Reality TV with Dick and Mary

10 Aug

Reality TV, these days, seems to involve paying people who cannot act, and who are quite boring, to live out their dull lives on our television screens. It was not always thus.

After settling in Dublin, back in the 1980’s, most Sunday evenings I would head off to the local pub at around 9.30pm. This timing was about an hour after the broadcast of a very popular weekly television soap which had consistently enthralled the nation for years. The main storyline for months had revolved around the marital difficulties of Dick and Mary.

Dick had been less than faithful and had been found out. Week after week, he made episodic and increasingly desperate attempts to repair matters. Every Sunday evening, when I arrived in the pub, there was the actor who played Dick holding court at the bar, a pint of Guinness in his hand. I had to resist the urge to walk straight up to him and say:

‘Dick, Dick, Dick drink is not the answer. Now leave your pint on the counter and go straight home to Mary. She’s very upset you know – only this evening she was on the phone to her mother in floods of tears!’

But I never did.

(Edited abstract from the book – London Irish Dublin English)

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