Reasons why I consider myself as Northern Irish

Northern Ireland: British or Irish

Strictly speaking anyone from Northern Ireland (NI) are regarded as being British. Depending upon family circumstances you may have dual citizenship to the Republic of Ireland and Great Britain: A person from Northern Ireland may hold a British and an Irish passport. It is important to note that no matter what passport (British or Irish) a person from NI has they are regarded as British citizens in a court in Northern Ireland. Some laws are passed by Stormont (the NI assembly elected by the people of NI) but the majority have been passed by Parliament (thus the UK government) and all of these laws are enforced in any court in NI.

For religious reasons people in Northern Ireland may identify themselves as being either British or Irish. Most of the Protestant population would say they are British while most Catholics would say they were Irish.

I, however, would identify myself as being Northern Irish.

A photo of the fairly new Titanic building. No matter which angle you look at it, it looks like you are looking at the ship.

A photo of the fairly new Titanic building. No matter which angle you look at it, it looks like you are looking at the ship.

Northern Irish: Why?

Religion does not bother me in the slightest. At the end of the day that is your personal belief, not that of others. I try to avoid the topic of religion most times for this reason and only talk about it with close friends and family (if required !).

British people speak like British citizens, unsurprisingly, whereas Irish people speak like people from the Republic of Ireland.

I, however, speak like a person from Northern Ireland: I consider myself as Northern Irish because I do not speak 100% Irish or 100% British.

Northern Irish car registrations

If you buy a car from NI you will have a Northern Irish number plate. Not a British number plate, nor Republic of Ireland. Northern Irish is all over NI.

Belfast bap

There are some things that are only produced in Northern Ireland. The Belfast Bap is one of them. What is a Belfast Bap? It is a piece of soft bread enclosed in a hard crust. They are quite round, almost the size of half a football. Neither British or Republic of Ireland have Belfast baps.

This adds to a cultural reason as to why I call myself Northern Irish.

Do other people from NI identify themselves as Northern Irish?

Yes. The number of people calling themselves Northern Irish is growing. In 2009 27% of people who live in NI said they regard themselves as Northern Irish.

Being Northern Irish is a happy medium so I like to say where I am from, literally. NI so Northern Irish.

Reference

  1. Life and Times. (2009) Which of these best describes the way you think of yourself? [Online] [Accessed on 10th April 2013] http://is.gd/N3zrLO

Horse-meat in the UK, Ireland and Europe

For those of you who read this blog outside Europe (thanks for making this global!) you might have heard about the whole horse-meat scandal in Europe. If not, an explanation is given below.

Horse-meat is not bad for you

Some parts of Mainland Europe eat horse-meat happily whereas most people in the UK and Ireland see horse-meat as a ‘no go meat’ for culture reasons. Horses are seen as real pets and not as food. Culture is fascinating.

But the problem with horse-meat, in a nutshell, lies with the labels on foods. 100% beef burgers have up to 100% horse-meat in them. Horse’s get different medications, some of which can be harmful to humans, which need to be regulated. Having said that, some experts in the UK have said that a person would need to eat 500 grams of burgers a day to be infected.

You are what you eat

Although this saying is inaccurate (because you are what you digest) it got me thinking: we do not really know what is in our food. Government’s do not do enough to regulate the food industry. Why? Here are one, of many, reasons:

  • Next time you’re in the supermarket have a look at the content. Look at the amount of salt and sugar in our food. If the government really wanted to help with obesity and lifestyles they would get a tighter control on this stuff. You can run your body into the ground if you eat too much salt, or sugar. Some government’s do, however, offer guidelines but this does not reduce the volume of salt and sugar in our foods.

Food varies in price. How come lower quality food is mostly bad for you? Does this mean poorer people are more likely to suffer from health problems? This is not fair, yet this is the case.

What can I do about horse-meat?

You can’t do anything about the supermarkets and producers of these products. But you might want to consider getting stuff locally. If it’s local you have a greater chance of buying real products. Local produce is a little more expensive but you are likely to know where something has come from.

We really do not know what we eat. Although this is worrying, you should try to take as much control, on your part, as you can. One of the most important things to do is to cook your own sauce. Buy the ingredients yourself, get a lovely cookbook and knock yourself out. You can control lots of things this way — including salt and sugar. In fact, cooking from fresh ingredients allows you to have salt/sugar free meals.

Personally speaking, I cook from fresh ingredients. I find it relaxing, especially if I have coursework or exams. Don’t get me wrong, a cheeky chip is sometimes nice as a treat. But remember to enjoy your body. Love it, feed it with fresh (fruit and veg), tasty nutrients. Don’t overload it with rubbish. Salt, for example, will clog your arteries and will put a lot of strain on your heart because your body retains more water when there’s excess salt in your body.

Do you have anything else to add? How do you recommend a healthy life?

(7) Three points…”The Inbetweeners”

Post 7:

Here’s the first (post) of (hopefully) many random topics: Film 4 The Inbetweeners

  • Funny – genuine laugh out loud moments (can’t write the abbreviation, can’t stand them)
  • End of an era – no sequels etc
  • Huge boost for Channel 4 (United Kingdom company) and its associates i.e., film 4
Post 7, over and out, thanks again