Saturday, September 24, 2022

the last book I ever read (We Don't Know Ourselves: A Personal History of Modern Ireland, excerpt eighteen)

from We Don't Know Ourselves: A Personal History of Modern Ireland by Fintan O'Toole:

In a weird coincidence, the same seventeenth floor of the Grand Cypress was occupied at the same time by the great icons of a new form of global Irishness, the rock band U2. They were about to launch in Florida what would come to be regarded as the most spectacular stadium rock show ever staged, the Zoo TV tour. Even weirder is that one of the daring innovations of the show was a video confession booth where fans could look into the camera and tell it their most intimate secrets. Some of these would then be streamed during the concert. While Ben Dunne was raving to escorts about the Catholic Church and Confession, his compatriots a few doors away were about to launch a parody of the same sacrament.

When the hotel security staff heard that an Irishman was going mad on the seventeenth floor, they assumed that this must be typical rock star behaviour. They contacted U2’ s security staff, and they all made their way up there. In fact, the band members were down in the lobby, preparing to go for rehearsals. When another sex worker that Dunne had called arrived, she was surprised to see three police cars and an ambulance outside the hotel, but even more freaked out when Bono walked out past her. ‘I’ve always been a fan’, she recalled, ‘but it hardly seemed the time to introduce myself.’ There was another odd echo of the past – when Bono told U2’ s manager that a guy named Dunne had been arrested at the hotel with cocaine, they both assumed that he must one of the Dunnes who had introduced heroin to Dublin.

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