I had hoped to ride out the rest of my time here on a wave of sunshine, lollipops and rainbows, but then something came up – namely, my hackles. On Monday, I received this as a private message:
Dear Linda An Irish friend of mine just pointed out to me that you mentioned me in a blog. I have now read this and i would like to point out what i actually said to you. I said i lived in Daugavpils and Lived with a Belarussian woman for 5 years and now i am Living with a Latvian woman. Never once did i use the word doing. Of course i realise why you use those words as you like to be controversial and get a reaction from people. I was hoping you would be at the last internations meeting where i would have announced this publicly. I await your public apology on your blog. Of course i will be writing to the internations body to report this matter .
Meh. Potato/pot-ah-to. Much as I dislike threats and demands, in the spirit of sunshine, etc., etc., I decided to let it slide and ignored the message. The post in question was written way back in March. Old news. Then, yesterday, this comment was posted on my blog:
A Public message to Linda O Grady.
A friend recently pointed out to me that you slandered my name on your blog on March the 30th.
I am the Irishman you referred to in your blog regarding the Internations meeting. Firstly i want to publicly state that you are a LIAR. The conversation was exactly this. I was living in Daugavpils for 5 years with a Belarussian woman and now i am living with a Latvian woman. At no time did i ever mention that i was doing a Russian woman and i am now doing a Latvian as you stated in your blog. Of course i realise why you make controversial statements it is to get a reaction from people. I demand an immediate retraction of this slanderous accusation on my name and a public apology. As a proud Irishman i am ashamed of the fact that you are one of our own.
And yes, believe it or not, he signed it. Fine. If you want an apology that badly, you can have it. Although I probably should advise you to be careful what you wish for in future.
First of all, I’m sorry that the Irish education system seems to have failed you so completely. While I’m not in the market for any new students, here’s a freebie – in English, the personal pronoun ‘I’ is always capitalised. I could list your other offences against the English language, but I’m kind of busy, and a 5-year-old Latvian could probably do it just as easily. (You can look up ‘slander’ in a dictionary.)
I’m also sorry that when your “friends” read a blog post about a lecherous old expat in Riga, they automatically assume it’s you. I certainly never named anyone. Even more bemusing is that you agree with them. But the most bewildering thing of all is that you then seek public recognition of the fact. Still, it seems like you’re in good company – if my granddad had behaved the way some of the men here do, I’d have had him neutered.
I’m sorry that you don’t understand blogging, or writing in general for that matter. Blogging, like many other forms of writing, is subject to a little creative licence. Or did you really believe that every Latvian man I’ve ever met is called Jānis? You did, didn’t you? Bless your (probably mismatched) cotton socks…
I’m sorry that you couldn’t figure out how to post your comment on the correct post. Instead, you posted it on a totally unrelated post written almost a month later – probably confusing the hell out of anyone reading it. Luckily for you, I noticed and published it here. You can thank me later.
I’m sorry that I fail to see any of the pride you mentioned in your comment. All I see is a desperate, rather pathetic, bid for attention, and a failed attempt at intimidation. I’m assuming you were egged on by the
worm friend in your ear. If they ever do a Latvian remake of “Mean Girls”, you should put yourselves forward.
And finally, I’m sorry that in the final weeks of this blog, I’ve had to deal with (and subject my readers to) this nonsense. As anyone who actually READS the blog will know, I’ve put up with my fair share of trolls, bullies, bitches and backstabbers while in this country, and I had hoped I’d seen the last of it.
Well, I think that’s about all I’m sorry for. I hope that the heartfelt nature of my sorrow shines through. I suggest that you go back to… well, I guess you probably call it a life, and let me spend my last few weeks in Latvia in peace.
Sunshine, lollipops and rainbows, everything that’s wonderful is what I feel…