This Week in the Tumblr

Alert readers have noticed the regular updates to this blog’s sidebar: daily photos, news stories from Ireland and all over the world, and other items of general interest. If you’d like to see Tumblr entries in full (or subscribe to their RSS feed), go to the website,

This week’s tumblr included these items, and more:

  • Ireland’s national rugby team beat France in an upset, at Croke Park in Dublin. Ireland’s team “punches well above its weight,” in the Six Nations Championship, in part due to its strong professional rugby clubs. France is a reliable powerhouse. Last year, Anita and I watched them pick apart Ireland, looking superior in every way. This year, we went to a friend’s for dinner, so we didn’t watch the game. But we’ve heard about it!
  • Taxi drivers mounted a series of protests around Dublin, with the largest on Taxi Protest Fitz SquareMonday near our home at Fitzwilliam Square. Since taxi licensing was deregulated in 2000, the number of taxis on the streets of Dublin has exploded. The startling fact is that Dublin has more taxis than New York City. (The protesting drivers cite this fact regularly.) The drivers want a means of appealing decisions by the Taxi Regulator, and a moratorium on new licenses.
  • Ireland’s national soccer authority hired Giovanni Trapattoni as the coach of the national team. Trapattoni is one of the greatest Italian coaches of all time, and hopes are high for Ireland’s bid for the 2010 World Cup. On Wednesday, Ireland beat Georgia, 2-1, to strengthen their position in the European qualifying round.
  • The “Pepper Canister” is the unofficial name of St Stephen’s Church,Pepper Canister scaffolding a prominent landmark just a few blocks from our home. Some part of the church has been surrounded by scaffolding since we arrived in Dublin (and well before). Restorers recently discovered that the columns that support the copper dome of the Pepper Canister — the most unique parts of the building — are structurally unsound. St Stephen’s Church does not presently have the funds to repair the problem, so the present scaffolding will hold the dome in place for the foreseeable future.