Sean Boyle: The Brandshees of Inisherin
EXT: A stone pub on a craggy, windswept Irish island. Brandgone Gleeson (Bran) and Consumer Farrell (Con) sit outside at a wooden table beneath a tattered GUINNESS umbrella staring out to sea towards the mainland. We hear the sound of distant shelling and sporadic gunfire.
Con: Why don’t you talk to me anymore?
Bran: I do talk to yeh. Sure didn’t I talk to yeh yesterday?
Con: You know what I mean. Talk to me; like, talk to me, talk to me…
Bran: I’m always feckin talkin to yeh.
Con: Not like we used to.
Bran: Talkin’s talkin.
Con: Oh, so you’re going to be an eejit again today, is it?
Bran: Amn’t I allowed to have a quiet pint on my own Con?
Con: Well don’t ask a man to come an buy your, your, razorblades, your beer, your cars and your, your biscuits like he’s nothin better to be doin with his feckin time!
Bran: I’ll ask all I want…and sure you do have nothin better to be doin with yer feckin time.
Con: I know I’ve nothin better to be doin with me feckin time, but there’s better things I could be doin with me feckin time than listenin to the way you’re talkin at me…it’s, it’s insultin, so tis…not like the olden days.
Bran: The olden days? You sittin there like a whatchacallit…what would you know about the olden days?
Con: You used to make me laugh and smile when ya talked and now it’s just…just shite is what it is.
Bran: Insultin?…Con, you’re only a gobshite who’ll buy anything at all I stick in front of yeh. Here, listen [picks up his fiddle]…I wrote this new jingle today for Vodafone Ireland.
[Proceeds to play a screechy, incoherent piece of dreadful music]
Bran: Tis just a rough, obviously. We’ll be addin in the voiceover tomorrow and by Wednesday there’ll be a brand new advert in the world…which wouldn’t have been there if I’d spent the week listenin to your bollox, Con Farrell.
Con: That’s what I’m talkin about…another shite tune…more of the drivel you fire at me every day Bran. I wouldn’t bother with it.
Bran: You’ll be buyin a new Vodafone GigaHome package by Friday so yeh will.
Con: I may well be buyin a new Vodafone GigaHome package by Friday, but that’s cos I need a new GigaHome phone package Bran…out here on the island…the reception…terrible, like.
Bran: I just eh…I just have this tremendous sense of creativity slippin away from me Con…and I need to spend the time I’ve left just gettin stuff out there, like…not thinkin too much about makin you whatever it is, laugh or smile or feel good or whatever…I’m sorry about it…I am, like.
Con: Are you dyin?
Bran: No, I’m not dyin…at least I’m pretendin I’m not dyin.
Con: But…then you’ve loads of time…to do something good like…to say something nice…something interesting…to me, like?
Bran: I’ve no time for chattin…for aimless chattin.
Con: Not for aimless chattin…for good, normal chattin…makin me like you and want to buy all the crap you’re sellin to me.
Bran: At a focus group the other night…two hours you spent talkin to me about the things you found in your little toddler’s shite…I’m only tryin to sell you and your missus nappies for Jayzus sake! Two hours Con, I timed it!
Con: Well, it wasn’t my little toddler’s shite was it, it was my wife’s shite, which shows how much you were listenin…
Bran: None of it helps me, do you understand? None of it…Helps me.
Con: All I’m sayin is you’ve become dull Bran…what can I say? You’re dull. And 2litre family-sized bottles of Fanta or no 2litre family-sized bottles of Fanta, I’ve just no time for dullness in my life anymore.
Bran: But you live on an island off the coast of Europe, what the hell are yeh hopin for, like?
Con: For a bit of joy Bran. A bit of joy in the heart. For you to brighten up my day just a little bit. Bring a smile to my face…that kinda thing. Like you used to…like you used to in the olden days. We used to say chattin with you was better than watchin the programmes on the telly. Now every time you open yer mouth, I want to throw the telly out the cottage window.
Bran: It’s about money Con. You’ve no concept of that yeh craythur. Money. I don’t need to engage you…sure haven’t yeh shown that yourself?
Con: [Getting angry]…How? How’ve I shown it? How in the name of God have I shown it Bran?
Bran: By buyin all me feckin stuff…it doesn’t matter what I chat to you about…I could say, “Con, go over there now and buy a dozen boxes of tampons to win a trip to the Canaries” and you’d do it…and you a man, Con. A feckin man!
Con: Is it a war you’re after Bran? Cos if it’s war you’re after, I’ll give you a war…just like the one across there on the mainland. You won’t see it comin…every month…every month from now on, I’ll cut off one of your beloved brand share points and throw them in your face. I’ll chat with another fella who’ll come along and talk decent to me, like…and we’ll see how ya like it then Bran…war it is so…we’ll see how you like it then…
Sean Boyle (pictured below) is a writer/planner/strategist/podcaster and host of “A PINT WITH SEANIEBEE’. A former head of planning at SRV/BAM, Sydney (1999 to 2003), Boyle went on to the Head of Planning role at Saatchi & Saatchi (Asia), then global planning director at JWT ad BBDO.