In case you have been under a rock, Patrick Kielty is the new host of RTÉ’s The Late Late Show. He is the fourth permanent presenter of the programme – one of the world’s longest running late-night talk shows – since 1962.
According to the BBC, Kielty said he was “absolutely thrilled”. And that it was “a real honour” to take up the role.
As I sit and think about this news, I get a pang of sadness. One of the things we miss about Dad not being around anymore is the handle he’d have on this. And on what’s happening in world news, natural history and actual history. He had lots of opinions on things that happened 3,000 years ago! As well as the world of light entertainment.
On a Thursday night in Belfast
If fate had allowed, I can imagine he would be sitting in a Thai restaurant drinking Pinot Grigio. I would be sitting across from him chatting about this and that. Before we would get down to brass tacks:
What do you think of Paddy Kielty?Gerry
And the Late, Late?Me
I’d reply, just to be sure, sitting back, ready to laugh. All Dad would need is the odd prompt to come to life, with thoughts flying through his head.
Do you think it’s a good idea?Me
YEESSS!!! Isn’t it GREAT!!! They won’t know what to do with him – he’s smart, you know. I can’t wait. Here’s what I think. He’s too smart to be told what to do. He’ll behave himself for a wee while, and then he’ll get bored. Ooohhh, can you imagine? Can you imagine? Did I ever tell you he used to warm up for me on Anderson on the Box? He was mad back them; sure he still is, but sure, that’s half the craic.Gerry
What do you think he’ll do?Me
He’ll talk about anything – he’s got no fear. They need him more than he needs them. Just you wait until he starts talking about the North. They don’t care about the North, but he’ll go there. He’s not afraid to ask hard questions – and it’s just what the show needs.Gerry
Do you think he’ll last long?Me
C’mere til I tell ye, did I ever tell you the story about the time I was in Dublin? Anyway, the thing is, RTE is full of BBC boys from Belfast. They’ll keep him right. But Paddy’s smart. Sure, he’s been over the water for years. If he can survive “Love Island,” he can do anything!Gerry
Would you ever do it yourself?Me
Not at all, I wouldn’t be bothered with that – far too much work, but I’d take the money! They’ll pay a fortune for that.Gerry
Do you think he’ll be funny?Me
I think they are copying all the U.S. shows, so they’ll probably do sketches and skits. But really funny people never tell jokes.
Do you know I couldn’t tell you a single joke? I hate when people ask you to tell them a joke. A fella grabbed me in the bar last week and told me this big long joke. And do you know what, after 5 minutes, he forgot the punchline. Sure he was full.
Anyway, Paddy will tell stories and do a few one-liners – if he starts telling jokes, he’s finished. All the best comedians stop telling jokes, and that’s when they get really funny.Gerry
How do you think he’ll get on?Me
Sure he’ll have to go for the usual, but asides from that… Hmm, he’ll know loads of people from over in England. And he’ll feel obliged to bring down a few Nordies. Maybe a few Northern politicians – but who….Gerry
And the chat would go on the whole night. Stories would be repeated. Silly points would be made. As well as insightful and unique points, until the coffee was finished. And the wee waitress he insisted on calling “love” brought the bill.
With that, and a hefty tip, we’d make our way into the night. Until next Thursday and a whole new set of opinions!