Summer is over, the evenings are drawing in, the roads are again clotted with traffic, and, if you were not sufficiently depressed, the country’s worst journalist is back in the saddle. Yes, Orna Mulcahy surpasses even chick-lit author “Kate” Holmquist and R�is�n Ingle in the production of the most vacuous prose appearing in The Irish Times. Readers of the paper’s Saturday magazine–so lightweight it makes the Guardian’s G2 supplement seem like the TLS–might be familiar with Mulcahy’s sideline, the series of vignettes of Ireland’s monied classes, Irish Lives. Mulcahy broke new ground in this space-filling genre by eschewing any pretense to satire, preferring to evoke the atmosphere of a cosy bitch over a vat of Chardonnay.
But it as cheerleader of the Tulip Mania that is the Irish property boom that Mulcahy really has the chance to strut her stuff. In today’s Property section , Mulcahy gushes that for “The price of a good house in Dublin will get you over 120 rolling acres in Co Tipperary” But what exactly is the going rate of an acceptable-but-hardly-exceptional “good house” in the Hibernian metropolis these days? Well, the “advised minimum value” of the property that Mulcahy has decided to flog (I mean elucidate in an objective fashion) is �7 million, so expect to add another 2 or 3 mil to that figure.
Of course, for �7+ million you can’t expect the earth. As diplomatic as an estate agent with a maxed-out credt card, Mulcahy notes “The 242sq m (2,600sq ft) home is in need of some updating.” Oh, and “the prodigious lawn needs some attention”. I love that “prodigious”–it tells you that you’re reading Ireland’s paper of record and not a card in the window of SherryFitzGerald or Lisney’s.