Five things you may not know about Mick Wallace
In the mire after his 'Miss Piggy' comment in reference to Fine Gael backbencher Mary Mitchell O'Connor, we delve deeper into the life of the man in pink, Mick Wallace.
It's apologies all round today from Wallace after getting caught on tape labelling Mary Mitchell O'Connor as 'Miss Piggy' whilst having a chinwag with fellow independent TDs Shane Ross and Luke 'Ming' Flanagan.
We already know of his history in the construction industry, with NAMA, in favour of legalising prostitution and cannabis and his passion for football; but on probing Wexford's most popular man a little further we've come up with some interesting facts.
Fallout with the church
A rebel since his youth, Wallace loved nothing better than to argue with priests after Sunday mass in Wexford. He demanded to be allowed to stand up in church and question sermons. Of course, this didn’t go down to well with the men of the cloth, so he turned on his heel and never went back.
The vineyard owner
Everyone is, by now, familiar with Wallace’s passion for football but in close second comes his love of wine. So much so, that back in 2005 he purchased a vineyard in Italy at a time when he began to develop an Italian Quarter in Dublin city.
The love affair with Italy’s fine wines, delicious food and their football began in 1990 when Wallace showed up for the World Cup.
Apart from importing bottle after bottle of wine for his own sampling and his boom time business venture, Wallace has also allowed the influence of the Italians rub off on his beloved Wexford Youths sides by regularly bringing his teams to Turin for tournaments.
Scarecrow summer job
Prior to his developer days, Mick spent five consecutive summers working as a scarecrow in his native county. With his garish pink ensembles and his wild, scraggily hair he scared raven and rodent from many of Wexford's famed strawberry fields. We reckon if he's ever booted of the Dáil he has a number of years left as a top, top player in the Scarecrow Premier League.
His love of pink has further Italian influence.
You may have thought that Mick was camping it up around the Dáil in loud pink shirts, jumpers and t-shirts or that he’s trying to make a statement. Well, that he does, but there’s more to his pink fashion passion than meets the eye.
If you have ever seen Wexford Youths play, the League of Ireland side, you’ll notice their away kit is bright pink. Apparently, it is a reference to a kit worn in the 1920s by Juventus. And guess who is also Juventus season ticket holder?
He’d get a haircut before joining Fianna Fáil.
In an interview with BusinessandFinance.ie in 2005, Wallace admitted that he’d rather get a haircut than join the Fianna Fáil party. Six years on and neither has happened.
"Go to a tailor and get yourself a suit, go to a barbers and cut your hair, and join Fianna Fáil," was the advice Wallace said was given to him by a contractor.
"I wouldn't look great in a suit and I certainly wouldn't look good in Fianna Fáil," he said at the time. "If I really had to choose, I'd cut the hair."