Thursday, March 25, 2021



She asked, Why did Yeats call willows sally trees?
I answered without thinking, saileach,
as if that explained everything, and said,
I speak more Irish than the average bear.
But then it hit me, an epiphany—I was gobsmacked.
Bears don’t speak much by way of Irish, now, do they?
Not to mention there are no more bears in Ireland
other than the one in a Dublin business park.


Something funny that happened in a conversation yesterday. I always think I've retained next-to-no Irish, but then vocabulary arises unbidden at the oddest times. In this case, nonsensical. I won't mention how "chun" is a particular pet ear worm. My grandmother would say you have a quare mind.

The DNA of the extinct Irish brown bear (Ursus arctos—either beithir or artos in Irish, not to be confused with the bigger, baddass cave bear, Ursus spelaeus), had a curious genetic twist, they were an intermediary species between the modern brown bear and the polar bear—an apparent love child species.

There were once polar bears in the Dublin Zoo but they were unhappy in their tiny enclosure, so they were shipped off to Hungary in 2003. So I had to kick the end-line to the curb/kerb. I heard rumor there are two rescued brown bears from Lithuania living in Donegal. No mention if they have any latent musical talents.

I speak more Irish than the average bear.

But then it dawned on me—

bears don’t  speak Irish, now, do they?

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