Greetings & Blessings to one and all,

We hope this edition finds you and yours on the pig’s back, as fit as a fiddle and, in the land where you live, cool if it’s hot and warm if it’s cold. If this is your first edition, many thanks for joining us and if you enjoy our musings and meanderings, please feel free to share them with your family and friends.

Definitely, in the last couple of weeks, the weather has figured prominently in both hemispheres with heat waves down under and one of the biggest freezes in living memory making life miserable in Europe - especially in Ireland and the UK where folks just aren’t used to significant snowfalls and plunging temperatures. We hope and pray that whatever the weather, you haven’t been too badly affected nd that things have improved.

As for ourselves, here in our Ohio Valley we are being spared the extremely harsh winter being endured by people north of us, down south, and also back east. We did have a wee bit of snow the other day, but it was so cold it made it too fluffy for making a snowman. When our grandson came to visit, he and Nana built what looks more like a squatty penguin. Then, overnight, the deer ate the penguin’s nose! Oh well. Small details like that don’t bother you when you’ve just turned three. Or a lot older like Nana!

Onwards. Eclipsing even the huge headlines about the weather was word of the massive earthquake in Haitii. As we did with the tsunami disaster two years ago, we have posted a link on our site to RTE which lists organizations accepting donations. If you’d like to click through to it right away, here’s the URL:

In other news, Russ has had a bit of a setback and went for another ultrasound last Wednesday. We are not anticipating a return of the cancer, but his recovery has been very slow and uncomfortable due to what his surgeon thinks is an infection. Once again, we’re asking for your prayers.

And once again, we’re asking for something more:
it’s that time of year and we are always reluctant to ask for help - especially in these tough economic times. But as in the past, all we are requesting is for every reader to send us a dollar. If we get a 100% response, it will be more than enough to cover our costs to maintain the newsletter and the web site. It would also help to refill the sugarbowl after the financial setbacks of 2009. If you would like to make a donation, you can do so via PayPal
Our account is the following email address:

Or you can send a donation by mail to
Bridget & Russ Haggerty
5814 Blue Spruce
Cincinnati OH 45224.
Any amount is welcome and all donations of $5.00 or more will receive a special token of our appreciation, a Lucky Irish Blessing coin.

Many thanks in advance for any help you can give us.

Enough of the blitherin’ on with the update...
SPONSOR: Please help us keep your newsletter coming - visit our good friends at the Celtic Attic:
St. Valentine’s Day is right around the corner! Stop by the Celtic Attic where you’ll find a wide array of gifts for those special people close to your heart - and all with Celtic flair. Plus, take 5.00 off an order of $50 or more exclusively through Irish Culture & Customs. Just put the code IC01 in the add a gift card section!
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From the mailbag
Quips, Quotes, Proverbs & Toasts
A Bit of the Wit
Joke of The Week
Did You Know
Know Your Writers
The week That Is
Leave 'em Laughing
We post major news stories on our web site daily - but we make it a point to avoid murder, mayhem and politics. There’s enough of that already without adding to it. You’ll find two weeks worth of stories here:

With a special thanks to the Irish Emigrant, what follows is a selection of news items that probably won't make the national headlines. To read complete regional round-ups for the past several weeks, please click

Armagh: New look for Tandragee building
A building belonging to a company which was once the biggest employer in Tandragee is to be converted into fifty-nine residential units. Sintons Mill, a listed building, was opened in the 1880s and continued to employ local people for one hundred and ten years. Now Consarc Conservation has appointed Dawson Stelfox to oversee the conversion, which will restore the mill chimney and all the associated buildings.

Cavan: Dancing festival in Cavan
Last weekend saw the annual Dancing in the Drumlins festival take place in the Cavan Crystal Hotel in Cavan town. Among the bands providing the music for the Cavan Set Dancers and their hundreds of set-dancing visitors were the Brian Boru céilí band, the Copperplate céilí band and the Johnny Reidy céilí band. Mooncoin, Micheal Sexton and Pat Walsh also played for the dancers and a number of workshops were held.

Clare: Concern rises over fate of listed building
A plan by the county council to demolish the two listed buildings at Blake’s Corner in Ennistymon to make way for a new roundabout has led to the setting up of a campaign by the Save Ennistymon Heritage Group. The two buildings, Blake’s and Linnane’s were built in the middle of the nineteenth century and they are both protected structures.

Cork: Blarney man looks after his own road
John O’Donovan from Blarney, who runs a haulage business, decided not to wait for the local authority to make the roads around his area safe during the freezing weather. Based at Coolowen, two miles from the motorway and with seven trucks to keep on the road, John purchased his own gritting machine and attached it to his four-wheel drive vehicle. In addition to keeping his own vehicles on the road, John has also been helping out his neighbours. He had stockpiled salt some weeks ago and says he has enough for up to another week.

Dublin: Flight centenary celebrated in Dublin
On the last day of the year members of the National Aero Club gathered at Weston Airport to celebrate the one hundredth anniversary of the first Irish-powered flight. The event took place at Hillsborough, Co. Down with an aircraft flown by Harry Ferguson of Belfast. The present-day members of the club took to the skies in a variety of craft including a biplane to mark the centenary. In addition, they had joined with members of the Royal Irish Automobile Club to replicate a photograph taken on Dawson Street in Dublin in 1909 to mark the founding of the Irish Aero Club.

Fermanagh: Enniskillen man catches first salmon
The honour of catching the first salmon of the season this year went to Enniskillen man Brian McEvoy, a lecturer at Fermanagh Skills Centre. He arrived at the River Drowes in Co. Leitrim in mid-morning, several hours after the first eager fishermen had set up their rods. Less than three hours later he caught the first salmon of the year, the second time the honour has fallen to him as he also caught the first salmon ten years ago.

Galway: Galway hotels reacting to recession
Some of the hotels in Galway city and county are riding out the recession by reverting to the practice of some years ago and closing for the months of January and February. However some of those that are remaining open are taking the extreme step of offering rooms free of charge on a first-come first-served basis for the rest of the month.

Kerry: Parishioner saves Killarney church
A parishioner of the Prince of Peace Church in Fossa, Killarney, was instrumental in saving the church from serious damage when he called in to collect a leaflet. The interior of the church, which is a popular wedding venue for couples world-wide, had filled with smoke and two units of Killarney Fire Brigade brought the fire under control. The fire started due to a faulty electrical circuit providing light to stained glass panels but although the building suffered smoke damage no major harm was done.

Kilkenny: City church bought by State
The Church of Ireland has been paid €1.1m by the State for St Mary’s Church in Kilkenny city, which has been deteriorating for the past twenty years and has not been used as a church for forty years. The thirteenth century church includes a graveyard containing what have been described as internationally important funerary monuments and it is hoped that those damaged can be restored and the whole building declared a national monument.

Leitrim: Honour for Carrick man
A Carrick-on-Shannon man has received a CBE in the New Year’s Honours List in Britain. Seamus Taylor, received the honour for his work in promoting equality in Britain. In June of last year Mr Taylor joined the academic staff of NUI Maynooth where he lectures in social policy in the department of applied social studies.

Longford: Diocese determined to rebuild cathedral
Bishop of Ardagh and Clonmacnois Dr Colm O’Reilly, backed by the priests of the diocese and the parishioners of the cathedral, has expressed his determination that St Mel’s Cathedral in Longford town will be rebuilt. The building was badly damaged by fire on Christmas morning, necessitating the use of the Temperance Hall for Mass, though in the immediate future St Mel’s College Chapel is likely to be used. Bishop O’Reilly said he had been astounded by the support he had received, which included a donation of €400 from a group of girls who went out on the wren trail on St Stephen’s Day and handed the proceeds over to him.

Mayo: Foxford landmark to be upgraded
The wooden cross just outside Foxford, known as the Foxford Bráid, is apparently in danger of collapse and local residents and the members of the Admiral Brown Society have pledged to replace it. According to Oliver Murphy of the society’s organising committee, they plan to replace the old cross with a steel structure powered by solar energy. In recent years the original cross has been lit each Good Friday by local men Kevin Reape and Larry Murray. It is planned that the original cross will be relocated to a site at Craggagh cemetery and a walkway will be provided to the Bráid. A granite memorial is to be placed at the foot of the new cross which will have engraved on it the names of patrons who donate funds to the project.

Meath: Artefacts to have temporary home in Kells
While the roof on the Kells Heritage Centre is repaired, which will involve the closing of the centre for twelve months, the main artefacts on display are to be moved to the town hall. At the new site a tourist information point will also be established. Other heritage work to be carried out this year includes a new heritage walk at the Tower of Loyd and a new canopy for the Cross of Kells which is now located outside the heritage centre. The Tower of Loyd itself is to be reopened to visitors early in the year, while a new tourist walking signage route and two more facsimile copies of the Book of Kells will be provided.

Monaghan: Carrick trees to be surveyed
A survey is to be carried out of two rare trees in the centre of Carrickmacross, effectively placing a preservation order on the trees on a temporary basis. The survey, commissioned by the Town Council, concerns two trees on the Beech Drive housing estate on the Shercock Road and arose after a planning application was lodged by Damien McMahon for a dwelling at Beech Drive. There were fears that one of the trees might be felled if the application was approved. The trees are hundreds of years old and one is believed to be one of only five in the country.

Offaly: Hotel marks anniversary
The Bridge House Hotel in Tullamore, under manager Colm McCabe, is to hold a number of events to mark its fortieth anniversary, with a Ruby Ball taking place in two weeks time. The ballroom will be decorated to a Ruby theme and guests will be greeted with a Tullamore Dew drinks reception, with music provided by the Tullamore Gospel Choir. Presenter for the evening will be Derek Hartigan and a seven-course meal with be prepared by executive chef Paddy Kennedy.

Sligo: New road to open this month
The first part of the new Western Distributor Road is due to open later this month, running from the Ballydoogan Road near the entrance to Mitchell Curley Park, to the Strandhill Road at Kevinsfort. However it has not been without opposition, mainly from residents in Maugherboy, Kevinsfort and Strandhill who say it is too close to the children’s playground in Mitchell Curley Park.

Tipperary: Terryglass farmers in TV documentary
Recently, a documentary was aired on RTE featuring six farmers from Terryglass. “A film from my parish – 6 farms” by Tony Donoghue from Ballinderry won Best Short Documentary when it was shown at the Kerry Film Festival last year.

Wexford: Enniscorthy to honour Tóibín
Colm Tóibín is to be given a civic reception in his native Enniscorthy during the town’s fifteen hundredth anniversary celebrations. Originally scheduled for this past week, it had to be postponed because of bad weather. When th reception does take place, the novelist will read from his work: “Colm Tóibín: The Writer and his Writing Explored.” Tóibín will also take part in an interview and question and answer session.

Wicklow: Bray cleans up
The town of Bray has taken the title of Ireland’s cleanest town at the awards presented by the Irish Business Against Litter group. The litter surveys are carried out by An Taisce, who praised the obvious efforts made in providing good paving, litter bins and attractive planting on the Main Street of the town.

CHICAGO, USA: : Irish artist Niall Ward has works included in the Energy Art Salon 2010 exhibition which runs at the Murphy Hill Gallery in Chicago from January 15 to February 25.To learn more about Niall, please click
SPONSOR: Please help us keep your newsletter coming - visit our good friends at Lollysmith:
A family operation that’s as nice as they are reliable, they offer a wide array of authentic Irish products, from Feadog Irish Pro 'D' Tin whistles to Connemara Marble Rosary beads and more. And for those who haven't been or would just like to reminisce, the Over Ireland DVD takes you on a tour of the Emerald Island in a whole new way - from above! A breathtaking experience without leaving your home!

Phil writes: I am searching for a copy of a film or audio program that narrates the Papal Mass, part of the Papal Congress held in Dublin's Phoenix Park in June, 1932. Of particular interest to me is the singing there of "Panis Angelicus" by the legendary Count John McCormack. Supposedly, British Pathe filmed this event, and Radio Ireland broadcast the Mass all over the island. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Joan writes: I am currently working on a piece of fiction whose main characters are leprechauns. Now, of course  I’ve read all the myths etc. and suffice to say, since I’m the author MY leprechauns are not your usual cobbler mischief makers. Even though I am giving my own spin to them, they require underlying “truth” to their culture/myth to make them believable. I was wondering what superstitions etc. those who live in Eire might have grown up with regarding these fellows? Thank you in advance for any help.

Jose Mathers is looking for a CD by a top notch violinist playing Roisin Dubh. Thus far no luck. 
ED. NOTE: We looked, too and were surprised not to find anything. Can anyone help?


Big Freeze in Ireland
For those readers used to measuring snow in feet, a couple of inches might not seem like such a calamity. But combine that with black ice, and freezing fog in some areas, plus not enough equipment to melt the stuff...well judge for yourself. This video links to others like it.

Irish Traffic Lights
This one was sent in by Jane - hilarious! Go raibh maith agat!

Let the Good Guys Win
We have this by a group called Toot Sweet and just love the lyrics. We hope you enjoy this version by P. hyde, Tom Cochrane and M. McLauglan:
ED. NOTE: And if you’re interested in the Toot Sweet rendering, you can hear a sample and/orbuy the CD on amazon here: (Be sure to copy the entire link into your browser if it isn’t hot)

Matt Cunningham on Tin Whistle playing Róisin Dubh
The name of the tune means Black Rose and it was written in the 16th Century. It is one of ireland’s most famous political songs and is based on an older love lyric. In searching for a version played on the fiddle, we came across this one:Enjpoy:

Dublin artist Roger Commiskey has a blog!
Our generous Trivia sponsor has created a blog which will keep you updated on exhibitions, new art works and more. Roger invites one and all to stop by and take a look - and leave a comment too if you are so inclined.

The Irish Page
This time around, Jack & Vivian offer the next to last chapter in their ongoing story of Seadna. If you’ve missed the previous chapters, links to each one are at the botton of the page.

Countdown to St. patrick’s Day clock
Hard to believe it’s tight around the corner - just 59 days as of this writing.

The 3/50 Project - Saving our brick and mortar stores
Think about the three independently owned stores you would miss the most if they were gone. Stop in and say hello. Pick up a little something that will make someone smile. Your contribution will help keep those stores open - and thriving. To learn more about the 3/50 project, please click

Free Mammograms
Do you know of a woman who can't afford a mammogram? Here's how you can help. Go to the Breast Cancer site and click on their free mammogram link; if they get enough clicks , they'll be able to donate at least one free mammogram a day to underprivileged women. It takes just a minute and there's no cost involved:
ED. NOTE: Maria Eryaatz advises that free mammograms are also available in all states via the VNA (visiting nurses association).
Click on 'Find A VNA' for the your nearest location.

Free Pet Food!
Last but certainly not least - our ongoing gift to AG in California and all friends to animals, please click this link today and everyday. It only takes a second to feed an animal. Thanks!

Free People Food!
It only takes a second to feed hungry people, too:
From the Catholic Dictionary:
Relics: People who have been going to Mass for so long, they actually know when to sit, kneel, and stand.
New Year's resolution - something that goes in one year and out the other.
This one came in from our good friend Pauline. We were in stitches - Dublin style humour at its best!

Redefining Taking the Bus:

Mick and paddy leave the pub and discover they’ve missed the last bus home. Not wanting to walk, Mick says to Paddy, why don’t we nip down to the depot and “borrow” a bus? Paddy says brilliant and off they go. When they get to the depot Mick says I’ll stand watch while you go get us a bus. He waits and waits and no sign of Paddy. Finally, he yells Paddy, what are ye doin’? Paddy says I’m looking for a number 43 - I can’t find one. Mick yells back, you fookin eejit, then look for a 14. We’ll get off at the roundabout and walk from there.
1. The American Declaration of Independence - The document itself - was handwritten by Irish-born Charles Thomson and printed by another Irishman, John Dunlap?
2. Blarney, as defined by Bishop Fulton J. Sheen, is flattery so thin we like it, as opposed to baloney which is flattery so thick it can't be true?
3. According to Irish custom, you sing a song at a wake and shed a tear at a birth?
First off, the answers to our last quiz:
1. An Irish Christmas Feast by John Keane
2. An Irish Country Christmas by Alice Taylor
3. Dublin Carol by Conor McPherson
A tip of the hat and a pat on the back to the following irish bibliophiles:
Pauline Dewberry
The website I recommend is my own It isn’t an Irish website but I DO have Irish subscribers! Does that count?
ED. NOTE: Fine with us, Pauline! You have a great site and we recommend it to all cat lovers.
ED. NOTE: Have you read Pauline’s essay on BBC’s My Story? It’s very well done and we think it deserves lots of votes. Take a look and if you like what you read, please cast a ballot in Pauline’s favour. Thanks!

Hartson Dowd
My favourite web site above all others - One that I read each day is:
ED. Aw - you’re making us blush, Hartson!

Helen Dowd
ED. NOTE: At the moment Helen is in second place on the top Christian sites listing. Please vote for her and help her be first again - she deserves it! Thanks!

Siobhan Sheehan
I love your Newsletter & News from Ireland....drives my cousins in Co. Waterford mad that I know little tidbits.
ED. NOTE: We suggested to Siobhan that perhaps her cousins in Waterford should subscribe - then may be they can keep up...just kidding!.

Déirdre McKiernan Hetzler
Personalized Tours of Ireland:
Imagine you’re in the country of your dreams with your favorite people. It could be your closest colleagues through the years from work, or your extended family, for a once-in-a-lifetime gathering. Instead of being herded onto a huge tour bus of strangers, you’re together in a small van getting a personalized tour of Ireland. To learn more, please click

If you’d like to see your name in our Irish bibliophile’s list, tell us who wrote the following:

1. With My Lazy Eye
2. Wilderness
3. The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas

Hint: All titles are winners of an Irish Book Award. Please send your answers to Bridget:
Don't forget to nominate a favorite Irish site and it would be helpful if you put "Know Your Writers" in the subject line of your email. Thanks!
First off, the answer to our last noggin nagger:
Sean was out for a walk when it started to rain. He did not have an umbrella and he wasn't wearing a cap. His clothes were soaked, yet not a single hair on his head got wet.
Q. How could this happen?
A. Sean is bald!

Hats off as always to our brilliant Riddle People who had no difficulty at all with this poser. However, first in was Jim Turley from South Bend, Indiana, home of the Fighting Irish. Well done Jim. And now for our next cranium cruncher:

Three playing cards in a row.   Can you name them with these clues?
There is a two to the right of a king.
A diamond will be found to the left of a spade.
An ace is to the left of a heart.
A heart is to the left of a spade.
Q. Can you identify all three cards?
Please send your answer to:
It would be helpful if you put riddle answer in the subject line. Thanks!

1. SEARCH FUNCTION: Have you tried it out? You can find the search box in the banner on the left-hand side. Simply key in whatever word or words you wish and if they’re on the site, Google will find them!

Every purchase through our shop links, helps support our efforts. Many thanks in advance.

1. Article: St Ita foster mother to the saints of Ireland

2. Article: New Year’s to Epiphany

3. Article:  Oiche na Gaoithe Moire

4. Article: Uisce Beatha - The Water of Life!

5. Article: The Weavers of Donegal

6. Article: Counties of Ireland - Antrim

7. Irish Kitchen: Old Fashioned Potato Bread

8. Basic Irish: A New Year, A New You?

9. Kids’ Ireland: Never Forget Ireland

10. Music Review: In Tribute to Liam Clancy by William Ramoutar

11. Trivia Contest: The new contest for January is posted. All entries must be in by midnight, January 31 no matter what time zone you live in.
December’s Winner: Carol Bartley Brown from Canada, who selected the Warrior Pendant generously provided by our sponsor The Celtic Attic. Congratulations, Carol!

12. Circle of Prayer: The third Novena in this cycle began on January 12 and continues through January 20 Whatever your spiritual leanings we ask that you keep the following in your prayers and meditations: Jane Donahue, Mickey, Keyra . the aunt of our friend Carlos who has advanced breast cancer; Jeff Minnick’s 3-month old son. Ronnie Kennedy and Joe Colum, Hartson Dowd, Burnett McManus’ friend, Christy Banik, Joe Colum, Patricia's daughter Heather, the family and friends of the McTiernans, Laureena Blankenship, Sierra Mitchell, Katie Lacinak and so many others including the poor people of Hait devastated by the recent earthquake; we also ask that you keep in mind all those who are suffering from the financial hardships of the economic downturn, and please don't overlook our military personnel serving their countries at home and abroad. Dear Heavenly Father, please keep them safe from all harm and bring those away from home back to their loved ones soon.
SPONSOR: Please help us keep your newsletter coming - visit our good friends at the Irish Lottery:

In operation since 1988, it's one of the oldest online sites in the world. With subscribers in 89 countries it is also among the most reliable. Jackpots are never lower than US $1,500,000 and are frequently worth in excess of US$5,000,000 Here's the best part - you don't have to live in Ireland to play and all winnings are Tax Free!

It’s always been a fantasy of ours that one of readers would scoop the big prize, but you can’t win it if you’re not in it. Play from the comfort of home here: - and the best of Irish luck to you!

So that’s the long and the short of it until we write again. Until then, if you or a loved one are celebrating a birthday, or other special event, we hope it's an occasion filled with joy and happiness.

We’ll take our leave with this lovely blessing:

May the Father richly bless you, may the Son shine grace upon you, and May the Holy Spirit gently hold you and enfold you in God's love.
And as they say in Ireland, mind yourself.

Slan agus beannacht

Bridget & Russ
Get down on your knees and thank God you're still on your feet!
Celtic Blessing - sung by the St. Coca's Choir, from Kilcock, Co. Kildare

Send an email to:
or click on this link:
Please check with the Wild Geese - they have a huge listing of events and we don't want to duplicate their efforts:

Irish Abroad also has a comprehensive listing:

If we receive a unique event not mentioned there, we will be happy to list it here.


Crosshaven, Co. Cork - Now through February 2010
Martha Cashman Sculpture Exhibition, Mad Fish Restaurant
at Cronin’s Pub. Martha will also be presenting her work in Showcase' 10 a trade fair of all Irish art and craft work in the RDS in Dublin on Jan 23rd to 27th. To view examples of Martha’s work, please click

Hollywood, Florida - January 23
We hope your New Year's Resolution includes seeing all your old friends at our next Ceili on January 23. Tommy & Sharon are on the bandstand & we hope to see Y O U on the dance floor! For more details, please click
Or call Call Patrick @ 754-281-7202

Glendale, California - March 13th
The Irish Center of Southern California Inc. will hold its annual St Patrick’s  Celebration on Saturday 13th March at the Hilton Hotel. For reservations please call Mrs. Mary Dempsey at (626) 337 0075 or leave a message on the Irish Center’s line at (818) 238 0445.

Los Alamitos, California -1st Tuesday of every month
Friends of Ireland of Southern California Monthly Breakfast. Events are held on the 1st Tuesday of the month. Please call in RSVP to one of the contacts below one day in advance so we can accommodate you.
Barbara Walsh (714) 739-4195 Kathy Wisdom (714) 572-8277
Tom Kennedy (562) 425-2636 Jim O'Dea (626) 965-0307

Portland, oregon - 1st Friday of the month
Ceili of the Valley Society - First Friday of the month Céilís and ongoing Tuesday night Céilí and Sean Nós dance classes. Our season runs from October through June and next season we may be moving the dances to Saturday rather than Friday nights. For more details, please click

In these uncertain times. finding humour in the impact of a terrorist threat would seem remote. But the resilience of good people will always shine through. The following, sent in by Russ’ sister Renee attests to that.

Different Terror Threat Levels Around The World

The English are feeling the pinch in relation to recent terrorist
threats and have raised their security level from "Miffed" to "Peeved." Soon, though, security levels may be raised yet again to "Irritated" or even "A Bit Cross." The English have not been "A Bit Cross" since the blitz in 1940 when tea supplies all but ran out. Terrorists have been re-categorized from "Tiresome" to a "Bloody Nuisance." The last time the British issued a "Bloody Nuisance" warning level was in 1588 when threatened by the Spanish Armada.

The Scots raised their threat level from "Pissed Off" to "Let's get the Bastards" They don't have any other levels. This is the reason they have been used on the front line of the British army for the last 300 years.

In Wales, the plan is to distract would-be terrorists with the non-stop singing of Mae Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau. The Land Of My Fathers at all airports, seaports, railroad stations - and pubs.

The Irish have elevated their threat level to closing the pubs one hour earlier. Two more levels remain: closing the pubs one hour later and leaving the pubs open 24/7. Smoking will be allowed.

In Germany, the strategy to ward off any imminent terrorist threat is to have all Oompah bands in the country play the Winer Schitzel Polka imultaneously.

The Spanish are all excited to see their new submarines ready to
deploy. These beautifully designed subs have glass bottoms so the new Spanish navy can get a really good look at the old Spanish navy.

Americans meanwhile and as usual are carrying out pre-emptive strikes,on all of their allies, just in case.

And in the southern hemisphere...

New Zealand has also raised its security levels - from "baaa" to
"BAAAA!". Due to continuing defense cutbacks (the air force being a squadron of spotty teenagers flying paper aeroplanes and the navy some toy boats in the Prime Minister's bath), New Zealand only has one more level of escalation, which is "I hope Australia will come and rescue us".

Australia , meanwhile, has raised its security level from "No worries"
to "She'll be right, mate". Three more escalation levels remain:
"Crikey!', "I think we'll need to cancel the barbie this weekend" and
"The barbie is canceled". So far no situation has never warranted use of the final escalation level.

ED. NOTE: If you would like to make any additions to this list, we’d love to read them!