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A viral play in several waves by Ricardo – live in lockdown from Dublin


  1. Bono
  2. Sir Bob Gelding
  3. Greetin Thunderbird
  4. Special guest appearance by Nigel Fareigner
  5. Bonus special mystery guest
  6. HRH The Queen (in absentia)

Scene: The Clarence Hotel in Dublin.

It is a sunny Monday morning in early Spring in downtown Dublin and Bono is relaxing, scrolling on his Samsung tablet whilst sipping a decaf americano in the Mezzanine Bar of The Clarence Hotel whilst dreaming about investing in more tax-efficient investments in Lithuania, when in walks His Royal Holiness Sir Bob Gelding along with Greetin Thunderbird.

Bob: Oh hi mate! Mornin’ Paul. Fancy bumping into you here. It’s a beautiful day. 

Bono groans: Why is sponging Squarebob Spongepants in my hotel? What do yer want yer talentless gobshite? 

Greetin: How dare you? HOW DARE YOU talk to my hero like that? Do you know who you are tal—

Bono ignores Greetin: Who’s this eejit?   

Bob: Paul, my most altruistic friend, please just calm down. Please. After all the millions of Euros you have spent on this place, you don’t want to waste all that taxing effort by causing a ruckus and scaring all your customers and investors away. 

Bono: Okay, I’ll give yer 10 minutes as my Accountant is due to arrive soon. And don’t call me Paul. Only my closest friends and Financial Advisors are allowed to call me that. No-one else. 

Bob: Okay. Please forgive me. You seem on Edge. What do you want me to call you? Adam?  

Bono: Bono.  BONO.  BONO  yer dozey eejit.

Greetin: BONO? What kinda stupid name is that? 

Bob: Err, I think it’s the name of an ancient Celtic Chieftain who saved Ireland in 60AD from being invaded by a legion of Roman Tax Inspectors.

Bono: Jasus, will yer just get straight to the point? 

Greetin glareen: How dare you? HOW DARE YOU SPEAK TO MY FRIEND LIKE THAT? I’ll have you know he once had an audience with the Pope.   

Bono: I don’t care if he’s had an audience with the Head of the Dutch Ministry of Taxation. He is starting to—

Bob: Okay guys, please calm down. Well, you’ve heard about this coronavirus? Well, I was hop— 

Greetin pipes in giddily: Coronavirus? That’s just off Greece isn’t it? I remember having an all expenses paid month in the presidential suite of a 5 star resort on that idyllic little island last year whilst circumnavigating the Med in my personal, hand crafted, solid teak, ozone-friendly, zero carbon footprint yacht. I remember, with a heavy heart, in fact an even heavier heart  than when I read about that poor giraffe being killed in Copenhagen Zoo then chopped up for food for all the zoo’s carnivores in front of a load of innocent Danish school kids, three quarters of my crew abandoning ship as soon as we got to the harbour saying something about they couldn’t stand listening to my annoying, self-pitying drivel any longer. How dare they talk to me like that? How dare they not support my personal crusade to save the world? How dare—

Bono: Who on earth is this fecking eejit you’ve brought along with you? 

Bob: Sorry Bono. Greetin gets a bit carried away at times. She can’t help it, she’s Swedish. You know what they’re like as a nation for being hot-blooded, fiery, passionate and volatile. Just look at the cars they make. Volvo and Saab. These car just ooze crazy Vikings which go completely berserk at the drop of a cow-horned helmet. But she’s a good kid and she knows her stuff too. She’s seen the Northern Lights and last month she spent a weekend reindeer herding with a Sámi tribe in the Arctic Circle. Greetin is singlehandedly fighting to stop climate change. Without people like Greetin, we’ll all be bollixed in 10 years’ time.         

Bored witless already, Bono goes back to scrolling on his Samsung tablet when, with an eruption that would send shivers down the spine of Mount Vesuvius, he exclaims lamentably: Holy Tax Havens. Feck and bollix. Footfall in Lithuanian shopping malls has just collapsed all due to this fecking virus.  

Bob sycophantically: Ah, that’s grand Bono as it happily brings me to my request for a tiny, little favour from your truly awesome, philanthropic good self, if you could be so kind as to listen to my humble request.

Bono absentmindedly: First Georgia, then Crimea, then East Ukraine and now a shopping mall in some one horse town in Lithuania.  I bet Putin and his FSB stooges are behind all this. 

Bob: Bono? Sir?

Bono: Sir? Just at the present time, I could do without your smartarse quips. 

Greetin piously: How dare you? HOW DARE YOU address my climate changing comrade-in-arms like this? He has a knighthood from the Queen of England. Unlike you. So I demand you show Lord Bob some respect.

Bono lurches forward belligerently onto the edge of his Chesterfield armchair (which, according to the furniture salesman, once comforted the weary buttocks of the great Oscar Wilde) like an Irish Wolfhound upon being informed it resembles a shaggier and stupider version of Scooby Doo: I would never accept a knighthood from that tax dodging, blood sucking, billionaire parasite. I have my principles and would never betray my working class roots. And as for you yer—      

Bob goes down on bended knees: Dear, dear Bono, please, please, please hear me out. I beg of you. I want to launch a global appeal to raise money to buy protective equipment for all NHS members and I was looking to see if you could make the first donation so we could buy some much needed equipment for all the under-resourced nurses and doctors.  

Bono: INXS? What protective kit do they need? They haven’t toured in ages. Is your cuckolding mate Terence Trent Darby still with them? They must all be loaded so those tight gets can put their hands into their own pockets as far as I’m concerned.  

Bob: Bono, no— 

Greetin excitedly: Hey, BONONOS! They are wicked. I came across them on my recent, eco-friendly tour of Central Africa sponsored by Rio Tinto Mines. I stayed in some great 5 star hotels. I was treated like a Princess and was given some great gifts with my favourite being a crocodile skin handbag with matching shoes. And a beautiful doorstep made from an elephant’s foot. The leopardskin coat was nice too. Though I had to pay to use their Wi-Fi and all my evening meals but luckily I was able to use my new American Express Black Card. Did you know— 

Bob: Greetin. Shush, please. The NHS is the beleaguered National Health Service in the UK. Plus I would like to raise money for the HSE in Ireland.  

Bono: Right, if yer promise to leave within the next 5 minutes. I’ll donate €50,000 to this noble cause. But on condition that it is called The One BONO is stronger than COVID 19 Trust and it has to be set up in Switzerland.    

Bob: Well, I was humbly hoping that you could donate a bit more than that.  Erm, €1 million maybe?

Bono: Look things are a bit tight at the moment. You know all the slums in the banlieue of Paris, full of the downtrodden masses who have been trampled on, chewed up and spat out by the elitist French Establishment under Macron? 

Bob mutts irreverently to himself: Jasus, Mary and Joseph. Here comes another 3 hour sermon. 

Bono: These lost souls are my brothers. Every moment of every day I feel their crippling pain in La Place de Clichy. I hear their cries of cocaine-addled anguish in Grigny. The constant gnashing of decaying teeth in Seine Saint Denis. 

Bono starts sobbing whilst mournfully thumping his heart. Meanwhile, Greetin starts asking a drinks waiter how big the Clarence Hotel’s penthouse suite is and could she stay in it for free otherwise she’ll organise a mass student demo outside the front entrance before the week is out. 

Bono gently places his hands on the heads of Bob and Greetin: So I urge you both to reflect for a moment on their lamentable plight, as they struggle to survive life’s cruel vicissitudes from one day to the next, in a pitiless and materialistic society that simply does not care, as I pray for my banlieue brothers. Brother, sister, I implore you to clasp your hands in prayer.

A pause ensues with Bono in prayer and Saint Bob racking his brains, desperately trying to remember the words to Hail Mary, praying to all 12 Apostles that he is not asked to recite it.

Bono looks upwards to the heavens and raises his arms in supplication: Brother, sister, I beg you to give me an Amen.

Bono closes his eyes and piously does as he is told:  AMEN. 

Greetin turns to Bob and whispers: That’s a bit sexist? Marvellous Megs the Magnificent would never forgive me. 

Bob still racking his brains as he seeks divine inspiration: and, err, blessed are thou after swimming?? I’ll google it. Ah for God’s sake, my phone’s run out of charge… AMEN, err, who art in heaven?

Bono graciously: My children, you may sit up now. Can you feel my pain? My God, that was a cathartic experience. Give me a hallelujah. 

An open-mouthed Greetin stares at Bono thinking she would rather be reindeer herding. 

End of instalment 1