A Gay Old Time in Dublin, Ireland This Week


An advertisement for the Bingham Cup (via flickr user dufspix) which begins tomorrow in Dublin, Ireland.

The BBC reports: “The Bingham Cup is in its fourth year and is being hosted this time by Dublin-based rugby team, the Emerald Warriors. Organisers hope the tournament will promote rugby as an all-inclusive sport which everyone can play, regardless of sexuality. ‘People when the hear the word gay and rugby in a sentence they tend to react, there is an immediate ‘those two things don’t belong together’,’ said organiser Nick Costello.”

The city’s 25th gay pride festival also begins tonight and is set to last for 10 days.


  1. Derrick from Philly says

    Does that sign say only “80 matches” for “800 fags”? You see, GIO, this is why I never expected to find an intimate partner in life. And you called me “depressing”. No, honey, those odds are frickin’ depressing.

    Now, if a “fag” was a cigarette…well, then, that would be a bargain….’cept in North Carolina: they have civilized prices.

  2. Daniel says

    The sign reads “800 fags. 80 matches.” Wasn’t that actor from Grey’s Anatomy thrown off his show & sent to rehab for using similar language? What do the word police have to say about this one, hmmm?

  3. Leland Frances says

    I believe in each individual’s right to call him/herself whatever they wish, but this mud smears us all. The Q-word remains debatable enough [and I don’t remember any evidence that Mark Bingham ever called himself that publicly] but “80 fags”?!!!

    Play your games, boys, but grow the fuck up in your use of negatively-reinforcing labels.

  4. Zeke says

    I’m totally with LELAND on this one. The “Queers” part didn’t bother me so much as it seems like a reclamation of a less controversial word but the addition of “fags” pushed it right over the top for me.

    Why is it that some men, evey gay men, seem to feel that the only way to be masculine is to adopt the worst traits of machismo?

  5. Zeke says

    Although, I think they were making a double entendre of “800 cigarettes, 80 matches” as would be a common expression in Britain. British humor is famous for its playing on words.

    In retrospect I think LELAND and I took it a bit out of culture and context.

  6. db says

    Didn’t Mark Bingham live in San Francisco? I’m pretty sure, if he did, he would have called himself “queer” at one point or another. That said, the “fags” bit crosses a line with me.

  7. rudy says

    Yup! That crosses the line of laughing at oneself to casting aspersions on the community as a result of self-loathing. Buying into bigotry does not reclaim lost pride.

  8. JT says

    I’m with Leland…God, how I wish I were with Leland!…This is just plain wrong. “fag” didn’t become common parlance in the UK or Ireland for gay people until well into the ’80s and it can be every bit as offensive there as “poof” or “poofter.” Yes, they are a couple clever turns of phrase, but they’re still offensive when put up in bit, public, billboards.


    Boys, thanks for showing your cultural ignorance. Fag doesn’t have the same weight in Ireland as it does in the USA – in fact queer is much more offensive to us. Before you go smarming in our faces, how about you ask an Irish person? And yes, it’s a play on slang too (cigarettes=fags), but I mean how dare Irish people have a sense of humour that doesn’t involve toilet jokes, right?! The majority of Irish people would think it was just a good pun.

  10. Leland Frances says

    Thanks, Bored, for confirming for us that the sign was ill-advised regardless of which hate-word one focues on. As for which word the man for whom the tournament is named might have used, here are excerpts from his letter to his teammates when they were accepted into the mainstream Northern California Rugby Football Union a few months before he died on Flight 93:

    “When I started playing rugby at the age of 16, I always thought that my interest in other guys would be anathema. I loved the game but knew I would need to keep my sexuality a secret forever. As we worked and sweated and ran and talked together this year, I finally felt accepted as a gay man and a rugby player. My two irreconcilable worlds came together.

    We have the chance to be role models for other gay folks who wanted to play sports but never felt good enough or strong enough. More importantly, we have the chance to show the other teams in the league that we are as good as they are. Good rugby players. Good partyers. Good sports. Good men.”

    Note: not good “queers”; not good “fags.”

  11. kn in Loboro says

    Just to add one more to the European perspective, the word Fag is not offensive here… when I hear it used it just makes me laugh at the American “Wannabe” using it, usually a spotty faced chav.. it’s funny! It’s a joke in Ireland. You’ll be telling us not to eat Faggot and Peas next.

  12. Rory says

    The word ‘fag’ is much less offensive here in Ireland where it’s in everyday usage to mean cigarette, and as a gay slur, is seen as ‘movie talk’. The ads (there’s a series of them) are also designed to look like the government warnings on cigarette packets. Add to that the fact that the Irish have an extremely liberal attitude to ‘bad’ language, and that Irish humour is almost totally based on ‘slagging’, (especially between men) and you’ll find that most Irish people would see those ads as fairly innocuous.

  13. Tony B says

    As an American who was there, I can assure you that the signs were not taken as offensive, by any of the participants that I talked to. And they were absolutely everywhere. I applaude the Emerald Warriors Rugby Club for marketing this tournament so heavily. Pretty much everyone in the city of Dublin knew about the Bingham Cup.