Seachtain na Gaeilge ends today, two days after National Day. One thing to say to RTÉ is that they’ve always been a tireless champion of Irish, which – to quote Flann O’Brien – often wasn’t “popular or profitable”.
Today, fortunately, compared to before, the language is thriving with younger generations mercifully free from the silly post-colonial problems of their predecessors. And RTÉ has delivered plenty of good Irish content over the last seven days, starting with the ever-buoyant podcast style Beo ar Eigean (Radio 1, Sat 8 p.m.).
As usual, the chat scattered in a hundred directions. Siún Ní Dhuinn, Áine Ní Bhreisleáin and Sinéad Ní Uallacháin all talk for miles; The show feels like it’s in the middle of a casual bar chat between three smart, funny people.
Sunday Miscellaneous (Radio 1, 9.10am) with some Irish contributions including a bilingual poem (A Citeal/The Kettleby Catherine Foley) and a typically intelligent, provocative essay by Manchán Magan – a man who has done as much good for the Gaeilge as anyone in the last 30 years – on words found in West Kerry’s Corca Dhuibhne Gaeltacht and not used anywhere else.
“Don’t expect to find these words in your dictionary,” he said. “These are savages, untamed. They were never recorded by a lexicographer. This is the pure drop.”
Lyric’s also featured Irish The full score (Mon-Fri 1 p.m.) – Songs as Gaeilge for St. Patrick’s Day – and Sunday matinee (1pm), with Aedín Gormley using the Cúpla Focal and presenting some beautiful and fitting music: Siúil a Rúin, The Coolin, Oilean/Island, Na Tri Captaení Loinge and more. Even 2FM caught on to the program, Bláthnaid Treacy doing their annual hosting thing The national chart show (Fri 7pm) in Irish.
The business (Radio 1, Sat 10am) contributed with an entertaining and informative contribution on ‘How to bring Irish to the office’. Again Siún Ní Dhuinn – this time in her role as Digital Coordinator for Irish language content at RTÉ – and Alswyn Ní Aonghusa Ní Dhúill from the Gael Gals Podcast joined Richard Curran.
Amusingly, they mostly focused on putdowns and comebacks. “One of the best things about being an Irish speaker,” said Siún, “is the sheer number of putdowns we have. It’s very pejorative and very earthy.” Some of the older terms, she added, “definitely wouldn’t be appropriate for today…or for Saturday morning airing!”
She gave us “Leathdhuine”: a dim-witted person, someone who is “messed up”. Alswyn suggested “rógaire” (knife), “blaggard” (troublemaker) and “spaisteoir” (clown). Try some of these in a meeting the next time the boss proposes something ridiculous.
https://www.independent.ie/entertainment/radio/irish-language-content-blows-a-gael-force-across-rte-41463578.html Irish language content blows a Gaelic might across RTÉ