Chorus and Verse
Larry Kirwan
Chorus and Verse Blog
Posted: May 22, 2012 11:59 pm (-05:00)
Larry Kirwan
Musician/Novelist/Activist - Leader of Black 47
Gunfight at Rosie's Corral

What a thrill to meet one's critics for lunch, especially if they're charming, mysterious, and you donít have to pick up the bill.

Some months back a finely worded letter was published in these pages regarding a column of mine on Iran; while magnanimously allowing that I was entitled to my political leanings, the writer pointedly questioned my grasp of the facts and general sanity.

Since I too have often been concerned for the latter I was not without empathy for this scribe, Mr. John McEnroe, noted lawyer and father of the tennis great.

Soon thereafter, that mover and shaker in Democratic circles and counsel to the mighty, Mr. John Connorton, let me know that Mr. McEnroe would welcome an opportunity to make my acquaintance. Whereupon Mr. Ray O'Hanlon, our inestimable editor, offered to attend as my second, and a date was set for lunch at Rosie O'Grady's midtown saloon.

Mr. McEnroe, no doubt aware of the value of a grand entrance, appeared wearing a ten-gallon hat that would have not looked out of fashion at the OK Corral.

He eyed me speculatively from behind shades. I must admit I'm often nervous in the company of lawyers, especially with the clock ticking. Thus, much of the early banter went over my head as I wrestled with the cost of a consultation with these two legal titans. An hour of their combined time could surely cost as much as an evening with a top-class courtesan.

Mr. O'Hanlon was in top form as he recounted the Echo's covert strategy in endorsing Senator Obama in the last presidential election; until Mr. Connorton inquired innocently enough who the Echo might favor this coming November.

As the smile drained from Mr. OíHanlonís face, I ventured to suggest that the Echo's readership was not as conservative as was generally imagined and that many nuns, radical and otherwise, were avid readers of my column.

To which Mr. McEnroe baldly stated that he would vote for anyone but Barack Obama Ė with a toss of his leonine head he seemed to suggest that even a commie, such as I, would be preferable.

I voiced my concern that a Romney presidency could be fraught with peril since this economic genius had stated that on no account would he have bailed out the American car industry. Such inaction, I postulated, could have wiped out the states of Michigan and Ohio.

Mr. McEnroe gazed at me in steely silence until I began to wonder if he was familiar with the areas in question or merely employing a lawyerly stratagem.

I forget his precise answer, engaged as I was in calculating that sixty seconds of this eyeballing could cost a client eight or more dollars.

Ever the provocateur, Mr. Connorton tossed in the occasional acerbic aside to keep the discourse lively, and after he had polished off a giant Turkey Club murmured that a good dessert had healed many political wounds.

As they tucked in with gusto to Rosie's concoctions I marveled at these three gentlemen and their lack of any cholesterol problems and wondered how many bowls of oatmeal I'd need to consume to counter my own whipped cream transgression.

Buoyed by this sugar rush Mr. McEnroe was tossing off jokes, salty and otherwise, when Mr. Connorton confided that the bill had already been settled and he must hasten to "a board meeting". All three of us smiled knowingly and watched this éminence grise glide off, no doubt to sort out the Secret Service's brothel problems or the transfer of Madam Clinton from State to the Vice-Presidency.

There was nothing for it - I girded my loins and inquired just what I had written about Iran that had so upset Mr. McEnroe, to which he breezily replied Ė "Everything. It was all wrong!"

Thereupon, Mr. McEnroe strode off into the sunset, his ten-gallon hat cocked jauntily while Mr. O'Hanlon comforted himself with the thought that he had five months grace before hazarding a presidential endorsement.

I, however, had been struck by an epiphany - with a free lunch a month, I could silence five critics before November while lessening my living expenses. Does anyone know Your Man From Pearl River's phone number?

Larry Kirwan

Larry Kirwan is the leader, singer/guitarist and composer for the Irish-American rock band Black 47. Black 47 has released thirteen CDs for both major and independent labels. The band has appeared on Leno, Letterman and O'Brien and been profiled in most major magazines and newspapers in the US. Their album, Trouble in the Land, was recently voted the "top album of the decade" by readers of Bankers and Gangsters, Black 47's latest CD, was released in March 2010 by UFO Music.

Kirwan has also recorded Kilroy Was Here and Keltic Kids as solo efforts.

He has written twelve plays and musicals, five of which are collected in the book Mad Angels. Liverpool Fantasy, his best-known play, has been produced Off-Broadway and at the Dublin Theatre Festival. He has also written a novel version of Liverpool Fantasy (translated into Japanese, Spanish and Greek), a memoir - Green Suede Shoes - and Livin' in America, a collection of songs and stories. Rockin' The Bronx, his latest novel, was recently published in the US and UK/Ireland.

Kirwan hosts and produces Celtic Crush for SiriusXM Satellite Radio and writes a weekly column for the Irish Echo.

A political activist, he has long been involved in Irish and American causes.

He is currently working on a new novel about the aftermath of 9/11 and a musical with Thomas Keneally of Schindler's List fame.

Connect with Larry Kirwan on:
Black 47 Official Website Black 47 Official Website
Black 47 on Facebook Black 47 on Facebook
Black 47 on Twitter Black 47 on Twitter
©2012, Chorus and Verse
Recent Blogs By Larry Kirwan [ CLICK FOR FULL LIST ]
Culture Of Connectivity
Martin Hayes & Iarla Ó'Lionáird
Individual Versus Community
A Nun's Story
Gunfight at Rosie's Corral
Alexander Hamilton
Unlucky Green
Brian Mór - A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
Goin' To Kansas City
Staff Sergeant Robert Bales
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