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Dublin: 11 °C Wednesday 17 December, 2014

The Evening Fix… now with added tightrope-walking gibbons

Here are the things we learned, loved and shared today.

A child is carried by an adult in Khanaung Chaung Wa village, southeast of Yangon, Burma. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe)

HERE ARE THE things we learned, loved and shared today as we round off the day in three easy steps.

THINGS WE LEARNED:

#SEANAD: The full text of the government’s Bill to abolish the Seanad has been published, outlining the exact changes that would be made to the Constitution if the second House of the Oireachtas was to be scrapped. Debates on whether or not to keep the upper house began today, and you can read our breakdown of what exactly would change if the Seanad was scrapped.

#SOCIAL WELFARE: As Live Register figures indicated a small drop today, a new report from the Department of Social Protection revealed that some 2.3 million people, or half the population of Ireland, received a weekly social welfare payment last year. Nearly 1.5 million people received payments each week but when qualified adults and children were included, the numbers benefiting from the payments almost doubled.

#SURROGATE: The State is to lodge a Supreme Court appeal against a landmark ruling which allowed a biological mother to have her name included on her child’s birth certificate, even though the child was carried and delivered by a surrogate mother. The Department of Social Protection has confirmed that the Registrar General, against whom the original case was taken, will appeal the ruling in order to “to clarify a number of points of law of exceptional public importance”.

#RIP: A 41-year-old Polish man who sustained head injuries after he was assaulted with a weapon last Friday in Galway has died. It is understood a row broke out between a group of men on the Cullairbaun estate in Athenry on 31 May. A post-mortem exam is due to be carried out after which gardaí will decide whether the case should be classed as a murder investigation.

#CHARGED: Coronation Street actor William Roche, who has played the character Ken Barlow for the past number of decade, has been charged with a further five charges of indecent assault, alleged to have occurred between 1965 and 1968. Last month Roache was arrested and charged with two offences of rape, allegedly involving a girl who would have been 15 years old at the time.

Niamh Fallon, six, from Malahide dressed in Victorian clothing as Heuston Station unveils the oldest narrow gauge steam locomotive in the world, The Princess, which has recently been on display at London’s Paddington station and is coming to Ireland as part of The Gathering. (Niall Carson/PA Wire)

THINGS WE LOVED:

  • Dublin City Council has announced a new series of operatic performances for the month of June in Merrion Square Park; ‘Opera in the Park’ will showcase four  lunchtime concerts, with performances taking place at 1 pm each Friday, starting on the 7 June with La Bohéme.
  • PhD student Joshua Katz has mapped out some dialectal differences across the United States, and Buzzfeed have picked out the best… we just have one question, y’all: what the hell are “tennis shoes”?
  • Some people are just gifted at turning lemons into lemonade. Take ‘Dave’ from Birmingham who, after being left with an £84 parking ticket that he couldn’t afford, decided to auction the offending item on eBay, saying: “There must be one person who has done well in life and can relate to this very small horror story who would like to buy it from me and smile for several days knowing they did a great thing.” As it turns out, more than one person was willing to help

THINGS WE SHARED:

  • Liberace may be a byword for camp but fashion has played a more meaningful role in his legacy than mere decoration: it helped to soften the public aversion to homosexuality and allowed a gay musician something that was largely forbidden in his time – acceptance.
  • Internships and the new economy seem to go hand-in-hand but, Suzanne Moore writes in the Guardian, the big loser in this scenario is society.

What, this? Oh it’s just a tightrope-walking gibbon. No biggie.



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