Tuesday, July 30, 2013

"Drink and Time in Dublin" by Flann O'Brien (Myles na Gopaleen)

This just might be the perfect Irish drinking story by a writer legendary for his own drinking and love of the pub life.  I am grateful for the opportunity to read one of his works through the generous gesture of Dalkey Archives who will soon be publishing a collection of his short stories.  In each of the 75 or so Q and A sessions I have done with Irish authors I have asked them why there is so much drinking in Irish literature.   I received some brilliant answers in response but there is no consensus.  I have a feeling if I asked Flann O'Brien this I would be lucky just to be asked if I was a tea-totaler and on an unlucky day I might get a bottle of Guinness broken over my head. 

This really fun to read story is about what happens when a man's wife leaves him unsupervised for a few days when she goes to visit relatives.   We follow him into the pubs as he gets drunker and drunker. Of course he gets himself in some trouble.  I laughed when I learned he was supposed to stay at his brother-in-law's house while his wife was gone.  There is an interesting turn of events at the close of this very entertaining story. 

You can read this story at the link below.

I hope to read more of his work one day.

Mel u


  1. I've not read O'Brien but I have an Irish friend who really likes his work. I've always been intrigued by the title At-Swim-Two-Birds. I'll be on the lookout for the book of his short stories.
    I think there's so much drinking in Irish lit because in Ireland there's a lot of drinking. I looked around a bit and found this interesting study:

  2. Nan. I read the article. It is very good. Thanks for sharing it and your comment.


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