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Dublin: 10 °C Friday 28 November, 2014

Top readers’ comments of the week

Here’s our round-up of the most interesting and most popular comments from the past seven days. Did you make it in?

EVERY SATURDAY MORNING we take a look at all the best comments left on the site by our readers over the past seven days.

This week there was a lot of talk about Irish Water, drug use on Dublin Bus, The Troubles in Northern Ireland, pylons, Enda’s visit to the Gulf states and, of course, the weather.

So here, in no particular order, are the standout comments from the week that was.

The top 5 articles which received the most comments this week

1. Over 200 failed asylum seekers & illegal migrants were deported last year (443 comments)

2. Poll: Does Ireland need a new political party? (283 comments)

3. McAleese: Catholic Church ‘in denial over homosexuality for decades’ (270 comments)

4. Who is most likely to support the legalisation of marijuana in Ireland? (238 comments)

5. Dublin Bus looking at CCTV footage after medicine dispensers found on 39a (218 comments)

The 5 most popular comments this week

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(Image: Watt_Dabney/Flickr)

1. The top two comments of the past seven days were left on a popular DailyEdge.ie article about things that Irish girls love to love. First up, Paddy J Ward got 2,530 green thumbs up for this addition to the list:

*Cheap uggs that cave in on one side after a week and it looks like the owner had been broke from the ankles like your man in “misery”

2. Gibbs also wanted to add an item to the list. Something that Irish women would not be able to live without but maybe Irish men COULD be happy without. He got 1,834 thumbs up for this idea.

Pyjamas they love them. And no chance of getting them off on a slightly cold night. “Go away will ya I’m freezing

3. During the week, a woman claimed a ‘onesie’ saved the life of her baby which she had just given birth to while wearing it. Larry O’Doherty quickly noted that –

Onesie becomes a twosie.

- and got 1,551 green thumbs for the effort.

4. As we prepared for the storm to hit on Monday, Cliona had some stellar advice for readers, who repaid her with 1,358 thumbs up.

Statistically studies show the pub is the safest place to be……..

5. DailyEdge.ie also examined what Irish lads love on Sunday. The comprehensive list forgot one thing, as joe o’reilly pointed out – and 1,200 others agreed.

A chicken fillet roll for lunch

Some of the best comments left on the site this week

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To kick us off this week, we have some really, really good news. You may remember back in the second week of June, Brian Phelan had the most popular comment on the site. He told us all:

In bed now .. Can’t sleep so I have a towel over my head and iPad so I don’t wake my better half .. After two miscarriages .. She had scan today 8 weeks pregnant .. Fingers crossed and yes she can toss and kick as much as she wants :)

He was overwhelmed by the kindness and good wishes sent to him by TheJournal.ie readers and has kept us up-to-date on his family’s progress. On Wednesday, 8 January at 10.54am, baby Samuel Christopher Phelan, entered the world. We’ll let Brian tell you in his own words.

Hi Michelle, i wrote on one of your articles about 8months back and i got one of top comments about my pregnant partner, that after two miscarriages she can kick and push me around the bed as much as she wants..I think it was an article on sleep..lol well i am sitting in the coombe car park waiting to go up to my partner. She is having a c-section this morning….And i will meet my son for the first time….I got alot of kind  replies to that comment i just wanted to let ye know ….thanks again Brian…da in training
He was a little poorly yesterday and is in ICU in the Coombe , but today he is doing amazing … And life is sooooo good … Mother is a emotionally and physically wrecked …. But it is a really good news story he is going to be a special man born on the same day as Elvis and David Bowie lol… We want to thank u and ur team for showing kindness … I will try to forward u a pic … He is so beautiful …

He did forward the picture and we’ve used it as the main image for this article. We’ve also taken to calling the little lad, Sam ‘Comment Baby’ Phelan in the news room. Best of luck, guys.

Another reader shared a personal experience with us this week on a DailyEdge.ie article about the different stages you go through as you tackle that first January run. Conor Sheridan inspired us:

I started running at the beginning of February last year having finished a course of chemotherapy for testicular cancer brought on from the trauma of breaking my back in early 2012. It was mainly to lose the weight the steroids had caused me to put on.

On the suggestion of a really close friend of mine, a few of us decided to do an ongoing fundraiser throughout 2013 starting in April with a skydive then in May we did the 10k Croghan Hill Challenge, the Curragh Run 10k, the 12km Hell & Back Apollo in June, a 26km Duathlon in July, in August we climbed Carrauntoohill and Croagh Patrick on the same weekend, in September we did the 42km Rough Diamond Challenge in Connemara, then the 10k RunAMuck Challenge in October and finished up with the 14km Hell And Back Titan in November, exactly a year since I had started chemo. We did the 10k Movember Run in the Phoenix Park for the lols and banter as well and I set a new PB of 48 minutes so yeah fairly happy with that.

All in all we raised €10,000 for 3 charities and will be handing the money over next week. It’s pretty cool what you can do when you decide to just do it! Looking forward to the 20km Hell & Back in June and the Tough Mudder in October.

A witty response on a serious topic does not often come off well, but at time of writing, Johnny Downes had no red thumbs for this observation about the ongoing controversy about Irish Water’s spend on consultants.

Irish Water is already contaminated. It didn’t take long!

Many people of a certain age may be able to relate to the story Charles J Ahern tells on a column about ‘Operation Emigration‘.

I always said that I’d never emigrate, that if I left it will be my choice. My qualifications are pretty useless here at the moment and I stayed in college as long as I could hoping that when I eventually finished there would be work for me. But sadly there is nothing. I was offered a JobBridge scheme that the chap said I was over qualified for. I’m only doing it to get me out of the house.

At the end of the day, I probably will head off in about six months time. But it will be purely my choice and I WILL return to the country I love. Its just a shame that there are more push factors than pull factors (for young people) in Ireland at the moment.

There was a mixed reaction to Enda Kenny’s trip to the Gulf states and his failure to put pressure on leaders to answer questions about their human rights records.

Patrick Varley summed up the ‘two schools of thought’ quite succinctly.

One, that the delegation should use the visit to raise concerns about human rights and set a precedent for other nations to do the same as well and perhaps help the various people suffering at the hands of the regime.

The other, that Ireland needs to explore every trade option to help speed up the recovery of our economy and bring benefit to our own citizens and that any protest is likely to jeopardize a deal and would only be a drop in the ocean when other nations and superpowers actively support the regime.

Both are right, one for it’s idealism the other for it’s realism.

On Christine Bohan’s article highlighting the human rights issues that plague the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Qatar, Noel Scanlon shared how the area has been good to him and his family.

I live and work here in Saudi Arabia, and it has saved my bacon and allowed me to provide for my 2 children back home, pay the mortgage and repay debts from my business which collapsed after the ’08 crash, I don’t expect the Government to assist beyond the basic allowances, I wasn’t involved in property development or had nothing to do with banking or the like. Saudi has been good to me and I for one applaud Irish businesses and companies who have come over here and made it work and provided work and jobs for people like me and I would also applaud Kenny and Bruton for assisting them to gain more business.

As for the article, yes, there are issues in this country, but they are making progress and I have found them to be open about it and I’ve seen progress in my time here.

In summary, this is a region developing and struggling to balance tradition with modernity, but is also a region of huge progress where Irish people can contribute to and benefit from.

Others just felt it highlighted how good we have it here in Ireland. James O’Sullivan writes:

All the moaning we do about Ireland but look around the world and you’ll see in many ways there’s no better place to live! We’ve no insane weather like the Americans; no constant threat of poverty like Africa, India and South America; and no fear of persecution if we insult dear leader Kenny and call him a pr*ck right hear on national media. Along with this we’ve great cities like Galway and Cork and an atmosphere where people know how to have the craic. Bit off topic all this I know.

This week, Dublin Zoo, which many of our commenters have described as a brilliant amenity and a perfect day out, revealed it attracted more than 1,000,000 visitors last year. Shanti Om looked at both sides of the argument about keeping animals in captivity following a ‘below the line’ debate.

On one hand I agree. It’s wrong to have a wild animal caged.

At the same time, humanity is destroying their natural habitat. We want black oily liquids, shiny things from underground, more land to put grazing animals on to fulfil our need for excessive meat consumption.. We build over their migration patterns – their “homes”, so to say they should be in the wild is a little narrow sighted. And I haven’t even got to poachers and hunters yet..

At least in the zoo they’re safe. And with breeding programmes they’re not going to go extinct. Maybe one day soon we will cop on and try to strive a balance between wild lands and settlement. Then the wild animals in zoos may be able to get their habitat back – and there would be no need for zoos anymore.. But that sounds slightly unlikely the way things are going at the moment :(

Finally, on Friday night, our Political Editor Hugh O’Connell revealed that a number of documents related to the Bank Guarantee have been lost in the Department of FinanceCat O’Driscoll did her best ‘Irish Mammy’ when she asked:

Did they try praying to St Anthony?

Spot any good comments? Send them through to us by email at sinead@thejournal.ie.

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