it. On the subject of parades, this weekend coming, could be very interesting.
(By the way, you do know that the Orange lodges does have woman's lodges, they govern themselves and are independent from the male lodges, as for the apprentice boys, well the clue is in the name).

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Junder,

I assume the gazebo was deployed to keep the rain off the bbq!?

And as for your young lad banging away on a Lambeg drum? Sorry now, my patience for that would evaporate after ten minutes; I like to be able to sip my pink fizzy plonk on the patio in peace.

I am aware that women have their own Orange Lodges but that is segregation on the grounds of gender. In relation to the Apprentice Boys, since there is no requirement to be an ‘apprentice to a trade’ to be a member, therefore how valid is the requirement to be male for membership?

Returning to the issue at hand i.e. forging a distinct Northern Ireland culture, I have two questions for you:

1. What cultural aspects (e.g. sport, music, literature, language, arts etc) do you think could be combined together to create a culture for Northern Ireland that can be shared by all citizens?

2. Do you think that two organisations that openly advocate discrimination and segregation on the basis of gender have a place in forging a culture for Northern Ireland that all citizens can identify with?
 

skid2

LE
Book Reviewer
Come join me on the 12th day and Ill show you what its really about, to me its about family, its about celebration of identity, this year we had the gazebo up and the bbq cooking, my son banging away on his new Lambeg drum that I had made for him. Its ironic that you talk about the need to build a shared society ( a sentiment I agree with by the way) and yet the one community that doesn't feel part of ( or welcome in) is my community, why? Because the general few and the one that is continually promoted by our detractors, is the very one you listed. Is it our fault? Yes we have accept some of the blame for not behaving ourselves, but also like any war, propaganda is a useful tool, republicans are certainly very, very good at it. On the subject of parades, this weekend coming, could be very interesting.
(By the way, you do know that the Orange lodges does have woman's lodges, they govern themselves and are independent from the male lodges, as for the apprentice boys, well the clue is in the name).

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I actually got home one 12th, piled out of the motor and from across the road in a multiflggad house came the sound of a cheap ghetto blaster on full volume. Something about some three letter organisation being the best.
'Aw fuckit' and I was just about to wave Ms Skid2 back into the car when my neighbour, a flag flying loyalist walked over and offered me a beer. I pointed a thumb at the racket from across the road. They too had the bbq and the gazebo.

'Don't worry about them' he told me 'in another half hour they'll be knocking the ballocks out of one another and then sleeping it off'
He was right.
Nothing to do with culture

This w/e I'll put this forward as a bit of crystal ball gazing.
It'll rain, the anti internment crowd will run it late to maximise inconvenience in the town centre. The town centre will be empty. Thus winding up the rabid protestors. The marchers will be models of decorum passing cameras and press. The protestors will come across as moon howlers and what should have passed un noticed and unremarked upon will be a three day DUP gurnfest. With pictures of wet Loyalists throwing stuff at the cops.

We will be abandoning our traditional route and having a pint at the other end of the city centre

Forgot to add the word Fuckem..
 
You see your asking an unquantifiable question, Northern Ireland already has its own culture simply because it exists, since 1921 we have existed apart from the rest of Ireland and for good or bad has been shaped by the particular set of circumstances that are often referred to as the troubles. Strip away the politics and we are already sharing a common culture, out black, gallows, sence of humour is a good example. We have snow petrol, van morrisan, James Galway ( who learnt his trade in a unionist flute band), still little fingers, therapy all hail from Northern Ireland, the last two examples producing many songs inspired by living in northern Ireland. There is no need to create any culture, it already exists, we have a common language, common music ( even in the flute band side of things, go along to a republican parade, you will still here the same tunes played, all be it with different words), we share football, also share ice hockey, but the thing is we don't need to share everything, we are allowed certain cultural practices unique to our own traditions, we just need to be able to respect the others, I dont believe that stripping northern Ireland of all symbols, Practices that may be deemed offensive because where do you draw the line, sorry I find your nose ring offensive, ban it, or your sexuality is offensive, ban it, ( yer that brings back to gay marriage) how can it be an inclusive society when you give people the power to ban things just because THEY find offensive, yes I know it already happens, my point is, thats exactly the mistake we keep making. Yer the apprentice boys are male only, why is that wrong exactly? As long as they are not doing anything illegal, whats wrong with them having a wee private club? Men do actually like the company of other men or is that no longer allowed, should we legislate that all groups of men must include women in what ever activity they are doing, going to the pub with your mates, make sure you bring some women along, oh and some gay people, some people from ethnic minorities etc etc, yes im being flippant, but sorry I find the idea that people cant have a male only fraternity, plenty of women only ones, lots of European money spent on building purpose built women centers over here, nearly every community has one. As for discrimination, well there are no women in the abod to discriminate against. Already pointed out that the Orange Order has womens lodges, those lodges have the same voting rights in the grand lodge as the mens lodge

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skid2

LE
Book Reviewer
Two months a year. I don't see the culture bit at all.
I see tensions raised, drunks, bandsmen dressed like Ruritanian milkmen. ( and this year a rhythm section keeping worse time than a republican fluteband).
I see old men and kids. I see a generation of bitter old men who think that culture is annoying the Catholics ( judicious editing) pissing wherever they like and breathing alcohol over everyone. Piles of rubbish stacked up against empty commercial wheely bins.
And the classic this year in front of the cancer bit of the hospital on the Lisburn road. The grass bit filled with people drinking and smoking. In previous years they used the building to pee in.
That seemed to be the Belfast model of orange fest. Last year the main shopping street (Donegal Place) was covered in broken glass, piles of rubbish, empty bottles and cans. There was no access by vehicle to Chichester St. That exit was blocked by a bunch of 8 sitting on their drums.
Drumcree a forgotten embarrassment. The Lower Ormeau won't see another parade. Last Friday night the Upper Ormeau Rd hosted a remembrance parade for a couple of dead UDA killers and their mates (the most recent an ex leader, chopped up by his own. Samurai (traditional Protestant defence weapon) sword. A falling out after a regular afternoon of drink and drugs.
Where's the culture?
Leave Van Morrison out of it. He did Astral Weeks when he was 21 in New York 1968.
And I was going to keep this short.
 
Erm, lower Ormeau hasn't seen a parade in over ten years so the parade around annadale isnt going to make any difference, unfortunately in the environment of northern Ireland, one mans terrorist is another mans freedon fighter. So jo bratty was seen as hero to the people of annadale the rights or wrongs of that belief is one of the legacys we still have to deal with. Interesting you should mention the macmillion centre, I used to work thier a few years ago for the citizens advice based there, one of my jobs was to go up to the cancer wards to get the docters to sign of on the terminally ill patients docs to make sure they got thier full benefit entitlement, a sad part of the job, to be sure, on the way to the ward you would wall past groups people with chemotherapy drips attached to them with their bald heads puffing away on thier Stirling superkings at the front entrance, but thats by the by as neither the macmillion centre or the cancer wards have green areas in front of them, the qub nursing school, next to dunluce health centre does so im guessing thats where you mean, yer you are right the mess some people leave behind is disgusting, but then the mess left behind at Glastonbury or the Notting Hill festival is disgusting, any event where large amounts of alcohol are consumed, well drinks in, wits out springs to mind, for my own part, I watch the parade a little further up the Lisburn Road, in all there was about 30 of us in our group, I can assure you we cleaned up all our mess ( including the bqq's) and disposed of the rubbish responsibly.
I have walked the 12th many times, my son will, when he is older, I do not hate Catholics, I dont even think about them on the 12th to be honest, to busy waving to old friends, having a laugh with present friends, counting down the miles till I get a seat again, the 12th is a round trip of about 17 miles, my aforementioned son, will be raised to enjoy his culture, he will also be raised to respect it, which means being respectful of other peoples cultures to, I wonder if he will be paid the same respect back
By the way, if you wanted to see a more toned group of men parading, gay pride was last weekend ;-)

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skid2

LE
Book Reviewer
I just don't get the culture thing. Run on the lines of Rosknowlagh or the big flagship country parade. (Where the OO sent a letter explaining what was going on to every house on that parade route. That's smacks of clever thinking)
Belfast lodge just seems to want to fight everyone and lose. I have no connection with the order but it seems as if they elect the terminally stupid to positions of authority, leaving the full time officers to do a lot of panic stricken firefighting.
As I said I feel this weekend will follow an unsurprising and predictable course. Which is why the city centre will be largely empty.
And no I'm not an admirer of republican revisionism, Belfast Feile or the Ardoyne fleadh (sticky on bits are available)
As for the pride thing I did go for a pint or three in the city centre, on Sunday, wearing a rather fetching pink and blue checked shirt. One compliment, and no offers.
 

skid2

LE
Book Reviewer
You also seem to be forgetting



Are you annoyed at the Sinn Fein rebellion because they had the spine to start it before the 'Loyalists' got the balls up to start theirs?
That's a little unfair. The Loyalists were armed, tweeded and ready to roll (fighting the British in Ireland to stay British) until that Kaiser Bill chap went off and picked on plucky little Belguim.
 

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