Wednesday, December 01, 2010

The Dork of Cork

My weekly search for material for the award wining NARN "This Week in Gate Keeping" series occasionally yields items not directly applicable, but worthy of further exposure. What follows in one such instance.

Breaking news from County Cork, Ireland:

A popular Irish radio presenter issued a sincere apology on-air last week after reports that he allegedly committed an inappropriate sex act on an Aer Lingus flight.

Which raises the question, what sex acts on Aer Lingus are considered to be appropriate?

But it couldn't have been that bad, right? The guy was a radio professional after all.

The Irish Examiner recently reported that local presenter Neil Prendeville was seen to expose himself and masturbate while sitting in his seat, flying from London Heathrow to Cork on October 9. Mr Prendeville was seated between a male and female passenger at the time, the newspaper said. He was apparently stopped in his actions by the on-board Aer Lingus staff, who filed a complaint at the time.

He loves to fly and it shows!

Yes, "inappropriate" is one way to describe his activities. I wonder what could have driven this man to such erratic behavior. Was it an especially provocative in-flight movie? An especially provocative in-flight bag of pretzels? A misguided attempt to audition for a job as a TSA screener?

Did I mention he was Irish?

The radio presenter however stated that he had absolutely no recollection of the incident, having taken painkillers for a neck injury prior to boarding the 10.15pm flight, having previously consumed alcohol whilst in London.

Reportedly, this all happened while he was returning from a junket sponsored by the Irish Stereotype Reinforcement Advisory Board.

Hey, anyone can make a mistake. The important thing is to admit your errors, own up to your responsibilities, and make amends. Right Mr. Irish McSlappyPants?

"I apologise unreservedly to all concerned."

If he only would have stopped there ...

Mr. Prendeville says he has absolutely no memory of the flight, the Belfast Telegraph reports.

"If the reports in the Examiner are true," he said on 96FM, "and I can't deny that they are not, because I just don't recall, I would like to take the opportunity to offer my deepest apologies to the passengers on the plane, to the flight personnel, to my family… to my employers and my work colleagues and to all of the people of Cork. "

The 'if I did it when I was blacked out, I'm sorry' apology may be a new standard for bad apologies. Worse than the 'I'm sorry you feel that way' apology. Worse than the "was that wrong? No one ever told me that was frowned upon' apology. At least in these cases, the perpetrator admits he did it. Attempting to establish plausible deniability in the same sentence as apologizing necessarily invalidates the entire exercise.

Not that this excuse makes him a candidate for Irish Good Citizen of the Year anyway. The *best* you can say about him is that upon ingesting a few recreational chemicals, he drops into a fugue state and immediately drops his pants and starts adjusting the antenna in public. Not exactly a guy you want to invite to your next New Year's Eve Party.

Obviously, a story like this needs a happy ending.

Mr Prendeville described the incident as "a terrible personal experience", and advised the public not to mix painkillers and alcohol, due to the events of this unusual incident.

A good lesson for the kids. I hope to see this on a public service announcement or After School Special soon.