Johnno was there yesterday with his 165 new chums for the first day’s fun and games of the 30th Dail. At some point in the evening (it must have been part of the extended news coverage) there was an interview with him that had been recorded, presumably earlier in the week, in Claremorris. It was only a short piece but in it he mentioned his dual mandate, as bainisteoir and TD, and he proclaimed that holding down the two roles would be no problem, given that in the past he was well used to juggling his two positions as manager and teacher. Hmmm . . .
I suppose you can see where he’s coming from, in that there are similarities between the respective roles of teacher and TD – long holidays, working in an environment where a high percentage of the individuals are of the immature and boorish variety – but I have to admit that I’m not fully convinced. It was no coincidence, to my mind, that Johnno’s political success in the general election was coupled with the abject failure we witnessed in Salthill. It is also surely going to be the case that the ongoing demands which form part of everyday life as a public representative will leave him with far less time – including less head space – for football than he had when he was in the classroom. I hope I’m wrong but I can’t help feeling that Fine Gael’s gain could well turn out to be our loss.