There are few more terrifying sights in this world than when my editor approaches my desk, teeth bared, the steely glint of intent in his eye. He will thud his meaty fists down, scattering pencils, notes, photographs of my family - and other more photogenic families that I keep near - and my lunch-time hog-roast from my desk. He will then lean into my face and through a fug of hot, coffee and yak's milk-tainted breath bark an order, demanding that some article or such be written. This was the unenviable situation I found myself in this morning as he loomed over me, cawing, "A man's made a video of himself in his garden. I need 400 words pronto."
After some minutes trying to explain to him that people take videos in their gardens all the time, and that if that was the barrier of what we deemed to be 'newsworthy' then we were in a sorry place indeed. If that was where we drew the line, I argued, then it'd only be a matter of time before the site is little more than a cess-pit of articles variously recounting people mowing their lawns; getting in arguments with their spouses over the needlessly complex assembly instructions of a swing-ball set; accidentally maiming a burrowed fox while using a strimmer etc. However, he soon informed me that this was not just a video of any man in any garden. The man was in fact Tony, father of Conor, McGregor in, presumably, his own garden.
The video, which emerged yesterday, is a joy to behold. It shows McGregor the elder lounging on some garden furniture and pulling no punches while giving his thoughts on the manner in which DART ticket machines dispense change. It is always refreshing to see those who've assumed positions in the public eye use their power responsibly to help bring attention to the most important social issues of the day. He recounts in heart-wrenching fashion, how he'd tried to purchase a ticket with a 'crisp' €20 note and, when collecting his change was appalled to see that it was all to be given in 'coinage' which he couldn't possibly be expected to fit within the sleek confines of his 'hand-fitted Hugo Boss' suit. Truly, a man still with his finger on the pulse.
Conor McGregor’s Dad complaining about coinage. I have questions. pic.twitter.com/mt7PeXt9qE
— Michael Lennon (@Nick_Vanhelsing) July 22, 2018
Now as another great Dubliner, Edmund Burke, said, "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." What kind of society would we be if we ignored Tony McGregor's plaintive cry for help. How could we wake up each morning and hold ourselves with any pride if we knew that somewhere, out there, Tony McGregor was staggering around a DART platform, his fists brimming with coinage; errant 2 euros clattering to the floor as he tries to stuff the copious amounts of change into the all too small pockets of his custom-made suit. How could we live with ourselves when we hear that he is eventually found, slumped against an advertising billboard on a platform, his cheeks wet with tears, his custom-made Hugo Boss suit spoiled by the numerous unseemly bulges of coinage. Thankfully, a helping hand has been extended, a solution has been found, a GoFundMe page has been set up to get Tony McGregor a Leap Card so that he can avoid such a disastrous situation ever occurring.
This is the part of the article where I would sign off with some reference to Iarnród Éireann expecting some call from Aoife McGregor, but the GoFundMe page has pipped me to the post. Go, give generously so that Tony McGregor's dreams of not having his suit sullied by the unsightly issue of change can be fulfilled.