Friday, 29 May 2009

Election Diary: T- 8: Adventures Online, Offline and In the Line

This blog is getting famouser and famouser.

(Yes, I am aware that the elders of the standard English are frowning somewhere. Wait 'til they hear about the kid in my class who brang a package of crips to the hopsital for his cousind!).

Thanks to the Irish Times Campaign Watch, who took up on my press release about our online campaign. The comments to follow are interesting, including this quote from blogger and freelance journalist Mark Coughlan;
The Looney Left hasn’t just been going for a while, it’s hilariously written and very insightful. Even as general blogs go, it’s good.
Very decent of you Mark, thanks!

It's been great to make the front page of again in the blogging round-up, and frequently post about this site in their daily campaign round-ups. They all ensure more hits to the site which we're obviously delighted with, so thanks to those concerned.

We've been popular offline too, so it seems. I posted a few days back about Fiona Looney's name continuing to crop up on the canvass; it came up again tonight in Belgard, but this time there was a real connection to me. A woman mentioned that my name had come up in the papers, and lo and behold it seems Fiona (who I know is a voter in the area) has taken a shine to me - or my posters at least. Here's the opening paragraph from her column in the Sunday Mail magazine
The Husband suggests that Councillor Michael Murphy is a spoilsport of sorts, because he is already wearing a beard and glasses in his election posters. I'm far more excited by the presence in our area of a candidate called Dermot Looney, who boasts a funky strip on the back of his posters with 'Vote 1 Looney' on it. The Boy says he'll 'acquire' one for me and I don't doubt him for a second.
The article is a general colour piece on election posters. I managed to find Fiona on twitter and let her know that she's welcome to a poster by legitimate means, so perhaps she'll take me up. The strip, by the way, appears on the back of all Labour posters.

Belgard Heights, incidentally, is known in political circles as being strongly FF but the reception we've gotten there tells us anything but. I taught briefly in the local primary school, Scoil Ard Mhuire, and was glad to meet some of the parents of the kids I'd worked with, including one man who solved the great mystery of our campaign to date. Some weeks ago, a mystery man stopped his van in traffic and walked over to a car of one of our supporters, who had a Vote Looney window sticker on her car. The mystery man told our supporter how he admired my speech on nationalising the banks at the Labour Party Conference and was assuredly giving me his Number 1. We hadn't a clue who it was until he came over and introduced himself tonight. A lovely moment.

The posters remain a source of great comedy to the kids in my current school, particularly those from other classes (my lot have their minds on higher things, like the upcoming tour to Clara Lara). I tend to meet them in their lines as they walk to class each morning or breaktime, hollering after me that their parents, relatives and even they, themselves, will be voting for me next week. Sadly their almost-universal habitation in the Tallaght South ward may get in their way.

Tomorrow is our last day together as the school is off next week, a pretty lucky break for me which'll allow me to campaign full-time over the last six days. But after the election it's straight back to work - with the infamous 'Dip Day' approaching on June 15th, just 9 days after the count. At this rate this usually-stressful time for NQT's (newly-qualified teachers) will be a relief for this candidate!