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Thursday, 22 November 2012


barking dog cartoon

I delivered groceries on a "Granville" bike when I was a kid - 9-years-old!  It was better than being a chimney sweep's urchin, I suppose.  Wasn't that young to be grafting? An after-school and Saturday job, but my God!!

On this anniversary of President Kennedy's assassination in 1963, I share this little extract from my book "Retail Confidential: 

"The reason I remember my age (9) when I worked at the Mace supermarket on the Glen Road, Belfast, is because I can answer that question “Where were you when JFK was assassinated?”   

On one of my delivery jaunts, I remember very clearly that I overheard a passing pedestrian tell someone else what had happened.  I knew it was fairly important news but my mind was preoccupied by the yapping dog behind the railings of a house in Fruithill Park. 

I was scared stiff and could not pluck up the courage to open the gate.  Luckily, after about ten minutes of terror, the woman of the house stepped out, called the dog off and beckoned me up the driveway.  I delivered her box of groceries, she gave me a half crown tip – big money in those days – and I scarpered before the dog was let loose again.   

Unlike the poor President, I had escaped with my life intact." 

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