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« Stoptober: the mystery of the missing evaluation | Main | State of a nation »

Alcohol may have been consumed

This week's Burning Issues dinner in Dublin ranks as one of the most enjoyable Forest events ever.

It was a private event for 14 people but the chemistry was great, there was lots of laughter and hardly a lull in the conversation all evening.

The format of these occasions is pretty simple.

One, book a private dining room in a good restaurant with easy access to a smoking terrace (heated and covered).

Two, invite guests for pre-dinner drinks on the terrace. Let the booze flow then sit down for dinner.

Three, introduce the guest speaker to kick start a discussion on a given topic.

Four, bring other guests into the conversation in order to generate a lively roundtable discussion.

Five, ensure there is plenty of delicious wine on the table throughout the meal.

Six, when dinner is over withdraw to the terrace for further drinks and debate.

Seven, express genuine surprise when a member of staff tells you it's gone midnight and asks you (politely) to pay the bill and leave because she and her colleagues would like to go home.

Guests on Wednesday included two journalists (three if you count the former ambassador who is now writing a column for a national newspaper), a senior public affairs consultant, a libertarian dentist, several free marketeers, Forest's John Mallon, plus students from Trinity College and University College Dublin.

Speaker was Chris Snowdon (above) who talked about 'The Nanny State We're In'. Unfortunately there's no official record of what he said because, according to one guest:

"I think we must have all had a fair bit of wine because most of the recordings I have from the dinner are very choppy and full of people changing the subject."

That's how I remember it too but, somehow, it worked.

Below: The morning after the night before ...

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Reader Comments (2)

Was I really there?

Friday, September 29, 2017 at 15:33 | Unregistered CommenterJohn Mallon

"Speaker was Chris Snowdon (above) who talked about 'The Nanny State We're In'. Unfortunately there's no official record of what he said..."

LOL!! ..sounds like a good time was had by all:-)

Tuesday, October 3, 2017 at 5:47 | Unregistered Commenterjredheadgirl

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