One of the potential "safe places" in which O'Farrell could have left the memory card is a cooking pot in which he often boils the noodles. He thinks that he removed the pot from his kitchen cabinet and - believing it entirely empty - threw the noodles into the pot and began to boil them in hot water, mixing the tiny chip around in the food before adding a bowl of frozen vegetables which he had preheated in his microwave oven, and the sachet of flavouring that comes with the convenient foodstuff.
As O'Farrell chowed down on his standard late evening meal, he didn't merely eat a tiny piece of plastic and metal. He ate 18 music albums by his favourite artists and two by bands he'd gone off a bit, as well as hundreds of other songs he enjoyed - depending on his mood - along with eleven ten second videos, a hilarious text message conversation between himself and his closest personal female friend (whom he describes as "very bubbly"), countless photographs from recent parties, and a specialist's appointment to ascertain whether or not the nerve twinge just below his navel is a hernia. Having missed the appointment, O'Farrell has decided that he'll hold off to see if the twinge gets any worse. But now, he may never learn whether his intestines have ruptured - if even just a little. And if they have indeed ruptured, is there now a little memory card peeping out of the stomach wall?
The Central Statistics Office has revealed that every year as many as eighty memory cards are inadvertently added to stews, stir fries, soups or other dishes by individuals in the 18 to 35 year old demographic. However, Dr. Allison Seevers of the CSO admits that the figure is somewhat skewed due to one clumsy telecommunications employee.
"We know of one young woman who works in a Vodafone outlet in County Clare. She likes her salads which she eats behind the counter, she's a bit disorganised and she is surrounded by the technology. As a result, one of those memory cards goes through her at least every few weeks." Dr. Seevers allows herself a chuckle before she adds: "All you can eat data."
|Photo by Irene Chaney|
The statistics are cold comfort for 41 year old Charlie Travers, who brought "a tobacco pouch, a packet of skins [slang term for cigarette papers] and a quarter [ounce of hashish - a concoction which mainly comprises antidepressants, boot polish and processed marijuana or cannabis resin]" to a weekend party in a Connemara cottage two years ago. The tobacco pouch also contained the episode finale of the ultimate season of the hit American television series Lost. Charlie believes that the double episode was rolled into one of the many joints that were enjoyed in the rented accommodations over the course of the weekend. Having followed the television series religiously, Charlie has since resigned himself to the fact that he could watch the episode finale if he really wanted, any time he liked. He's heard it wasn't that good anyway. He says he'd prefer to be known as that "guy who's seen all of the series, except for the very last ep." But for how long can Charlie dine out on such stories?