Heh heh heh.
I do find it kind of insane that I will be 36 before I've had a chance to vote in my second presidential election. I was 15 in 1990, and so couldn't vote in that one. I voted for Mary Banotti in 1997 (did I ever think I'd vote Fine Gael? No, I did not. But I'd rather have voted for someone who was a liberal feminist, whatever her party affiliations, than Adi Roche, who may have been the Labour candidate but who was also an enormous flake). But little did I know that I wouldn't get a chance to vote again for nearly 15 years.
Also, Mary McAleese? Why? Seriously, why? Last year I interviewed the head of the German school out in Dundrum, and while I was waiting for him I flicked through the school magazine, which was distributed in German-language schools throughout the world. It contained an account of a visit from Mary McAleese to the school, written by the principal himself, and it enthusiastically informed Germanic ex-pats everywhere (in German, which made it somehow funnier) that Mary McAleese was "so beloved in Ireland, that she is almost like a pop star!" Which was bizarre and amusing, of course, but it was also genuinely bewildering - I mean, I can understand the use of hyperbole, but usually hyperbole is in some way influenced by actual reality. If Mary McAleese aroused any feelings in anyone, ever, apart from vague approval or (in my case) vague dislike, it might have made more sense, but of all the people to describe as being beloved by the populace.... I just don't understand! Even Red Bertie, the Socialist's Friend, is more beloved than her, which may be a sad reflection on our nation. But nevertheless, I can't imagine either of them being pursued down the street by screaming hysterical crowds like something out of A Hard Day's Night.