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Lucan Informer 15,000 copies delivered monthly

January/February 2014 • Unit 55, Western Parkway Business Park, Ballymount, Dublin 12 • Tel: 01 813 8786 • Email: info@informer.ie • Web: www.informer.ie

Lucan and Palmerstown

Missing person app for Byrne Out public to help Gardaí Gardaí launch Child Rescue Ireland initiative

A new missing person smartphone application is set to maximise the response of An Garda Siochána, relating to Child Recue Ireland (CRI) alerts. The new initiative will allow members of the public to assist the Gardaí in cases of missing children. The recently launched app was created with the assistance of the Vodafone Ireland Foundation, and is available for free through most main media platforms. It is hoped the application will further increase the channels available to Gardaí for publicising a CRI Alert once it is launched. Using two strands, the app sends a notification for when a CRI Alert is issued, and a space to securely maintain up-to-date information (including photos) concerning your own children for easy access by the phone’s owner, if ever the need arose. The notification section will include details of the child and/or children who are the subject of a

By Paul O'Connell CRI Alert and any additional information that An Garda Síochána believe will help in their inquiries. People who have downloaded the app will be notified each time a CRI alert is updated with the latest information. They will also be able to share these CRI Alert updates with their Facebook friends, as well as being able to contact An Garda Síochána at 112 or 999. Speaking at the recent launch, Garda Commissioner Martin Callinan said: “With this launch, we now have an additional means of getting the message of the CRI Alert to the public in the form of a smartphone App. Over 50 percent (50%) of the public in Ireland own

New Year's Resolutions Green Scene - Page 4

a smartphone and as a result the potential for quickly reaching vast numbers of the population with critical information is enormous.” The Commisioner went on to say that only when strict criteria is met, would a CRI Alert be issued. “If these criteria are met, CRI Alert information is distributed by An Garda Síochána to the public through a range of communications channels.” Lucan TD and Minister for Children & Youth Affairs, Frances Fitzgerald, added her support, saying: “This efficient use of new technology is an innovative and welcome step towards ensuring that as a nation we use every tool at our disposal to keep our children safe... it provides (Gardaí) with a further method of enlisting the public’s assistance when investigating missing children and child abduction cases.”

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Jason Byrne Interview Page 10

Win a pair of Tickets Super Troupers See page 3

Deciding how to treat your Cold Ask The Pharmacist - Page 6

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2

The Informer

Lucan In Brief... Dublin dog fouling campaign launch

Dublin’s four local authorities have joined together to launch a new initiative to tackle dog fouling in streets and parks across Dublin. Currently there are in excess of 30,000 dogs living in Dublin, with 30,745 dog licences issued by the four Dublin local authorities in 2012 and 28,122 issued to date in 2013. The initiative will include a series of marketing and promotional initiatives to raise awareness of the environmental and health issues around dog fouling, as well as events for dog owners taking place in parks around Dublin city and county. Campaign spokesperson, Therese Langan, from Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown said, “Dog fouling remains a very serious issue and one of the top gripes for Dubliners. As a result, Dublin’s four local authorities are coming together with a new initiative to encourage all dog owners to clean up after their dog. "Dog owners who do not clean up after their dogs are creating a serious environmental and public health issue for everyone else. If not cleaned up and disposed of appropriately, dog faeces can cause serious medical problems such as Toxocara, leading to sight loss in children. So when dog owners are walking their dog in the city, in the suburbs or in one of the city’s many parks, there really is no excuse, always scoop the poop. Members of the public can call 1800 251 500 and report the location, time and date and the relevant Dublin local authority can take action on offending dog owners.

SDCC Mayor resigns from Labour Party

“...dismayed at the failure of Labour in

with Paul O'Connell goverment...” South Dublin County Council Mayor Dermot Looney has recently resigned from the Labour Party. In a statement released on his website, Mr Looney said that it had been clear to him for some time that “the Labour Party is no longer for me, nor am I for the Labour Party.” He insisted that over the last decade he had done his best to “advocate for policies and ideas rooted in the values of the left” which is why he entered politics. Giving his reasons for resigning, Mr Looney stated: "Over the last three (years), I have been dismayed at the failure of Labour in Government to advance these values and ideas, and I am equally concerned at the long-term outlook for these politics in the party." He also said he intends to contest the local elections in May as an independent candidate. A spokesman for the Labour Party said the party had been notified of the resignation, and added: "In 2011 the people of Ireland put Labour in government to fix the country. Nobody said it was going to be easy, but it is now clear that we are making real progress. It's not about those public representatives who have quit the party. It's about those who have had the courage to stick with it despite the fact that some very tough decisions had to be made." Looney joins a growing list of former Labour TDs and Councillors who have resigned from the party since it entered Government in 2011.

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n Dublin Zoo welcomed over 1 million visitors for a third consecutive year. The Zoo is celebrating one of the most exciting arrivals of 2013, a male southern white rhinoceros calf. The newborn is mother Ashanti’s third calf and is another significant success for Dublin Zoo as part of the European Endangered Species Programme.

engage in conversation en Français. Whether you know the basics or you are advanced, all are welcome to join in and take part in our morning of parler français. Wednesday 10:30 - 11:30 Irish conversation Tea and coffee for people who want to engage in conversation as Gaeilge. All are welcome to join in for a cupán tae and cúpla focail. Thursday 10:30 – 11:30 Genealogy

Are you interested in finding your heritage? We will put you on the right path to finding your family’s past and tracing your roots over a cup of tea or coffee.

Friday 10:30-11:30 Photography Whether you are experienced or just like taking photos bring along your camera and get tips on how to capture the perfect image, while enjoying a cup of tea or coffee.  Everyone welcome – just drop in any morning!


3

The Informer

WIN A PAIR OF TICKETS TO

SUPER TROUPERS THE MUSIC OF ABBA

WITH THE RTÉ CONCERT ORCHESTRA Attention ABBA fans, this is one concert you do not want to miss! The RTÉ Concert Orchestra, Andy O'Callaghan and Celebration Singers have been responsible for some of the rowdiest nights in the National Concert Hall. On Wednesday March 5th, due to phenomenal demand, they are bringing the hugely popular SUPER TROUPERS concert back to the National Concert Hall. The insanely catchy music of ABBA, in great arrangements by Andy, performed in style by the RTÉ Concert Orchestra and a team of superb male and female vocalists, will once again have the audience singing along and dancing in the aisles. Feel free to dress up for a night of ABBA hits like Waterloo, Dancing Queen, Chiquitita, Mamma Mia!, Gimme Gimme Gimme, Voulez Vous and more. To be in with a chance to win one of three pairs of tickets to this concert, simply answer the question below: The famous duo responsible for writing many of ABBA’s hit songs was: a) Lerner & Loewe b) Rodgers & Hammerstein c) Benny & Björn If you’re not lucky enough to win tickets you can buy them from `11 - `38 from 01 417 0000 or nch.ie Answers by e-mail only to competition@informer.ie Please include your contact number. Closing date for entries 15th February 2013.

Winners of the Hollywood Rhapsody competition: Joe McKeown; Breda Scanlan; Vanessa Burke

Dublin Informer

Editor: Niall Gormley • Address: Unit 38, Northwood Court, Santry, Dublin 9 01 813 8786 • news@informer.ie • www.informer.ie Sales Director: Declan Keane • Mobile: 087 9145073 For Advertising Enquiries, please contact: Email: sales@informer.ie • Telephone: 01 813 8786

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4

Green Scene

New Year's Resolutions

I wasn’t going to make any New Year’s resolutions this year – my decision to be slim and fit never makes it to the second of January – but the Editor wanted some, and what the Editor wants, the Editor gets. (Damn right. Editor.) So here are my green resolutions for 2014. Maybe we can check back in December and see how I did. I’ve reached a point in my life when I don’t have the time and energy to save the whole planet all by myself – that particular torch will have to be picked up by others with more youth and energy. Instead, this year, I’m going to get to know my locality better So I’m going to walk more – in my garden, down the road, on the local beach, through the local fields and woods – and I’m going to notice and learn about what I see. I’ll take my camera and bird and flower books with me. I’m also going to try and find out more about what my local community has to offer – as a runner in, even of many years standing, I know that I’m still missing out on a wealth of local knowledge, skill and services. So that will mean local shopping in smaller local shops, and taking the time to chat as I shop to find out what is locally made or locally grown. Of course I like to produce a lot of my own vegetables and flowers, but I want to make sure I fill in the gaps with what it locally produced and seasonal. Yes, the range is contracted at Christmas, but if we encourage local growers they will grow a wider range for a longer season – pop down to

Temple Bar on a Saturday and see the huge range of home grown veg from MacNally’s Family Farm. I’m going to spend more time in my local library – not only are my bookshelves full to overflowing but they have a great community notice board. There are a lot of community groups I haven’t explored and probably many more I’ve never heard of. Including local thrift shops – not only do they do a brilliant job of recycling but they are often another good place to find out what is going on in the community. And if you are helping the environment and your pocket by turning down your thermostat maybe you can find a couple of new sweaters there. Or old ones that can be radically redesigned into something a bit different to really show off to your friends. There are some great ideas on YouTube. And of course YouTube will also teach you how to maintain and repair home appliances. Part of reducing is deciding whether you really need to buy something new. An old fashioned local hardware shop will give great advice on how easy it is likely to be to repair something and how to keep tools in good conditions. And if something is too complicated to repair at home they are usually the people who know where you can get it mended. When I moved to Dublin, back at the dawn of time, it was a city of villages, full of local shops, craftspeople and expertise. Let’s value those that survive and the young people that are giving them new life.

The Informer

By Kathy Marsh, Sonairte Green snippets… Green snippets… Green snippets… Energy use fell by 4.6% in 2012 while the economy grew While the economy showed modest growth in 2012, Ireland’s energy use fell 4.6% according to the annual Energy in Ireland (2013) report published by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI). Almost one fifth of Irish electricity now comes from renewable sources, cutting around €300 million from Ireland’s fossil fuel imports last year. Electricity generated from renewables has increased eightfold since 1990. Chief Executive of SEAI Brian Motherway said: “The energy productivity of Ireland’s economy has been improving steadily over recent years, with progress in all sectors.. We still import 85% of our energy and this bill grew to €6.5 billion in 2012. This underlines the need to move from imported fossil fuels to indigenous renewables, and to achieve further efficiency gains.” “The typical Irish home now emits 40% less CO2 than was the case 20 years ago. But we need to achieve even greater savings with further investment in energy upgrades, not only in our homes but in all buildings." The report also states that: • Energy use fell in all sectors since 2007, with transport down 27%, industry 13% and buildings 16%. • Since 2007, Ireland’s economy contracted by 7.3%, while energy demand fell by 19% and related CO2 emissions fell by 21%. • Average CO2 emissions for new cars fell by 24% since 2007 and are now lower than the

required EU target. • Provisional figures show that Ireland will meet its greenhouse gas emissions target for the Kyoto period 2008 – 2012.

Single charger for notebook computers will reduce e-waste Each year billions of external chargers are shipped globally. Power supplies for notebooks weigh typically around 300 but sometimes up to 600 grams. They are generally not usable from one computer to the next. Sometimes they get lost or break, leading to the discarding of computers that may still work perfectly well. It is estimated that the total e-waste related to all kinds of chargers exceeds half a million tons each year; basically the equivalent of 500 000 cars. This new International Electrotechnical Commission Technical Specification covers critical aspects of external chargers for notebook computers, their connector and plug, as well as safety, interoperability, performance and environmental considerations. The new IEC Technical Specification opens the way to a significant and very real reduction of e-waste related to power supplies and will allow consumers to use a single external charger with a wide range of notebook computers. This will also make it much easier for external chargers to be reused or replaced when needed. IEC work ensures that the charger is reliable and safe to use, and that it provides the required level of performance..

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6

The Informer

Ask the Treating colds Pharmacist There is a bewildering array of products to treat colds and flu. Most of them are heavily marketed and ads promising that this or that medicine is the best thing to knock colds and flu on the head are ubiquitous at this time of year. With dozens of products to choose from, how to decide what to buy? Despite the large number of products, most are based on some combination of just a few drugs to treat various symptoms of colds and flu. These include pain relievers (e.g. paracetamol), decongestants, cough suppressants and antihistamines to help relieve runny noses. Most flu treatments on the market contain paracetamol so it is important if taking more than one product to ensure that you are not overdosing on paracetamol, which can cause fatal liver damage. Uniflu, Benylin Day & Night, Benylin-4-Flu, Night Nurse and all the Lemsip range contain paracetamol. Decongestants help relieve stuffy noses and congested sinuses. The most common of these is a drug called pseudoephedrine, although phenylephrine is also sometimes used. Lemsip Sinus & Flu, and the products named above all contain a decongestant. Sudafed contains only a decongestant, while Sinutab, Solpa-Sinus and Suda-Plus also contain paracetamol. Nurofen Cold & Flu contains ibuprofen with a decongestant. Decongestants should generally be avoided by those with diabetes or heart disease (among other conditions) so always check with your pharmacist if you are on any other medication before taking these. Decongestants are effective at relieving congestion but less so for drying up a runny nose. Decongestants are also available as nasal sprays which work much quicker than tablets but are not suitable for use for more than a week. Antihistamines are contained in some cold and flu remedies to help dry up a runny nose, and they may also help with an irritating cough. However, they cause drowsiness and so may not be suitable if you are going to work. Non-sedating antihistamines are not very effective at drying up the nose when you have a cold. Products containing antihistamines include Benylin4-Flu, Actifed, Uniflu and Night Nurse. Benylin Day & Night contains nondrowsy tablets to take during the day with paracetamol and a decongestant, and then paracetamol/antihistamine combination to take at night. Some cough medicines also contain antihistamines. If you are coughing, you may need to take a separate cough medicine although some combination products will also help with a cough. Day Nurse contains a strong cough suppressant with a decongestant/paracetamol combination which is excellent for a dry cough. Benylin Cough & Cold Multirelief Tablets contain an expectorant to help loosen the phlegm of a chesty cough in addition to nasal relief.

With Eoin Meany Eoin Meany works as a pharmacist in McCabe's Pharmacy, Ridgewood Avenue, Swords.

If you have a question you would like answered for next issue, please send it by email to eoin@mccabespharmacy.com or by post to McCabe's Pharmacy, Ridgewood, Swords, Co. Dublin.

Disclaimer: The advice you have been given by the pharmacist should not be regarded as a clinically accurate diagnosis of any disease or a guarantee that a particular medicine is safe for you to take. The advice given is based solely on the limited amount of information provided and so should not be regarded as a substitute for a face to face consultation with a pharmacist, doctor or other health professional who is personally familiar with your medical history.

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The sky over Dublin with Conor Farrell, Astronomy Ireland

Gemini and the neutron stars We previously looked at Orion in the south east, and these evenings it’s very prominent in the southern sky: simply look for the three bright stars in a row and you are looking at Orion. To the upper-left of Orion, high up in the sky, you’ll be able to spot two bright stars called Castor and Pollux, near the bright planet Jupiter. These stars are in the constellation of Gemini (the Twins) and should be easily spotted from Dublin. In Greek mythology, Pollux was the son of Zeus, and Castor was the son of a Spartan king called Tyndareus. In ancient Babylonian astronomy, the two stars were known as the Great Twins: one being the king of the underworld and the other known as ‘The Mighty King’. The constellation of Gemini is located away from the galactic disc, so if you’re in a particularly dark location the constellation can be easy enough to see as there isn’t lots of stars in that region of the sky. A very faint star in Gemini, called Geminga, and too faint to be seen without giant professional telescopes, is a very unusual type of star called a ‘neutron star’. A neutron star is the leftover remnant of a cataclysmic

supernova explosion that tears a dying star apart. This type of star is so dense that a teaspoon of it would weigh as much as a mountain, and its mass is so great that it bends space and time around itself: if you were to look at it straight on, you would also be able to see part of the back of the star. The supernova that created Geminga is thought to have occurred about 300,000 years ago, and was relatively close to our own Solar System. In fact, tiny meteorites that may have come from the explosion itself have been found passing through the Solar System! You can get your equipment to scan the Dublin sky at nightskyoptics.com


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The Informer

Garden Growing With Gerry Norton Setting the scene for the new year

A very happy and healthy new year to all Informer readers. As I finalize this month’s piece in early January, the winds are starting to get angry and it’s time to batten down the hatches once again. Big winds and high seas have started to become a feature of our winter weather in particular and many put this down to global warming. So, what can we as ordinary citizens do to help? Very little I suspect as most of this global change is in the hands of big industry and is therefore beyond our control. Small steps

We can however try to help in some small way by recycling and by gardening sensibly. If your black bin is full ask a neighbour if they have some space in theirs, don’t just chuck it in the green bin. Otherwise store it in your garage-shed until the next time. Stop using harmful insecticides-herbicides to deal with a problem in your garden.

n Now is the time to get your lawn mower and other equipment serviced Rose Clear for example was rubber gloves and squish them! I reformulated to become Rose do it every few weeks and it works, Clear Ultra because it was no and it isn’t as horrible as it longer allowed by the powers- sounds. that-be to be used by gardeners Take it easy because of its chemical formulaThere isn’t a lot we can do at tion. Instead why not do your bit for this time of the year in the garden the planet and follow the advice except plan for the coming year. from one of our gardening national As the ground is sodden it’s best treasures, Helen Dillon. If you not to walk on your veg plot as have a problem with aphids, ie. you will compact the soil. green or black fly, put on some Have a think about what worked

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or didn’t work last year in the garden not only in the veg plot but also in the borders and why not try something new this year? Seed catalogues are abundant at the moment. My usual favourites would be Seed Savers in Clare and the Organic Centre in Leitrim. A new addition this year is a range of seeds including some very unusual ones from Green Vegetable Seeds which operates out of Milkwood Farm, also in Leitrim. This is the enterprise and home of well known author and vegetable guru, Klaus Laitenberger and family. Klaus has a black tomato in his catalogue called ‘Indigo Rose’ which was originally bred in Oregon State University. It contains ‘Anthocyanins’ which is an antioxidant known to have health benefits as do all tomato varieties. A jet black tomato, I kid you not!. What’s next, blue bananas? Equipment overhaul

Now is the time to get your lawn mower and other equipment serviced as none of it is in use pres-

February Tips

A few quick tips for early February if the weather improves a small bit. • Avoid walking on your lawn as it’s very easy to do damage • Cover your veg plot with plastic which will warm up the soil • Prune trees now that they have lost their leaves and the desired shape is easy to see • Hard prune wisteria • Prune grape vines • Keep the birds well fed with sunflower seeds and peanuts. Never buy multipack seeds as the birds will not eat them and they will become a pest in your garden when they germinate on your lawn!

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10

Byrne Out

After being cooped up in the BBC, writing and recording his sitcom, Father Figure, for the past few months Jason Byrne is bursting for a chat. He comes to Galway this October to do what he does best. No words can do justice to this manic ball of comedic energy. The biggest selling comedian at every year’s Edinburgh Fringe has a way of bouncing onto the stage, picking some random object like a fire extinguisher, obsessing about it, pouring forth the torrent of pure comedy that has built up inside his head, making you laugh until you fart and then…. it’s over. An hour in his company feels like 10 minutes and you won’t be able to remember one joke, not even a funny line but you may well have split your sides. Arm whirls, facial scrunches and lots of props, plus skilful use of the front row as a collective feed, a technique he discovered by accident early on when he forgot to take on a couple of props. His brand of humour is hyper, light-footed but also uncontroversial, which gives it broad appeal. His air of stability would seem to have much to do with not straying far from his roots. “I just thought, right I should really move over soon enough [he is still ensconced in the Dublin area, now with his wife of a decade, Brenda McCreith]. I’m such a home boy and have so many mates and family in Ireland that I couldn’t make a decision until eventually I started to get used to the swing of it. And my dad always said, ‘Always stay where you’re from if you can, because that’ll be the best thing for your head’.”

Where did you grow up? I grew up in the foot hills of the Dublin mountains in a beautiful place called Ballinteer, it's gone now, and all that’s left is fields. What's your fondest memory of growing up in Ballinteer? We used to have street parties where half the locals dressed

as deers and the other as headlights, the headlights would chase the deers, it was all done so we’d have a good harvest that year. What was tradition in the Byrne household when you were a kid? To hand over the remote control to my Dad when he came home from work, then we’d get a basin of hot water, put dettol in it so he could soak his feet. He was like an Irish Jesus. How much time do you get to spend in Dublin? I'm there six months of the year, the other six I go around the world collecting money for the Irish government. When you get the time to relax in Dublin what's your favourite thing to do? I like to go to Dublin Zoo and lick the glass of the snake cages. I find it almost Zen-like, seen a monk doing it in Tibet. What do you think is the worst thing to come out of Ireland since you were born? Money. What is your favourite Irish saying? We’ll leave it there then. What's the most embarrassing thing you've put a member of your audience through? A cement mixer. You're very dramatised on stage, do you think this gives a better comedic show? Yes, I do think drama lends well to a comedic show. That’s the first time I have ever answered a question from the 1840’s.

The Informer

Jason Byrne Interview with Rachel Murray

What is the best thing about playing to an Irish audience compared with other places? The fact that they all think their funnier then you before you start. Congratulations on the success of your sitcom, 'Father Figure', is it something you'd like to do again? Boom, lets do it again !! What's your favourite television sitcom of all time? Fair city. Career wise, what are you least proud of? When I squashed a guy's pet mouse, it was in his pocket when he got up on stage. On a personal level what are you most proud of? Giving mouth-to mouth-to a guy's mouse that I squashed. It survived. Do you think social media is now an instrumental part of raising and maintaining an entertainer's profile? Yes, unfortunately. Three twitter follow recommendations? @thechickenshat… @carpetrubber… @parisflaptrop… I made these up, but I guarantee their used accounts. What does 2014 have in store for Jason Byrne the comedian? Riches beyond your widest dreams. Oh and a new haircut Who should buy your new dvd, 'Jason Byrne's Special Eye'? People with money only please.

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12

The Act

The Informer

With JJ Fleetwood

forums. This new self was not helpless and despairing like the offline me. He was filled with a I remember lying on my back like this, hands steely resolve to do something, to strike back. He behind my head, was when I was twelve, the started his own blog in which he vented his anger rough stumps left after newly-cut hay pressing and frustration at “The System”. He attracted into my back, the sun warm on my skin, dazzled many like-minded followers. by beads of blue and white shining through the Offline, life continued as normal. I looked after holes in the straw weaving of the hat perched my elderly parents and was a good, caring uncle just above my nose, deliciously tired after a hard to my nieces and nephews. I continued to look for day working on the farm. Twenty years later I work but grew less hopeful by the day. Meanwhile am lying on a hard bed under garish prison my cyber-self grew in confidence and he lights staring at the dull, off-white ceiling. The eventually learned that angry words were not tiredness I feel now is joyless, empty. enough. I get on OK with my fellow inmates but have “You can’t make an omelette without breaking no real friends here. My background is not eggs” he wrote in his blog. An idea took hold of typical for a prisoner. For many years I worked him and wouldn’t let go. He would act. It took for a large bank. I was competent enough, I him over two years of planning and preparation once glimpsed a work report that described me before he was ready to strike a blow against the as “shy, soft-spoken, hardworking, reliable, enemy. disciplined”, but I was never a high-flier. Then The police never understood that it wasn’t the came the economic crash and I lost my job, while real me that did it, it was my cyber-self. His targets others – less hardworking but more selfpromoting - were kept on. I was tossed onto the were the enemy, the establishment. He had to strike a blow. He believed that the revolution must trash heap. I worked hard to find another happen and he had to play his part. The people in position, but only found sporadic temporary work. I grew frustrated as I was turned down for that bank boardroom weren’t innocent civilians for him, they were the ones that keep us all in job after job. But, for the sake of my parents, I chains. continued to maintain my usual quiet, reliable Except the little girl. How could he have known facade. that a bank director would pick that day, of all My alter-ego was born in cyberspace. He days, to bring his six-year old daughter into work. began to read about how governments, the She was sitting just a few feet away from the banks and the giant corporations control the suitcase bomb when it exploded. I just wish that world and make slaves of us, the ordinary they had never shown me her photograph. Every people. He vented his anger, along with many time I close my eyes I see her face. other like-minded people, in various blogs and

Graham Connor's Movie Advice All is Lost HHHHH

Directed by J.C. Chandor. Starring Robert Redford. A sailor on a solo voyage finds that a stray cargo container has pierced the hull of his boat. He must now struggle against the elements to survive. January is a blessed month for film fans as all the Oscar hopefuls try hitting the big screens across the world. All is Lost certainly is an Oscar contender but even if it wins nothing, All is Lost is a fabulous film. Robert Redford, who has been relatively quiet of late, is the only actor in this film, he is in nearly every frame and so he literally is this film. Of course, with no supporting cast, he has no one to talk to and so about eight lines of dialogue are spoken throughout the film. But it is full of sound and action, the waves and the storm and the howling wind are his supporting cast and it pulls the greatest performance of his career from Redford. All is Lost is truly a fabulous and haunting film, a triumph of storytelling.

Advice: Essential viewing

12 Years a Slave HHHHH

Directed by Steve McQueen. Starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender and Brad Pitt. It is 1841 and Solomon Northup, a gifted musician, is lured to Washington under the promise of work. Instead he is sold into slavery. This is his story. Anyone familiar with the work of director Steve McQueen will know two things, 1) his films are powerful and often shocking and 2) he casts Michael Fassbender, a lot. So far the pair have worked on Hunger and Shame but this, their latest film, is by far the best, especially for Fassbender who plays an evil and complicated man. He does not stray into cartoon villain territory, he is just a bad man, wicked to the core. While Fassbender proves the shade to this film, Ejiofor (of Love Actually fame) is the light. He is fantastic as Northup and provides the true heart of 12 Years a Slave, never bowing under pressure of carrying a film of this weight. It is often bruising and brutal film as it does not shy away from reality of a slave’s plight. 12 Years a Slave may only highlight the plight of one individual during a time when millions died but it is a sobering tale that never once sets foot in the arena of sentimentality. It is not a date night film but a film that should be seen by everyone.

Advice: Must see

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14

Dublin Advice

The Informer

NLP: A new tool for success in business

NLP in the Workplace

Colm Murphy, Executive Coach and Master NLP Practitioner

Communication: One of the crucial aspects in any organisation is communication and NLP uniquely, places the emphasis on the receiver. You can learn to deliver the message the way the listener would prefer the communication be delivered. Staff are enabled to calibrate the unconscious non-verbal signals of the other person, allowing them to tune in to their inner dialogue.

Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) is a behavioural approach which allows us to harness the power of the unconscious mind. It allows us to understand what is going on inside us and what happens when we deal with others. NLP operates on the basic assumption that reality is subjective. That is, instead of assuming that there is an objective, single reality out there that we all participate in, it focuses on how each individual experiences and perceives reality on the inside. Therefore, instead of 'facts', NLP deals with personal beliefs and perceptions and is more concerned with what works than with what is 'true'. Successful companies realise that true competitive advantage lies in their people. Effective communication is vital to the success of an individual, whether it be communication with the team, clients and customers, senior managers, regulatory bodies or the media. Poor communication within the workplace creates tensions and destroys personal and business relationships. Competence in NLP communication techniques gives the staff a quantum leap in their ability to work with, understand and motivate other people, both individually and in groups. Since the cornerstone of NLP is respecting the other person’s map of the world, this mutual respect improves wellbeing and team spirit. Conflicts can be quickly resolved, by means of user-friendly and mutually respecting solutions. Staff can begin to look at things more holistically – that is, they can view themselves as part of the larger system that

Negotiations: Develop outcome-based thinking. Sharing and introducing the preferred outcome in a way that can be easily understood by others, greatly enhances to the effectiveness of a meeting. they participate in. An effective NLP-enabled manager leads by making others want to follow, by encouraging a culture of self-motivation in the workforce. How it Works

NLP helps us develop a spectrum of skills that are invaluable in dealing with ourselves and others.

Feedback: Learn to use your senses to get feedback for how you are doing. Stay in the present moment and look at what is actually going on around you, not what you’d like to be happening, or whatever is happening in your daydream. Flexibility: Stay flexible – the more options you have for action, the more chances you have to succeed. Remember, you can’t keep doing what you’ve always done and expect different results. Keep yourself flexible, reflective and always ready to change, until you find what works.

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The Informer

20

Game Reaction with Denis Murphy

Gran Turismo in years, and the perfect swansong for the PS3. Game Reaction: 9/10

Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus Developer: Insomniac Games • Platform: PS3

Gran Turismo 6 Developer: Polyphony Digital • Platform: PS3 After a number of sequels and spin-offs, Sony is openly trying to recapture the glory days of the original Gran Turismo, and with a massive host of tracks, cars, challenges and trophies, Grand Turismo 6 does exactly what it intended to do. Gran Turismo 6 goes all out in the features and presentation department. The first noticeable selling point is the fact that there's an overall of 1200 cars to drive here. From older sports cars like the Alpine A110 1600, to the more modern rides like the Pagani Zonda R '09 and everything in between, the amount of usable cars here is staggering. The handling of the cars themselves in here is expertly done too. This general improvement on Gran Turismo 5 can especially be felt on tight turns, in which you can really feel your cars suspension take a beating. From slight bumps in the road to hard direct hits from other competitors, the car controls in Gran Turismo 6 are next to none. Fact. Polyphony Digital have created the best

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The Ratchet and Clank series has always been a headlining title for Sony since the days of the PS2, but the latest title in the series, Into the Nexus, is going under the radar. I can't imagine why though, as Into the Nexus is just as good as- if not betterthan rest of the titles in the franchise. Into the Nexus plays upon the same basic, simple yet effective formula as what came before it, and blends exploration, action and adventure. However, one excellent addition to gameplay is the focus on gravity, and the manipulation of it. Now the player can explore otherwise unreachable areas as well as jump to and from different platforms, often leading to you viewing the game world completely upside-down. Now only does this add a great visual appeal, but also opens up some fantastic gameplay opportunities- both of which Insomniac Games explores to the fullest. Boasting new fantastic and fun weaponry, superb 2D sections and level design that is next to none, Ratchet and Clank: Into the Nexus just may be the best overlooked game all year. Don't let it pass you by! Game Reaction: 8/10


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