Bob Geldof? Rob Ripof, more like…

Like so many of his generation, Bob Geldof idolised me in the early 80s. He made no secret of modelling ‘The Boomtown Rats’ on my band, ‘The Council Estate Speckle-tailed Hamsters’.

I tolerated the likeness in the beginning, but when The Rats released ‘Don’t Like Mondays’ two weeks after The Hamsters' far less successful ‘Mondays are Shite’, I felt compelled to confront the cad in a London pub.

Bob was initially gracious. He apologised for any offense caused and offered me a generous co-writer credit on ‘Don’t Like Mondays’. I accepted his apology, shook his hand, waited for him to turn away, took hold of a bar stool and smashed it over his back.

Unfortunately, I failed to capitalise on my underhandedness. Bob quickly gained the upper hand, gifting me a beating so severe that I permanently lost the ability to exhale. Rendered unconscious for the last forty minutes of the assault, there’s not much else I recall about it. That said, credible eyewitnesses inform me that Sir Bob….

  • threw me down a flight of stairs, paid a flock of hobos to retrieve me, and repeated the process several times
  • stripped me naked and took a Brillo pad to over 80% of my body
  • grasped my hair in one hand, penis in the other, and spun me around in a helicopter fashion. When sufficient momentum was built, he released his grip and sent me careering through the plate-glass front of a local Burger King
Things were slightly awkward between us afterwards. Still, some years later I naively shared with him my brainwave for a one-off charity single, sung by a super-group of contemporary musicians. Little did I know he'd steal my idea and repackage it as ‘Do They Know It’s Christmas’.

I present now the lyrics of my own super-group charity single, still regarded by many as the greatest song ever written. Enjoy!



Flann O’Coonassa

First Verse

(Jimmy Nail) Rejoice starving Africans, celebrities have heard your call,

(Rolf Harris) ‘Norms’ had their chance to help, and managed to do fuck all,

(Tommy Cannon) And though you could argue, we already do more than enough,

(Bobby Ball) There’s no argument about it, we definitely already do


(Everybody) It’s time to feed the Needy, they haven’t a pot to piss,

(Lou Ferrigno) In………………………………………………………………….,

(Everybody) Yes it’s time to feed the Needy, though obviously not right now,

(Willis from Different Strokes) But definitely in the short to medium term, it’ll be time to act right then

Second Verse

(Bono’s second cousin, Dermot Hewson) I saw a starving African, near my fixed abode,

(Max from Hart to Hart) Fearing what I didn’t know, I chased him down the road,

(Mel) He fled into the blades of a combined harvester, and now he’s in the ground,

(Kim) We have to start helping these people, but obviously not right now


(Everybody) Because it’s time to feed the Needy, they haven’t a pot to piss,

(Lou Ferrigno) In………………………………………………………………….,

(Everybody) Yes it’s time to feed the Needy, though obviously not right now,

(Willis from Different Strokes) But definitely in the short to medium term, it’ll be time to act right then

Back’n'Forth with the Movers and Shakers

As a globally celebrated renaissance man, naturally I’ve gained the ear of many public figures throughout the decades. Often I’ve had occasion to correspond privately with these movers and shakers via email, text message, letters, and in extreme circumstances, assassin-o-grams. On a whim, I now betray the trust of these putzes by publishing a selection of the more notable exchanges. Enjoy!


Dear Mrs Ono,

How are you? That’s great. Listen, keep your God-damned oar out of The Beatles, or so help me, I’ll make Sushi of you. You have 48 hours to comply,


p.s. stay the hell away from The Monkees too.

Dear Flann,

Comply with what? Leave the country? Annul my marriage? I could pass your threat to the police, but I’d rather appeal to your humanity. You’re obviously a Beatles fan, and I assure you, so am I. But John and I are married now, and fans are going to have to accept that,

Peace and Love,

Dear Mrs Ono,

You have four hours left to comply. Unfortunately, that’s four hours at time-of-writing. Considering I don’t intend posting this letter until tomorrow morning, and allowing two days for delivery, I’m sorry to inform you that you’re most likely now dead. I therefore presume this is John reading? Well John, as your biggest fan and wife’s killer, I wish to express how sorry I am for your loss. Now get back to work,

Deepest sympathies,


You are obviously a disturbed individual who needs professional help. Do not contact my wife again,


Dear John,

Can I just say how much I love your music? The Beatles’ albums are the soundtrack to my life, and for this I will forever be in your debt. That said, I am currently locked in a deadly game of cat and mouse with your wife. One will live, and the other shall fall, but it’s between me and her, so keep your oar out,


Dear Flann,

I heard about the thing with Yoko. I want in.


Dear Paul,

No deal. This is between me, Yoko, and maybe John if things get messy. Keep your oar out,


Dear Flann,

Deal me in,


Dear Ringo,

No deal. If I won’t throw McCartney a piece of the action, why the hell would I bring a third-rate pot-clanger like you in? Find your own Asian meddler to gut like a fish,


Dear Flann,

I have an incinerator in my backyard. Perfect for dispatching an Asian body,

Mickey Dolenz

Dear Mickey,

Forget the whole thing. Too many people know about it now. Bunch of God-damn blabber-mouths,

Yours of unsatisfied bloodlust,


Text message sent from my phone, 15:04 22/05/09


Text message received by my phone, 15:42 22/05/09

The White House. Don’t contact me on this number again.

Text message sent from my phone, 15:43 22/05/09


Voice message left on my phone, 15:46 22/05/09

Sir, this is Agent James Downey of the CIA. We have reason to believe you have been sending unsolicited correspondence to the president. A car will be with you shortly. Please remain in your current location.

Text message sent from my phone, 15:49 22/05/09


Text message received by my phone, 15:52 22/05/09

Who is this? McCain?

Text message sent from my phone, 15:56 22/05/09


Text message received by my phone, 15:58 22/05/09

I beat you fair and square McCain. Don’t make me come down to Arizona and put a beat-down on your withered ass, you fuck.

Text message sent by my phone, 15:59 22/05/09



Subject: Role of a lifetime!

Bobby, baby, do I have a role for you! It’s a prequel to ‘The Sound of Music’ that focuses mainly on Maria’s pre-abbey years as an Austrian hooker and crystal meth addict. We’re calling it ‘The Sound of Prostitution and Vomit’. You’re slated to play Maria’s pimp, Herr Goldtooth. Britney Spears has expressed an interest in playing Maria, and Al Pacino is attached to play a cop of some sort.

That reminds me, I mislaid Al’s phone number. Could you email it to me along with both your home addresses? If you have any contact details for Britney Spears lying around, that would be helpful too.

Subject: Re: Role of a lifetime!

Listen to me, you nickel and dime bum. I don’t know who you are or how you got this address, but I want no part of your crumby project. Be a stranger, jackass.

Subject: Role of a lifetime!

Oh, I get it. I see what’s going on here. Not prepared to play second fiddle to Britney Spears? Fine, we rewrite Maria as Martin (we might have to silence Julie Andrews in real life, lest she kicks up a publicity stink), you play the part, Pacino is your pimp, and Britney plays a cop of some sort. Or we leave the script as-is, you play Maria in drag, Britney is your pimp, and Pacino plays a cop of some sort.

Subject: Re: Role of a lifetime!

Lose my email address, asshole. Lose it before I lose my cool. I will end you, my friend. Do you hear me? I will end you.

Subject: Role of a lifetime!

You drive a hard bargain Bobby. Okay, final offer: you, Britney and Pacino all play cops of some sort. It’s vice-squad, and you’re all undercover as hookers, but secretly, you all yearn for the simple, humble ways of the seminary, and a modest daily ration of crystal meth to take the edge of monastic life.

Subject: Re: Role of a lifetime!


Subject: Role of a lifetime!


Interview with Satan

Following from my recent interview with God (see here), I caught up with Satan to find out how things are going in the eternal, fiery pit of Hades. Enjoy!

Me: Satan, thanks for taking the time.
Satan: Pleasure. That thing I did for you work out ok?
Me: Eh…thing? I know not of this ‘thing’, to which you refer.
Satan: The plane crash, with whats-his-face on board? The audit guy from Revenue?
Me: Perhaps we could talk about this some other…
Satan: Sure, we’ll talk later. I need you to come in and finalise some things with the contract anyway.

Me: Now, I recently interviewed God.
Satan: Ah, Larry.
Me: Excuse me?
Satan: You were saying, you interviewed Larry.
Me: No, I said I interviewed God.
Satan: Yes, Larry. His name’s Larry.
Me: You’re shitting me.
Satan: Eh, hello. God is his job title. His name is Larry Dunne.
Me: I’m stunned. Do you have a name too?
Satan: Percy Hornwinkle.

Me: Ok….Percy. How would you characterise your relationship with…Larry?
Satan: On a scale of one to ten?
Me: Sure.
Satan: A six.
Me: Really? I’d have thought less.
Satan: Ah, I’ve got no beef with The Almighty. We still bowl every second Thursday. There’s just a few things we’ll probably never see eye-to-eye on.
Me: Like good and evil?
Satan: There’s that. Also, he has this stupid hip-hop handshake that does my friggin mallet in. Up high, down low, too slow – it goes on for about five minutes. He only does it because nobody else knows all the moves, so he ends up looking like Snoop Dog while you feel like a schmuck.

Me: When I interviewed God, he cited Chris De Burgh as his greatest fuck-up. What’s been yours?
Satan: Bob Dylan.
Me: Dylan? But he’s class.
Satan: Exactly. I gave him all the tools to be shite. Tone deaf, surly with the press, short-arse, appetite for drugs, hippy tendencies, penchant for bleeding-heart protest songs. Imagine my horror when all his handicaps somehow gelled into more than the sum of their parts. That was a real low for me, professionally.
Me: I can imagine. Did you consider packing it in?
Satan: I honestly did. Ghandi expressed an interest in taking over on a trial basis.

Me: Woah, back up there. Mahatma Gandhi?
Satan: Yes, you know him?
Me: Mahatma Gandhi applied for the job of Satan?
Satan: Caretaker Satan, technically.
Me: Jesus. Wasn’t Gandhi all about peace and love during his life?
Satan: Broadly speaking, yes. But there was a less seen side of him.
Me: Back side?

Satan: No, I mean figuratively. There was a side of him blacker than the coals of hell. He despised marsupials, for example. I can understand someone being indifferent to marsupials, but seething, violent hatred? I once saw him do things to a Koala…I mean, I’m Satan, so I’ve done some shit in my time, believe me…but that Koala’s expression…it’s burned into my brain. Little fur-ball didn’t know what hit him.
Me: Are you….
Satan: No.
Me: …you are, you’re crying.
Satan: I’m not.
Me: You bloody are.
Satan: I wonder, would my pitchfork fit successfully up your hole?
Me: Touché sir. Well played.

Me: Moving on from Dylan, any notable examples of your handiwork in the press at the minute?
Satan: Obama.
Me: Ah come on, he’s the dog’s bollox!
Satan: On the surface, yes. But there’s a side to him. A side blacker than the coals…
Me: I’m having major déjà vu here.
Satan: …of hell. He’s done things to marsupials that would turn Gandhi’s stomach. God help the sleek, majestic kangaroo if America ever seizes control of Australia on Obama’s watch.

Me: I see. Eh…Satan?
Satan: Please, call me Percy.
Me: Ok. Percy?
Satan: Yes?
Me: Don’t take this the wrong way, but are you a tad bonkers? The whole marsupial thing sounds a trifle whacko.
Satan: Are you calling me a liar?
Me: Not at all. I’m calling you a fruitcake.

Satan: You’ve got some balls.
Me: Thanks. The secret is to scrub them with a steroid cream every night before…
Satan: That’s not what I meant.
Me: Oh.
Satan: Call me a fruitcake? Me? You’ve made a powerful enemy here today.
Me: Oooh, I’m soooo scared. Percy’s going to get me. Big, bad Percy….
Satan: I’m warning you….
Me: What are you gonna do, hah? A minute ago you were bawling like a little woman, sniffling like a little….AH JAYSUS, NOT THE PITCK FORK…AH FECK, IT’S RIGHT UP THERE….I WON’T BE ABLE TO SHIT RIGHT FOR A MONTH…SWEET SUFFERIN MOTHER O’ JAYSUS…

Ambush in Saigon (continued)

I now present the final page of my war novel ‘Ambush in Saigon’ (read its first page here). In 1986, The Irish Times branded the book “…historically inaccurate on a Sergeant Bilko scale.”

The Independent was less kind, calling it “…an affront not only to war veterans and humankind generally, but perhaps to the universe, and the very fabric of space/time itself.” Enjoy!



Flann O’Coonassa

Page 564 of 564

…whereas if you sit on your hand for, say, five or ten minutes until it numbs, it can feel like someone else is touching you.”
“Not sure I follow you Sarge,” says Private Jones.
“Never mind,” I laugh, “you just concentrate on getting better son.”
“Did they find my legs yet Sarge?” asks Private Jones tearfully.
“When they find your arms, I’m sure your legs will be nearby.”
“And my skull?”
“Again, same explosion, so when your arms and legs turn up, your skull is bound to be close by. It couldn’t have gotten far. Now you just make sure you keep that helmet on soldier. I’m ordering you to stay alive.”
“Yes Sergeant,” gurgles Jones before immediately dying.

Not his fault a man ain’t designed for livin’ without arms, legs and a skull. Still, an order’s an order, and I’ll have to write him up for insubordination. It’ll probably mean a posthumous court-martial and loss of pension rights for his widow. War is hell.

I walk to the cliff edge and look down into the valley. Jesus. Must be more than two million Vietnamese down there, staring up at me in silence, like a gang of mime-artists taking a vow of silence in a library for mutes. Someone coughs and is chastised by the rest of the two million. Dammit, are they with me or against me? Only one way to find out.

I scoop up Hitler’s severed head by the hair, and thrust it forth in my raised hand. After several suspenseful seconds, a joyous roar erupts that scientists of the future will conclude could be heard from space. I plant the Führer’s head on the bayonet of an upright rifle, scoop up Eva Braun’s severed head and similarly thrust it forth. The roar fades to silence.

“Who the fuck is she?” comes a lone voice from the valley.
“It’s Eva Braun,” I shout back.
“What’s she got to do with anything?” comes another voice.
“Hang on,” I reply, sensing myself losing the crowd.

I half-volley Braun’s head a few dozen yards behind me, pluck Hitler’s head from the bayonet and thrust it forth again. The approving roar returns, sending shivers down my spine.

“You have saved us all,” one voice shouts.
“Are you God?” asks another.
“God?” I reply. “Perhaps. Or maybe God is within all of us.”
“So in a way, I might be God?” asks the same voice.
“No, I was being metaphysical,” I reply. “But if anybody’s actually God, it’s probably me.”

Am I God? It’s a fair question, but right now I’m just tired. Tired of killin. Also tired of maiming, which takes roughly the same amount of energy as killing, for less of a return.

I salute the crowd a final time, toss Hitler’s head into my trophy sack and walk for the sunset. I don’t get five yards before Consuela, the farmer’s daughter, drops to her knees and wraps her arms around my left leg, imploring me to stay. I try to ignore her, but after seven or eight miles, her weight begins to slow me down.

“Please Señor, you cannot leave us,” she cries hysterically, now dry-humping my leg.
“Be brave, buxom Consuela. You’ll find someone else. Someone better.”
“Liar!” she spits.
“You’re right. There’s no one better,” I reply, feeling I owe her the truth.
“You cannot come to my country, make love to me, my sisters and my mother, and then leave us forever. You cannot allow us to taste heaven, and then ask us to return to hell.”

She’s right. I can’t bare the thought of how miserable she’ll be without me. I un-holster my Luger and put the barrel to her temple.

“I will wait for you on the other side, my love,” she smiles.

The gun trembles. My finger fidgets the trigger. But I can’t do it. I care about her too much. Bravely, I hand my gun to Private Hudson and ask him to carry out the shooting. He duly obliges by firing a single bullet into Consuela’s forehead. She falls to the ground, smiling. I take a knee and hold her hand. A break in the clouds appears, and a single ray of sunshine bathes us both in radiant light.

“I…can…see heaven,” she struggles.
“Ssssh now. Don’t talk shite,” I reply.
“I….I see God…It’s…’s you,” she utters with her last words before going cross-eyed and passing onto the next world.

Another innocent victim of war, but not the last. Goddamit, when will the human race learn? When…


Old Rants

Rant by is licensed under a Creative Commons License. Copyright © 2009 Flann O'Coonassa