Author Topic: Foreign appreciation of GAA?  (Read 15616 times)

30mog

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Foreign appreciation of GAA?
« on: August 09, 2013, 11:48:02 AM »
Hi

I am writing this from Sheffield.  I have no Irish ancestors, as far as I know.  So my only reason for liking GAA is sheer envy of your games, though I find football the more settling on my eye.  And if millions worldwide can adopt Manchester United or Chelsea then why shouldn't I adopt an Irish county in GAA?  Well actually, I already have, but more on that later.  A few years previously, I have taken exploratory day trips to Croke Park and Casements - was a bit too nervous to say too much to reveal my broad Yorkshire accent - was I worrying needlessly?  However, from next year I plan to take up the hobby more seriously.  I will mainly be an armchair fan with plenty of GAA available through Premier Sports and BBC2 NI in the UK.  Then subject to how the fixtures fall and reasonable travel costs a few trips over to Ireland are ON for 2014.  As are trips to London GAA - as a means to supporting the game closer to my front door.

Hoping for your positive comments.

PS. If you like Chelsea or Man.Utd. fair enough.  I wouldn't cross the road to watch them, unless Portsmouth were the opposition.  Born in bred in Sheffield who else would I support :)

deiseach

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Re: Foreign appreciation of GAA?
« Reply #1 on: August 09, 2013, 11:53:11 AM »
A few years previously, I have taken exploratory day trips to Croke Park and Casements - was a bit too nervous to say too much to reveal my broad Yorkshire accent - was I worrying needlessly?

Yes. In a world of increasingly global sporting brands, we're an insecure lot. If you told those around you where you were from, you'd be treated with all the excitement of the second coming of Jesus.

southdown

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Re: Foreign appreciation of GAA?
« Reply #2 on: August 09, 2013, 12:01:00 PM »
Im sure there will be a few AI semi final tickets knocking around, get to Holyhead and jump on the boat as a foot passenger

AZOffaly

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Re: Foreign appreciation of GAA?
« Reply #3 on: August 09, 2013, 12:08:47 PM »
Hi

I am writing this from Sheffield.  I have no Irish ancestors, as far as I know.  So my only reason for liking GAA is sheer envy of your games, though I find football the more settling on my eye.  And if millions worldwide can adopt Manchester United or Chelsea then why shouldn't I adopt an Irish county in GAA?  Well actually, I already have, but more on that later.  A few years previously, I have taken exploratory day trips to Croke Park and Casements - was a bit too nervous to say too much to reveal my broad Yorkshire accent - was I worrying needlessly?  However, from next year I plan to take up the hobby more seriously.  I will mainly be an armchair fan with plenty of GAA available through Premier Sports and BBC2 NI in the UK.  Then subject to how the fixtures fall and reasonable travel costs a few trips over to Ireland are ON for 2014.  As are trips to London GAA - as a means to supporting the game closer to my front door.

Hoping for your positive comments.

PS. If you like Chelsea or Man.Utd. fair enough.  I wouldn't cross the road to watch them, unless Portsmouth were the opposition.  Born in bred in Sheffield who else would I support :)

Welcome aboard, and welcome to the wacky world of the GAA. We'll crease each other, but if anyone says anything about the GAA from the outside, they'll get a right kicking :)

One of the things you will probably struggle with is the parochial nature of the GAA, most of the primal, gut wrenching joy or disappointment about the GAA is that it is of your place, your people, your friends and neighbours playing. They represent you, you don't just 'support' them, you *are* them.

Also, the club aspect of the GAA is huge, and is even more embedded in the Irish psyche than the Inter County scene, which is what will receive most of the TV and the big crowds obviously.

Having said all that, I think it is great, and should be happening more, that people from abroad, with no previous exposure to the GAA will grow to love (and hopefully play) our games as well. Premier TV etc will be a big help in giving the exposure, and the GAA should try to leverage that. This will, obviously, be very much focussed on the Inter County scene, and thus people's teams (with no connection to the place) will be county teams currently doing well, just like we pick up PRemiership teams as kids here, as you say.

However, if you wish to enjoy the games at more than a superficial level, I think you need to understand the IC scene is the glamourous tip of a huge iceberg which is the community GAA. I would suggest that to know the GAA, you need to understand the role of the GAA in the community, in the form of the clubs in every parish in the country. Then when you see what those clubs mean in those towns, villages and townlands, you'll begin to understand where the county teams slot in when you consider all those parishes coming together under the banner of the county representative team.

As a complete newcomer, I'd recommend a trip around Ireland, a holiday, and in every little town and village you'll see the clubs, you can ask about their games, talk about them in the pubs and ask about those local heros who've pulled on the county jersey. Ask and hear about old triumphs, disasters, rows, splits, reunions, 'that shower of f**kers up the road' (who will be the best teammates at county level) etc etc.

Do that for a couple of weeks, and ignore the county, and *then* from your couch in Yorkshire watch a county game with that background, and you'll really get the enjoyment and understand exactly what the GAA is in Ireland and beyond.

One side effect that I find great is that the smallest towns or clubs in Ireland are identified through the exploits of their players. Cahirciveen, a small town in South Kerry, will always be the home of Jack O'Shea and Maurice Fitzgerald. My town of Ferbane will always be the Lowrys and Tony McTeague. No one would have heard of Moy if it wasn't for the GAA and the Cavanaghs, but now a huge amount of people know exactly where and what it is.

AZOffaly

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Re: Foreign appreciation of GAA?
« Reply #4 on: August 09, 2013, 12:10:12 PM »
Oh, and by the way, not a bit of fear should you have about your accent. You'll be made more than welcome if you are talking to anyone and tell them you are a GAA virgin. Of course they'll immediately try to sway you to their team and county, so avoid them all until you happen to go to an Offaly game. (It may be hard to find them on Premier TV).

30mog

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Re: Foreign appreciation of GAA?
« Reply #5 on: August 09, 2013, 12:56:42 PM »
And unbelievably GAA is still strictly amateur!  Long may it continue.  Manchester United, Chelsea et al aren't sports clubs anymore!  And it isn't just soccer that has sold it's soul.  That said.  I bet top GAA players cash in from an endorsement or personal appearance here and there. 

For trips over to Ireland.  I would rather pick out opportunities that get me over for the whole weekend.  Prefer 2 or 3 of them a year to 7 or 8 day trips.  Exceptional exceptions are possible though.  From where I live, there are 4 airports within 90 minutes with flights to Ireland.  As long as you have a few weeks notice, you can normally get a good deal.  Even if it is the airline that charge you to use the loo.  Little or no luggage, boarding passes printed at home etc..  Before now I have been unlocking my front door less than 100 minutes after the engines firing up for take off at Dublin.

Before anymore of that.  I do indeed want to learn the whole game from club to county to NFl/NHL ahead of next years All-Ireland Championship.  And it is fair to say looking in on London GAA will satisfy some of the agenda.  Then again, if someone can tell me the nearest club to Dublin Airport I might give it a whirl.  As sometimes I can get to Dublin cheaper than London.

take_yer_points

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Re: Foreign appreciation of GAA?
« Reply #6 on: August 09, 2013, 12:59:30 PM »
And unbelievably GAA is still strictly amateur!  Long may it continue.  Manchester United, Chelsea et al aren't sports clubs anymore!  And it isn't just soccer that has sold it's soul.  That said.  I bet top GAA players cash in from an endorsement or personal appearance here and there. 

For trips over to Ireland.  I would rather pick out opportunities that get me over for the whole weekend.  Prefer 2 or 3 of them a year to 7 or 8 day trips.  Exceptional exceptions are possible though.  From where I live, there are 4 airports within 90 minutes with flights to Ireland.  As long as you have a few weeks notice, you can normally get a good deal.  Even if it is the airline that charge you to use the loo.  Little or no luggage, boarding passes printed at home etc..  Before now I have been unlocking my front door less than 100 minutes after the engines firing up for take off at Dublin.

Before anymore of that.  I do indeed want to learn the whole game from club to county to NFl/NHL ahead of next years All-Ireland Championship.  And it is fair to say looking in on London GAA will satisfy some of the agenda.  Then again, if someone can tell me the nearest club to Dublin Airport I might give it a whirl.  As sometimes I can get to Dublin cheaper than London.

Not sure about Dublin, but you could fly into Belfast City Airport and watch Glentoran St Patricks beside the airport  ;)

blewuporstuffed

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Re: Foreign appreciation of GAA?
« Reply #7 on: August 09, 2013, 01:20:27 PM »
Quote
One of the things you will probably struggle with is the parochial nature of the GAA, most of the primal, gut wrenching joy or disappointment about the GAA is that it is of your place, your people, your friends and neighbours playing. They represent you, you don't just 'support' them, you *are* them.

a fantastic way to sum up the gaa at club level
I can only please one person per day. Today is not your day. Tomorrow doesn't look good either

Bensars

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Re: Foreign appreciation of GAA?
« Reply #8 on: August 09, 2013, 01:41:30 PM »
And unbelievably GAA is still strictly amateur!  Long may it continue.  Manchester United, Chelsea et al aren't sports clubs anymore!  And it isn't just soccer that has sold it's soul.  That said.  I bet top GAA players cash in from an endorsement or personal appearance here and there. 

For trips over to Ireland.  I would rather pick out opportunities that get me over for the whole weekend.  Prefer 2 or 3 of them a year to 7 or 8 day trips.  Exceptional exceptions are possible though.  From where I live, there are 4 airports within 90 minutes with flights to Ireland.  As long as you have a few weeks notice, you can normally get a good deal.  Even if it is the airline that charge you to use the loo.  Little or no luggage, boarding passes printed at home etc..  Before now I have been unlocking my front door less than 100 minutes after the engines firing up for take off at Dublin.

Before anymore of that.  I do indeed want to learn the whole game from club to county to NFl/NHL ahead of next years All-Ireland Championship.  And it is fair to say looking in on London GAA will satisfy some of the agenda.  Then again, if someone can tell me the nearest club to Dublin Airport I might give it a whirl.  As sometimes I can get to Dublin cheaper than London.

What about the Irshenin Leeds ?  A few teams up that direction too ( or used to be )

Fionntamhnach

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Re: Foreign appreciation of GAA?
« Reply #9 on: August 09, 2013, 01:59:08 PM »
A few years previously, I have taken exploratory day trips to Croke Park and Casements - was a bit too nervous to say too much to reveal my broad Yorkshire accent - was I worrying needlessly?
Wouldn't worry about it. My own accent is a weird hybrid of North Yorkshire & West Tyrone to the point that over the years a lot of people have asked me if I was actually born in Tyrone (!) and it's never been any problem - though the North Yorkshire bit has faded somewhat over the years there's still an occasional twinge.  :o
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5 Sams

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Re: Foreign appreciation of GAA?
« Reply #10 on: August 09, 2013, 02:04:01 PM »
And unbelievably GAA is still strictly amateur!  Long may it continue.  Manchester United, Chelsea et al aren't sports clubs anymore!  And it isn't just soccer that has sold it's soul.  That said.  I bet top GAA players cash in from an endorsement or personal appearance here and there. 

For trips over to Ireland.  I would rather pick out opportunities that get me over for the whole weekend.  Prefer 2 or 3 of them a year to 7 or 8 day trips.  Exceptional exceptions are possible though.  From where I live, there are 4 airports within 90 minutes with flights to Ireland.  As long as you have a few weeks notice, you can normally get a good deal.  Even if it is the airline that charge you to use the loo.  Little or no luggage, boarding passes printed at home etc..  Before now I have been unlocking my front door less than 100 minutes after the engines firing up for take off at Dublin.

Before anymore of that.  I do indeed want to learn the whole game from club to county to NFl/NHL ahead of next years All-Ireland Championship.  And it is fair to say looking in on London GAA will satisfy some of the agenda.  Then again, if someone can tell me the nearest club to Dublin Airport I might give it a whirl.  As sometimes I can get to Dublin cheaper than London.

Welcome aboard 30mog. It would be churlish, indeed disrespectful, to try and improve on AZOffaly's summary.
My advice. Come over to Ireland ANY weekend in the year and you will find something to interest you....let us know on here when you are flying over and you will be pointed in the right direction for that weekend's action. I'd safely say some of the lads on here would be willing to meet you to give you the grand tour. Don't restrict your self to Dublin though. At the risk of getting a kicking from the AJHs on here the Dublin club scene wouldn't necessarily reflect the true parochial nature alluded to by AZOffaly earlier. Have fun and dont disguise the accent....no need.
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mayogodhelpus@gmail.com

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Re: Foreign appreciation of GAA?
« Reply #11 on: August 09, 2013, 02:13:22 PM »
And unbelievably GAA is still strictly amateur!  Long may it continue.  Manchester United, Chelsea et al aren't sports clubs anymore!  And it isn't just soccer that has sold it's soul.  That said.  I bet top GAA players cash in from an endorsement or personal appearance here and there. 

For trips over to Ireland.  I would rather pick out opportunities that get me over for the whole weekend.  Prefer 2 or 3 of them a year to 7 or 8 day trips.  Exceptional exceptions are possible though.  From where I live, there are 4 airports within 90 minutes with flights to Ireland.  As long as you have a few weeks notice, you can normally get a good deal.  Even if it is the airline that charge you to use the loo.  Little or no luggage, boarding passes printed at home etc..  Before now I have been unlocking my front door less than 100 minutes after the engines firing up for take off at Dublin.

Before anymore of that.  I do indeed want to learn the whole game from club to county to NFl/NHL ahead of next years All-Ireland Championship.  And it is fair to say looking in on London GAA will satisfy some of the agenda.  Then again, if someone can tell me the nearest club to Dublin Airport I might give it a whirl.  As sometimes I can get to Dublin cheaper than London.

I'd suggest catching a Dublin Junior Club match the morning of say the semi between Mayo and Tyrone (prob be no club game the day Dublin playing), stand at the sideline with the 20-100 other hardy souls, then watch as fans, players and management rush to their cars to get to Croke Park asap for the Semi.
Time to take a more chill-pill approach to life.

fearglasmor

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Re: Foreign appreciation of GAA?
« Reply #12 on: August 09, 2013, 02:36:42 PM »

[/quote]

 the Dublin club scene wouldn't necessarily reflect the true parochial nature alluded to by AZOffaly earlier. Have fun and dont disguise the accent....no need.
[/quote]

Don't heed that advice though, head out to The Naul, Man O'War, Ballyboughal, Rollestown, Balbriggan, Skerries, Rush, Lusk.  It as Parochial as it gets.

mayogodhelpus@gmail.com

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Re: Foreign appreciation of GAA?
« Reply #13 on: August 09, 2013, 02:41:59 PM »


 the Dublin club scene wouldn't necessarily reflect the true parochial nature alluded to by AZOffaly earlier. Have fun and dont disguise the accent....no need.
[/quote]

Don't heed that advice though, head out to The Naul, Man O'War, Ballyboughal, Rollestown, Balbriggan, Skerries, Rush, Lusk.  It as Parochial as it gets.
[/quote]

I agree, I was involved in the Dublin GAA scene for several years (a blow-in from Mayo) the Dublin scene is good.
Time to take a more chill-pill approach to life.

5 Sams

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Re: Foreign appreciation of GAA?
« Reply #14 on: August 09, 2013, 02:46:21 PM »


 the Dublin club scene wouldn't necessarily reflect the true parochial nature alluded to by AZOffaly earlier. Have fun and dont disguise the accent....no need.
[/quote]

Don't heed that advice though, head out to The Naul, Man O'War, Ballyboughal, Rollestown, Balbriggan, Skerries, Rush, Lusk.  It as Parochial as it gets.
[/quote]

Sorry to clarify..."the Dublin City Club scene"..
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