On Monday, June 27th, at about 17:03, upon the completion of the Leaving Certificate Latin Exam, a quiet will descend upon St. Conleth’s College which has not been ‘heard’ for about five years and ten months: for Oisín Power will have left the building. (And, no, we don’t whip out the future perfect tense just for anybody!). Yes, it has been a long, garrulous reign for the uncrowned king of diatribe, insinuation, invective, contradiction, conspiracy, sedition and the Dead Sea Scrolls.
Each Thursday, we personally endured no less than six class periods with Oberstleutnant Power and though we shortened our life span considerably, due to the pressure applied to our brain, heart and spleen, we also learned a lot and enjoyed the barracking barrage of biblio-babble immensely. Do we need to know the religions of every US President’s Vice President’s wife? Or that a Bulgarian vagabond princeling has a legitimate claim to the title of Roman Emperor? (Or is he Finnish?) Maybe not. But maybe the plight of the Auslandsdeutsche after WWII is worth the occasional tangential discussion, or, perhaps, the underreported flouting of Geneva on the Ukrainian side in the current conflict or, god forbid, a reappraisal of Reagan’s blue collar Democrat mass conversion.
These were the kind of conversations intitiated in class and the hallways and in hyperspace by Oisín over the years; often aided, abetted, moderated or contradicted by step soul-brother Evan. Perhaps not many LC points were secured for them en route, but certainly our knowledge was deepened and persepctive altered, and perhaps theirs, too … and it was fun! Well, Oisín’s talent for edgy cultural commentary has also been recognised and lauded outside the walls of No. 28, too, as his alternate history story Failure of the Falklands has been featured on the popular and respected Talkernate History Youtube channel. Hear the hosts’ enthusiastic reception of Oisín’s story above and read it in full here. Oisín will soon be gone from these hallowed halls but we will long savour the lingering echoes of his beneficial bombast, and eagerly await news of his further rhetorical adventures in halls and chatrooms and on street-corners further afield.