A Wee Noggin - Paddy Whacker's Challenge

by Michael J. Solender

Padraig Rory Conner Murphy O'Shea was a machinist from Dublin who enjoyed a pint or two with his mates after grinding metal plates and tooling whatcha-hickeys and jiggly-gigs all the day long.

Paddy was a huge bear of a man, with giant forearms and out sized hands that could crush whole walnuts into a fine powder though he had one particularly strange physical unusual-ity that puzzled all who knew him; Padraig Rory Conner Murphy O'Shea had the most tiny head one could imagine.

His head was a might puny, superciliously tiny and just outright dinky. It seemed  to balance as a pea on his broader than broad shoulders. On the eve of celebrating their patron saint at the public house, one of his particularly cabbaged mates was bold enough to ask him about his cranial deformity.

Now Padraig Rory Conner Murphy O'Shea was a bit rat-arsed this evening himself and was amenable to sharing the tale that to this day he had never told before.

“I was a lad of 18 and down at the sea wall one fine morning after a huge storm the night before,” he started the yarn, “ I saw before me in the water a struggling maiden who seemed to be caught up in the fishing nets, I dove in and with me knife in me teeth I wrestled and cut her free and brought her to the dock.”

He continued, “She was the loveliest creature I'd ever seen with golden locks and a fine form, but she was a mermaid and built like a fish from below the waist; she told me I could have one wish for saving her life and as she didn't posses the proper equipment, I was prepared for the next best thing and I asked her for a little head instead.”