A normal friend will give you sufficient time to recover from illness to go drinking again. An Irish friend will encourage you to drink while on antibiotics because they’ve heard it gets you jarred in half the time! A normal friend will offer a shoulder to cry on when you’re having a personal problem. An Irish friend will question any issue you’ve raised and claim you’ve been watching too many movies where people have things called “feelings.” A normal friend will buy a carton of cigarettes and identify themselves as a smoker. An Irish friend will scrounge cigarettes off strangers on weekends while still demanding they be regarded as a non-smoker on weekdays. A normal friend becomes an atheist and stops attending any religious festivals they may have attended as a believer. An Irish person will stop believing in God, but still attend mass at Christmas and Easter “just in case.” A normal friend will keep in touch no matter what the distance is between you. Irish folks struggle to keep in touch with good mates within walking distance of their own house, relying on Facebook statuses to find out the latest details of your life. A common example would be “Deirdre heard on ‘The Facebook’ that Dermot’s getting married!” A normal friend will offer you endless amounts of food and drink upon entering their home. Asking an Irish friend for a snack is more likely to end up with them calling you lazy and scoff, “Sure, you know where it is, get up yourself and get it.” A normal friend attends all of your GAA games and cheers you on through thick and thin. An Irish friend plays for the rival club and hopes you get knocked out of the championship in the group stages so you have little option but to attend the rest of their matches for the rest of the summer. A normal friend passes on the latest trends in music so you can share the music together. An Irish friend criticizes your taste in music and has no interest in adding to his established playlist of Radiohead and Muse. A normal friend goes by the motto “bros before hoes.” An Irish friend might be kind enough to ask you if they can try for a shift. If they don’t ask, you’ll get the excuse, “Sure, I was locked, I didn’t know any better!” A normal friend will pull you to one side and have a word if they think you’re causing a scene. An Irish friend will allow the scene to go on as long as possible so they have an arsenal of ammo to slag you with for future reference. A normal friend will cease any mischief the second any sort of authoritative figure enters the scene. Your Irish friend will continue with their rambunctious behaviour, but stop just shy of getting in any sort of trouble that might stop them going on a J1 this summer. A normal friend praises your success in life. An Irish friend begrudges any good news that will ever come your way and questions why they haven’t received the same fortune.