The Irishman of Bradford

Andrew Patrick Michael O’Brien is a proud Irish man living in Bradford. 

Judging from his behaviour and the smell of alcohol coming from him, you could tell he’d drank quite a few cans of beer. When I asked him how many, he put a finger to his lips to indicate it was a secret. When I pressed him further, he held two fingers up, quickly changing it to four when I said “not as much as I thought!” Even though his words were slightly slurred, you could hear an Irish accent underlying some of his words. I asked him if he was Irish. He visibly swelled with pride, telling me he was from the west coast of Ireland; about his grandfather from Limerick who was apparently as tall as the sky; and his father who was no longer alive. I told him about how my old English teacher, an Irishman himself, pointed out to me that my name (which is Arabic in origin) also has meaning in Gaelic. 

As he bolted off into the distance to buy his next can of beer, he quickly shook my hand and exclaimed “You’re a lady!” He then proceeded to run or even moonwalk backwards, shouting and waving his hands at me so I would watch him go. 

How he managed to do it without tripping, I don’t know. But, like Andrew said quite aptly, it’ because “he’s an Irishman you know.” And he’s a jolly one at that.


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