Welcome to AEC’s countdown of the highs and lows of the last 12 months.

January = LOW

For many of us, 2018 began with a hangover. Mine began at 4.00, having to tell a lovely 18 year old girl in McDonald’s that her boob was sticking out and it was in danger of being dipped into a tub of curry sauce. But  it wasn’t all doom and gloom, at least not for the politicians of the country – who gave themselves a 3,900 euro pay rise in January. Happy feckin new year lads. This would actually be the first of two increases that the lucky turds would get in 2018. I got a 60 cents  increase this year. Still though, I don’t have to listen to Matty McGrath waffling on about abortion and what he’s entitled to. I suppose 90k is enough to listen to that. I do feel sorry for the TD’s, they look awfully squeezed in those seats.

February = HIGH

Remember this. First is was bad, then it was good, but then we got off work and then it was bit boring. The coldest weather like ever  turned Ireland into a scene from the Day After Tomorrow. Most of us got three days off work  and had a marathon of all the movies nominated for Oscars. Some of you nutters reading this however – went out to the supermarket and bought  ALL the bread. Like literally, all of it. The nation literally had no bread. Despite this, the cabin fever was kinda cool as the nation bounded together and had literally no clue what to do. Let’s not mention the chavs that robbed Lidl’s in Jobstown. 

March = HIGH

Jesus Died for our sins ( ah wasn’t he great) and because of this, we get chocolate eggs on the day he came from the dead. Which is where the inspiration for Willy Wonka and Night of The Living Dead comes from. But, on the day he died, we are not really supposed to drink and we are most definitely supposed to eat fish. I love Catholicism. Apparently for Mary’s birthday – you’re supposed to swing a cat around anti-clockwise – hence the expression. This year, however, was the first year in over 90 years where Ireland allowed pubs to open and serve alcohol. So, it was basically like any other normal day except instead of people saying thank God its Friday, they were saying, I can’t believe its Good Friday. I don’t remember what I did on this day, so I know it was definitely good and probably involved nudity.  Sadly, this liberal development in our drinking calendar, prevented the traditional Holy Thursday scramble in the off-licence. This has led to the bizarre reality that keeping the pubs open has actually reduced alcohol consumption.

April = LOW

April marked a dark and sad month for Ireland with,  perhaps  the lowest point of the year. At the end of the month it was revealed that over 200 woman who had been tested for cervical cancer and given the all clear, had in fact been misdiagnosed. This tragedy exposed a serious flaw in our health system and the privatisation of vital services within the HSE. It’s also raised several questions about accountability. The repercussions of this error are still being seen and discussed in the media and will scare the lives of those affected for years to come.  

May = HIGH

In 2017,  the Oxford dictionary defined the word of the year as “youthquake” – an awakening of conscience  within the youth to campaign and achieve social change. Perhaps the best example of a youthquake was the result of the 8th referendum to change the constitution.  2.1 million people voted and of that 90% of voters 24 or younger voted Yes. And most of them managed to get off Snapchat for 5 seconds to actually do it – which is just great. Many were shocked to learn that you can’t take selfies in the polling station but were quickly calmed by the final episodes of RuPaul Drag Race.

June = HIGH

The world record for the most amount of skinny dippers in the world was broken in South Dublin during the month of June as Ireland baked in one of the hottest months on record. Although, no offence, looking at the images online, it should probably just be called …dipping.  The heat saw bottles of suncream fly off selves, as a mass exodus from the pub, as people chose to drink in their gardens. Cava anyone?

July = HIGH

Meanwhile – across the globe a completely different water activity was taking place. Jim Warny, one of the heroic drivers who saved the young boys in a cave in Thailand returned home. Jim is based in County Clare and was one of the key drivers who journeyed into the water filled cave to save the stranded football team and their coach. The 12 boys were trapped in a dark, damp cave for 2 weeks and captured the global media’s attention. Thankfullly, they all made it out alive. During the two weeks, the coach – a practising monk, thought them the value of meditation and remaining calm. Feckin hell – they’re amazing. I would have completely lost it. In fact anyone I’ve ever met would have completely lost it. Monks are great.  

August = LOW

Maybe monks are even better than priests.  El Papa Benedict chose Ireland as part of his summer vacation this year and arrived with an entourage that took over the Phoenix Park. The Pope was here to promote this latest Album – God- A Collection of Hits. He did two live concerts but due to bad weather, poor sound quality and a lot of people not really believing in God – only about 30% of the estimated crowd managed to show up. The event also clashed with the World Meeting of Families – which sounds cool but if you think about it…. it really isn’t.

September = LOW

On September 22nd a sit down protest was organised on O’Connell Bridge to highlight what is inarguably the defining social problem of 2018 – almost 10,000 people homeless in the country and the figure hasn’t been falling down.  Three days later – Sinn Féin tabled a motion of no confidence in Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy which was defeated in the Dáil by 59 votes to 49 votes with 29 abstentions.  It’s depressing and obviously not a problem that will fix itself over night – but it is becoming harder to harder to see what the government is actually doing. I’d happily sit in front of oncoming traffic again, to get the problem sorted.

October = LOW

The Irish people got the tits bored off them during the Presidential Election 2018 as President Higgins battled a bunch of fruity flavoured pop-tarts to regain his position. Which he did. Demand for Higgins’s tea cosy’s rocketed and the public struggled to understand just what the other candidates were going on about. You know it’s never a good sign when the only interesting thing in an election is a little bit of racism. Casey’s ill-worded comments caused mild outrage in the public but, debatably, not a lot, as he came second.  Still the Late Late show debate was something horrible and awkward that we could all look at with a grimace.

November = HIGH

Couldn’t possible include any list without El Cheeto himself. Look at him – he’s such a ride. The sexist president of the Divided States was scheduled to visit Ireland in November but sadly it was called off – almost as quickly as it was announced. Protesters were disappointed, as many of them had chosen and polished their rocks – ready to take aim. The far right movement was disappointed that they didn’t get to see their Messiah ( in fairness we don’t really have a far-right – it’s just Justin Barrett really). Trump cancelled his plans for unknown reasons. He probably realised there are a surprising amount of Mexicans in Dublin and given our history of the Titanic, we’re not the best at building things – so why bother really.

December = LOW

Like all good Irish stories, this list starts badly and ends badly. So recently David Attenbourgh ( pause for respect) gave a speech at a climate change event in Poland. To summarise his words – WE ARE FUCKED…. ROYALLY…. UP THE BUM BUM. EVERYTHING THAT YOUR DOING NOW – STOP – STOP –STOP. Those weren’t his exact words (shockingly) but you get the idea. In a recent E.U report, Ireland was listed as being the worst offender for environmental damage and for not meeting it’s quote and environmental responsibilities. I’ve no idea how this happened. I throw all my plastic in the bin and I’m fine. It never comes back. Still though – this fact was made worst because  it’s the second year in a row. Come on Ireland – the only list we should be at the bottom of is fashion and style.