Thursday, 17 June 2010

GAA bans the vuvuzela - no foreign instruments, please...

It has long been acknowledged that the GAA contains some of the greatest minds of the 19th Century.  An organisation that – right up until the 70s - banned its own members from playing or attending “foreign” games, and only reluctantly allowed the hosting of soccer and rugby matches in (the largely publicly funded) Croke Park a few years ago, having come under enormous political pressure.

Now the GAA is turning its sights on the vuvuzela. Most of us will now be all too familiar with the awful buzzing tones of the instrument played by fans at the World Cup finals in South Africa  -  and sure, they make a frightful racket. 

The vuvulela’s supporters claim that the plastic horns, which are blown like a trumpet, are based on traditional African instruments, but this is debated.  Whatever the truth about that, there is no doubt that the vuvuzela sounds as sweet as the most sugary Mozart symphony in comparision with our own "traditional"  uileann pipes.

But GAA fans be afraid, be very afraid. If I heard today's Morning Ireland correctly, it seems that the GAA is set to bar the vuvuzela from its citadel, Croke Park.

The justification?   Ostensibly, because it falls foul of present regulations applying to bugles and air horns. But GAA spokesman Alan Milton added that "it is impossible to say how popular it would be, because it's not a traditional Irish instrument”.  

 Let's hope that decibel-hungry GAA fans don't look for indigenous alternatives.

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Bernd said...

You must have misheard. Or you must be extracting the Michael. Or I must be hallucinating all this ... and, by the way, the "noble Celts" (GAA-approved, I assume) where using similar instruments (albeit not plastic) to make a frightful racket that scared the bejeezus out of their enemies before battle. Never mind waving their meat and two veg at them, as well.

Anonymous said...

Vuvuzela, computers, social you name it, everything is viral now. If the crowds in the stadiums of South Africa were playing out of tune xylophones then their cousins would turn up on the terraces of Ireland. Annoying but harmless.


Bernd said...

On second thoughts ... maybe it is just a cynical ploy be the GAA to hop onto the World Cup bandwagon via the vuvuzela. As not many people care about the GAA these days, I suppose. Or at least not as many as will be watching the matches in South Africa.

By the way - the holier-and-more-Gaelic-than-thou attitude of the GAA is perfectly in accord with having as main sponsor of the hurling championships ... Etihad Airways?

Harald75 said...

"It has long been acknowledged that the GAA contains some of the greatest minds of the 19th Century. "

... love that one GM.

The Gombeen Man said...

Ooops. Misquoted the GAA in the original post - unlike Gombeen Nation ot to be so previous! Sneaky correction made... hope none of you notice it ;-)

Here's the podcast. The relevent feature is a 3.17.

Morning Ireland podcast

Anonymous said...

Apparently they are banned from the 'strawberries and cream set' too at Wimbledon. As that bird from Essex said, "Cor blimey!".

Re:uileann pipes.. also known as Northumbrian Pipes... Nowt wrong wiv them GM, yer scall! ;)

Anonymous said...

as you say mr GM the gaa certainly has some of the greatest minds of all time kinda sorta like the masons soooh transparent and inclusive wunderfull really fot our great little democracy slainte BH

Anonymous said...

Mr BH please forgive me asking this and as I know you're busy you probably won't get the time to answer it but what does fot mean?

And Anon @20:18 please forgive me asking but who exactly is yer scall is he/she related to cor blimey? Pray do tell?

How are things in BH by the way?


Anonymous said...

Dakota where ter f*** are you from?
America?.... Galway?... Pray tell!

Anonymous said...

Oooh Look likes I touched a nerve! Nasty nasty wont get you anywhere. I'm from neither - at least I dont live in either - why do you even ask, pray tell? Interesting the two regions you mention though, are you giving something away there?

So who are you? By blanking out the f word it seems you may have some form of conscience but as you ask the question in the first place, it would imply to me that you have an inferiority complex. Ah well takes all kinds.

Try and stay civil we should be all friends here. Peace and harmony to you Anonymous.


Lew said...

I've got to ask this
Dakota, and the other "Anonymous" people
why do you sign yourself as Anonymous when you then say who you are and are well known here?
why not just use your name or id, it would make reading this blog (which I do faithfully many times a week) much simpler, knowing who is saying what, instead of trying to figure out is the 1st Anonymous the same as the 3rd, 6th etc and so on


Anonymous said...

Hi Lew, its good to hear you read the blog and GM will be so happy. Thats great. I don't see any problem using Anonymous for convenience sake. I always sign though. I suppose its a good thing really as theres a good chance you (not specifically you, Lew) will actually read the comment first before you get to the signature. Why would I add my name, (full name?)I'm surprised you would ask such a thing.

Though Lew saying that I know exactly what you mean by trying to make out which Anonymous is which. It could lead to confusion but overall I thing GMs system is good. I think I give a good representation of what I feel on matters so I'm quite confident signing with a pseudonym. I have full confidence in GM's moderation.

Hope that explains it Lew.

Have a great day!


The Gombeen Man said...

@ Bernd. Great choice of sponsor for an organisation that had a fatwa against "foreign" game for so long. Brilliant! Cheers for that, mate. Oh - hope Germany do well, on the evidence of their match against Aussie. At least they were playing attacking, enthusiastic football.

@ Harald. Ah shucks..thanks. See you've been keeping the close eye on the WC. Any predictions?

@Anon 20:18. Do I detect a certain P McCoch? I DO hope you're not telling we don't have the worldwide patent on the uileann pipes????? The very ones that Cuchulainn played between bouts of hurley before going into battle agin the foe?? (probably) This is a scandal!!!! ;-)

@ BH The Mason's aren't in it, my friend. And at least you don't get the Masons trying to pack your bags at the checkout at Tescos every day...

@ Dakota. Think BH's "fot" is just a literal, D. "for" is what's intended, I guess. Our Mr BH is a great man of mystery!

And speaking of which, identify yourself Mr McCoch!! I don't he's having a pop, D - just writing in Northern English, aye ;-)

@ Lew. How are things? Good point, let's rememember the names, lads and lassies!

The Gombeen Man said...

That's it D. If I ask people to do all that signing in, it's a bit cumbersome. So commenting as Anon and just signing at the end is fine.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for clearing that up GM. I was just a little confused about the fot thing. BH is always great, always gives me a laugh! Much needed in these times.

Also absolutely agree with you GM about the demise of the traditional salt of the earth Dub. So many characters and just decent people have gone. Dublin was a good place once, in so many ways.



The Gombeen Man said...

No worries, D. Blogger, me, or my computer are doing some funny things this morn... meant to have that Dublin one on the other thread where Anna was relating her experiences - then the computer crashed. One of those days! But don't worry, I'm not sensitive about dear old Dublin. I agree entirely. ;-)

Anonymous said...

What a load of sillyness.

The post makes the point that the vuvuzela makes a frightful racket, something the world agrees with or soon will agree with. Patience is running out with this gizmo!

It than takes a pop at the GAA for the eminently sensible move of banning them. Not fair surely?

It then tries to induce a collective titter at the GAA, and organisation most of us Brits never heard of until we got a look at the Croker - very impressive!!.

The back story that ran with a number of media outlets in the UK at this time was how come the GAA was so successfully running an amateur game without the millions the premiership gets in Britain? The point was made that we don't have anything to compare to it here and all in all we were impressed!.

On a side issue, we heard a rumour that the Irish rugger boys were considering pulling out of the Landsdown road deal when they realised the Croker gave them the advantage of having a very intimidating venue for visiting teams.

Any truth in that?

Max, London

The Gombeen Man said...

Oh, you're a Brit, Max, are you? Thought you told me something else before.

No, the GAA's only had the full backing of the State - in every way - since its inception. Being a pillar of it and all that.

Anyway, have you no other interests there in the south apart from slagging off the blog, like a very poor man's Eamo?

Anonymous said...

So what do you mean full backing? Do they get a grant?

I wouldn't say I slag off the blog, just point out the numerous inconsistencies and specious conclusions that it draws ;)

Max, London

The Gombeen Man said...

Right from the conception of the State the GAA has been the official sporting organisation of Ireland. It has had the full backing of the state and the church (being based on a parish basis) and all the organisational and financial help that entails since our little state came into being. I know the Croke Park redevelopment got €110 of Government money. I doubt if there are figures available, but I'd be amazed if the "official" game of Ireland didn't get financial support all along - even with their ban on other games.

Indeed, you could say that along with the Gaelic League, it was one of those groups that were part and parcel of the emerging Irish State, and has had a "special" place in it since. So the idea that is some kind of spontaneous "people's" movement is erroneous. It was set up at parish level, and taught at all state schools (still is, I think). So it's popularity is only another symptom of the old Irish sheep mentality, with this idea it was played from time immemorial. It wasn't. Its rules, team organisation and the like have more to do with Association Football.

Sure there's tales of Setanta and bronze hurleys and all that, but he could have just as likely been playing a forerunner of cricket.

There is nothing erroneous in what I have said. The GAA DID ban its members from playing other sports (Shay Given's father had to play football (soccer) in secret). TDs, councillors, priests and bishops were a fixture at Gah matches. Bishops threw the ball in at the All-Ireland finals, the much-abused Artane Boys Band (state industrial school) were recruited to entertain.

So don't fool yourself into thinking GAA is some organisation of the underdog. They play it here because they were told to... full stop. Indeed, kids used to be expelled from Christian Brothers school for playing soccer. Bill Cullen was one.

I don't feel I have to justify every posting I make, but for the record, my post was a humorous one. Not being a natural fan of the organisation, I naturally focused on the GAA spokesman's "it's not a traditional instrument line".

And sure, they are annoying, but I've been at many a football match where there's been some irritating f**ker shouting in my earhole... noise is part and parcel of sporting events.

Another thing - the FAI is not banning it. Only the GAA.

So, what is your connection with Ireland? Honestly, now.

Ponyboy said...

Hiya chums - lovely to see so much harmony oozing from the blog on the bugle issue. Hey GM I've just noticed the new logo on the blog and BY GOD SIR - Well done. If i'm not mistaken - isn't it Na Ciarogi (that very successful Irish Fab Four cover band) whose greatest hits album included "With a little help from my friends", "Fixing a hole", "You never gave me your money", "HELP", "Twist and shout", "Taxman" and of course their most famous cover of all - ""Money (that's what I want)".

Ponyboy said...

oh just one other thing on the Anonymous issue and the friction it's causing. The easiest option is, once you've typed in your comment and are faced with the "Comment as:" box where it says "Select profile"- scroll down (right down - cos there's more options past "Wordpress") till you hit "Name/URL". Select that and bang in your name, which will result in it appearing at the top of your post (in BOLD too) and then we can all be besties again

The Gombeen Man said...

Brilliant, PonyBoy. Love your Fab 4 analogy. Class!!!

anna said...

Yes i like the new logo..what does Ciarogi mean?
I DO Like the new slogan...nothing like Nailing your colours straight to the mast..
A Blogspot that does Exactly as it says on the tin as it were.....
AND gives us some Yeats as well....can't say GN lacks culture

Anonymous said...

sorry about the fot chaps just a typo error of course what imeant was the two organisations i mentioned are soooooh progressive thats why oirland is so far ahead of most in the third world BH

The Gombeen Man said...

@ Anna. Great, you spotted my bit of Yeats mangling! I've just consulted my bloodstained copy of "Progress in Irish" and can confirm that Na Ciarogi does, indeed, mean "The Beetles".

@ Ponyboy. I'm still laughing at that one, cobber - excellent. But you've given me the idea for an awful covers band touring the Gaeltacht singing Beetles covers, played with trad instruments, singing Fab Four hits "as Gaeilge". Save us from all harm.

One dity that probably won't make the setlist, though, is "Revolution".

@ BH. Yes,our lovely little land is a veritable little of Paradise on Earth, thanks to all the progressive thinkers and institutions we are blessed with. And the boyos in the masthead have played no small part in bringing this about. The heroes

anna said...

wow, i am getting Gombeen nation broadcasting to my laptop on the concrete + natural flat rocks beach at the forty foot bathing place, Dun Laoghaire, loads of happy smiling sunbathers here, on Sandyscoves little natural sand beach, strung out on all Dun L's other shingle and seaweeedy rock beaches, this place is paradaise on sea, (I Have forgotten to seethee off at the scumbags who rule us) ...If ypou can't Beat thme then live in the very pleasant places they Dun Laoghaire,
I'll bring a picnic down here next time,
OH and with an uncanny knakc of giving Irish people what they really really want the Irish Sun has been giving away Vuvuzuelas, , we now have 2 and will be able to imagine we are there ie n sunny RSA, my hppiness is complete

The Gombeen Man said...

Sounds idyllic, Anna. A bit of sun can hide a multitude, eh? :-)