Eoin Butler: writer, journalist and Mayoman of the Year

Tripping Along The Ledge


Published: Evening Herald, January 2010

The Liberty Belle

33 Francis Street, Dublin 8

liberty belle
It’s a wet and freezing Thursday night and Thomas Street is teeming with pretty, young things raucously celebrating… something or other. When you’re pretty and young, I suppose, you don’t really need an excuse.

We duck down Francis Street and stick our heads in the door of the Liberty Belle. There are football scarves hanging from the ceiling and a load of old drunks codgering at the bar. Read the rest of this entry »

The Old Stand

“No pint bottles of Bulmers?” The barman shakes his head. Tommy is shocked. I’d consider the Old Stand one of the city’s better bars: Clean. Quiet. Well run. But my old friend, in Dublin for a birthday tonight, knows better. “No pint bottles,” he declares. “No class.”

This is the same guy, incidentally, who, to the consternation of his wife, served Buckfast at their wedding reception. His opinions on these matters, then, aren’t necessarily definitive. Read the rest of this entry »

Published: Evening Herald, January 2010


25 Dawson Street, Dublin 2

Dearbhla & Sean - GUESS fashion show September  2007
“Daniel O’Donnell goes to funerals,” announces Aidan, out of the blue. Before my brain has had time to transmit a warning signal to my mouth, I respond. Huh? “Seriously man,” he says. “Daniel O’Donnell reads the death notices. Turns up to the funeral homes. Presses the flesh. Like a politician does.” Read the rest of this entry »

Published: Evening Herald, March 2010

The Bankers

Trinity Street, Dublin 2

the bankers
“Jaysus, that Kathryn Bigelow is some woman!” exclaims Aidan. He throws the newspaper down in front of me. “You would, wouldn’t you Butler? Go on. It’ll go no further than the pair of us…”

“She’s not bad looking. But she’s old enough to be your mother!” “It’s mad that, isn’t it?” he shakes his head. “Although, of course, my mother has had eleven children, so it’s not exactly a fair comparison.” Read the rest of this entry »

Published: Evening Herald, February 2010


14 Fade Street, Dublin 2

fade street
“I’m Going to Die…. And I Can’t Wait!” is the dubious headline on this week’s edition of Take a Break magazine. To be honest, I kinda understand how the woman feels. It’s Thursday evening. And I’ve been browsing the magazine rack in Spar for what seems like hours now. What in the hell is Aidan doing?

He’s at the counter negotiating a delicate purchase is what. “I’ll have twenty Benson & Hedges,” he tells the young shop assistant, “a pack of chewing gum and…” (He lowers his voice conspiratorially.) “A packet of tmm-mms.” The shop assistant squints. “A what?” Aidan whispers it again. “A packet of tampons.” Read the rest of this entry »

Published: Evening Herald, February 2010

Shebeen Chic

4 South Great George's Street, Dublin 2

Back in the mid-90s I hitched a lift to Galway with a young businessman who drove a shiny black Mercedes. His job, he told me, involved rummaging around the attics and outhouses of rural Ireland and retrieving whatever rubbish he could find: old bicycles, obsolete household utensils, even discarded road signs.

Why, I asked him? He told me about a craze for Irish-themed bars that was sweeping Britain and continental Europe. Bar owners abroad were paying ridiculous prices for the kind of crap generally found gathering dust in our grandparents’ garages. Foot-pedal sewing machines were being used as tables in Bradford; High Nellies were hanging from tavern walls in Bratislava. Read the rest of this entry »