How Irish Am I?

Growing up in Australia I had very little understanding of my cultural background.

With the knowledge that I had Irish ancestry, I told people I was Australian and one quarter Irish. It didn’t matter that this was wrong – or that my maths was appalling, and I was actually half Irish – because our cultural background was not something my family discussed. And I never gave much thought to it.

On my Mum’s side, my grandparents were born in Australia and my great grandparents were English, with a bit of French thrown in there somewhere. I never knew my Dad’s parents, only that they were Irish, emigrating from Ireland to England and then onto Australia where my Dad was born.

My Mum was raised Protestant and my Dad was raised Catholic; as a consequence I was raised religion-less, with my parents deciding that it was better to leave me with this choice (read: conflict).


June 22, 2010 14 comments

Bloomsday – it's all about Joyce

Whether you have read it or not, James Joyce’s main work Ulysses had a huge impact on literature. The novel follows two protagonists and their actions around Dublin in Ireland, over the course of June 16, 1904.

And we in Dublin are pretty proud of our own literary genius Joyce (even though he left Ireland at the age of 22 and stayed mostly abroad until his death in 1941) – so if you happen to be in Dublin today, don’t be surprised if you see men and women wearing outfits from the 1910′s, reciting Ulysses on street corners. It’s Bloomsday after all.

Image via, taken by TedRheingold


June 16, 2010 2 comments

The value of (European) art

When it comes to the valuation of art, I’m a pessimist. Especially after the experiences I made as a musician in Germany, before moving to Ireland.

In direct comparison (although I’m not an expert) I would say there is a noticeable difference between Germany and Ireland when it comes to the valuation of art and acceptance of new artists. From what I’ve seen, the independent artists here in Ireland are much more easier accepted as artists by the public than in Germany, where most artists are only considered so when this is declared as profession on their tax declaration.


June 2, 2010 Comments disabled

Everyone's Irish on March 17th

For most people, the 17th of March every year marks the one day when everyone can become Irish. And rightly so: wherever there’s an Irish pub in this world, may this be Macao, Cancun or even Reykjavik, you’ll get the chance to sip at a Guinness and try your singing skills at the “Irish Rover” and (of course) “Whiskey in the Jar“.

everyone's Irish

Image via

And how to celebrate St. Patrick’s day? (more…)

March 17, 2010 5 comments

The Dubliners

I have a personal interest in the blog I’m praising today, I have to confess beforehand.

That’s because I’m one of the writers of the Dublin Community Blog, and I’m really proud of it. The blog was originally set up in 2006 by main man Daragh MacGrath to promote Dublin and to drive interest in blogging, and has been going strong ever since. A really big thing for us was winning the Irish Blog Awards for Best Group Blog in 2009 – and we also have been longlisted for the 2010 awards!

We are a diverse community of writers (loads of Irish veteran bloggers like Red Mum and Roseanne, plus expats from the US, Germany, Romania and Holland), all with different interests and topics that we write about – so you’ll get a pretty diverse picture of the Irish capital when reading our posts. And you’ll even find tailor-made guides for visitors! So by all means visit us in Dublin – or on our blog.

Read more:
More Irish blogs from Blogs of the World
On yer bikes! Dublin discovers bike sharing
Can you recommend a Blog of the World? Tell us about it here

March 4, 2010 2 comments


One of the most-read Irish blogs in my feedreader is A gathering of some of Irelands mot prolific bloggers and writers, among them Darren Byrne and Rick O’Shea, this funny bunch supplies a constant flow of blogposts on all things pop-culture, Irish and world-wide.

So if you are interested what movies, concerts and youtube-videos are the talk of the land here, please pay them a visit.

And, by the way, a culchie is a person from rural Ireland, often used in an insulting sense. But this should not put you off.

Read more:
Irish blogs on Blogs of the World
On yer bikes! Dublin discovers bike sharing
Ireland’s top five tourist destinations without tourists

December 30, 2009 1 comment