Hello, world. I’m MacDara Conroy, and this is my blog.


Tag: personal

Weaknotes for f/e 21 December 2019

I’m still not quite sold on the utility of these weaknotes when my blog already pulls in tweets from the stream of consciousness of my daily life (of which I care to share) but I suppose there’s some worth in sitting down to take stock, and see what’s stuck from the previous days (or weeks). As for this past fortnight? Mostly depression about the awfulness of the UK general election. That and I’ve hardly seen the sun come out this month. More…


Weaknotes for w/e 7 December 2019

Lots of work this week, plus a visit to the doctor and a trip to IKEA. Not a lot of time for much else. I’m still watching The Irishman, as it happens, but it’s not unusual for me to watch films in chunks over days so I wouldn’t read too much into that.


Weaknotes for f/e 2 November 2019

This sudden change of seasons hasn’t been great for my health the last couple of weeks. And it is most definitely a new season: winter in Ireland starts in November and don’t let anyone ever tell you different. More…


Weaknotes for m/e 5 October 2019

So I let a month go by. That’s why I went with ‘weaknotes’, after all. Bullet points required here, I think — just the highlights, the most remarkable that I didn’t already tweet or blog. Here we go. More…


Weaknotes for w/e 31 August 2019

Today is Blog Day (3108 = BLOG) and I have little to say. It was a week that did not go as planned. But not all surprises are bad, as I did get the Unwound box set I ordered earlier this month in yesterday’s post. Here’s looking forward to a few days a week from now to unwind with it.


Weaknotes for f/e 24 August 2019

Nothing to report from the two weeks previous to this one just gone. I was ill for a few days over the big wrestling weekend in early August (TakeOver, SummerSlam and the G1 Climax final, as if you didn’t know) and the non-drowsy decongestant I got for my sinusitis messed up my sleep pattern completely. So it’s mostly a blur. It simultaneously feels like a lot less and a lot longer than the actual time that’s passed. More…


Weaknotes for w/o 4 August 2019

After my previous tribulations, I finally got Webmentions (or at least pings between my own entries) to display on my posts. That involved a lot of trial and error to find the right PHP code to display comments in WordPress, which is a lot more difficult than you might imagine. More…


Weaknotes for w/o 28 July 2019

In the middle of another long work stretch, eight days that ends this Wednesday evening. But it also includes a press screening on Tuesday so it’s not all bad. I’m looking forward to having a couple of days off to unwind later this week. More…


Monthnotes for Q1 2019

So, I dropped the monthnotes ball for a while there, didn’t I? But anyway, what’s to say? Xmas was Xmas. I don’t remember January. February was more fruitful than expected for the month also known as Freelancer’s Bane. March was more of the same. More…


Monthnotes for April & May 2018

April was quiet enough. I enjoyed WrestleMania weekend, even if I wasn’t moved to write much about it. My Twitter thread is here, though you might need the context of the show itself to follow along. As always, the NXT TakeOver show was the highlight.

As I mentioned previously, April saw a few actual trips to the cinema for me, to see Rampage, Lu Over the Wall and The Breadwinner, the last of which is one of my favourite films of the year thus far.

I started upping my rate of movies watched in May, which I’ll elaborate on in a separate post. I’ve also been watching more streaming TV as of late. More…


Monthnotes for March 2018

My second feature for Bandcamp Daily was published mid-month, this one on a selection of bands exploring new directions in grindcore. Again, it’s not a definitive guide, nor meant to be one; it’s a selection of artists across a spectrum that have caught my attention over time, and which fit the brief. I’m very happy with how it turned out; cheers to my editor Jes Skolnik for their work in that regard. More…


Monthnotes for February 2018

I already covered the beginning of February in my previous notes, and there’s little to report for the rest of the month. Time flies; sometimes there isn’t much to show for it work-wise. And sometimes the weather slows the country into shutdown mode. So let’s turn to some personal projects. More…


Monthnotes for November 2017

November was a bullet-point kind of month:

  • Enlarged Heart Radio has been revived for the winter, with two shows this past month, numbers 20 and 21. I’ll probably have another one up before Xmas, provided my weekends aren’t too hectic.
  • I saw and reviewed Battle of the Sexes and Suburbicon for Thumped. I also attended screenings for three 2018 releases (or they are on this side of the Atlantic, anyway). My notes on those are just that at this stage, but expect my thoughts in the new year. More…

Monthnotes for October 2017

I should be writing about October, but since the first of November has passed, I must note that it’s 16 years since I started this blog. It really doesn’t feel that long; a decade at most. I suppose it’s true what they say about time seeming to go by faster as one grows older.

Anyway, I don’t really have much to say about this anniversary other than I’m glad I picked things up again this year, even in the piecemeal fashion that I have. It’s good to carve out a space for oneself in the increasingly walled garden of the web. More…


Monthnotes for September 2017

So, an eventful September as predicted.

The biggest news, both work-related and personal, from the last few weeks is that my Bandcamp Daily feature on Ireland’s heavy underground was published.

It’s my highest-profile writing project to date, and only happened because I decided I had nothing to lose by sending the pitch. I’m not exactly brimming with self-belief (the term ‘imposter syndrome’ was created for people like me) but this has been a big boost of confidence. More…


On Chris Cornell

Chris Cornell@P&L

Soundgarden were my band. ‘Black Hole Sun’ came on MTV some time in the early summer of 1994 and I was transfixed. Before that moment, ‘rock’ was a big ugly thing to me, for older kids who drank in the park or hung out at the Wellington Monument with candles and baggy clothes when Kurt Cobain topped himself. So this was a strange feeling, hearing that song, with Chris Cornell’s soulful voice and Kim Thayil’s colourful guitar lines, alluring and scary at the same time. I didn’t even hear the album Superunknown till months later, when I got a CD player for Christmas. I’ve probably played it hundreds if not thousands of times since then. I still have the original CD. More…


Weeknotes #818-820

Not a whole lot to report from the last few weeks:

  • My reviews of Lady Macbeth and Mindhorn went online. I’ll have one for The Red Turtle later in this month. I won’t have one for Alien: Covenant this week, since I appear to have slipped off the Fox press list. My press screenings calendar is clear for the time being.
  • I still have a lot of music promos to listen to. Also, I went to my first gig in forever the weekend after Easter, but I didn’t write about it.
  • I blogged this list of SST artists still going today. For no particular reason other than that I was curious about it.
  • I left my bicycle in the shop for a long-delayed service at the end of April. Turns out I’d buckled the hub of my rear wheel what with all the potholes Irish Water have left around town since last October, so a whole new wheel was in order. Once I got it back I took advantage of the good weather to ride out to the Cooley Peninsula. But my second trip, yesterday in fact, ended abruptly when I ran over a nail on the cycle path. Result: one exploded inner tube and one shredded rear tyre. So my bike is currently back in the shop. Sigh.

More current updates via my Twitter account, as always.