Local Man Disappointed by Taste of Real Beef

Castlebar – Shocked by the news that his long-time staple of Findus beef lasagne is actually 100% horse, local Castlebar man Pat Murphy (29) treated himself to a steak dinner at the 4-star Harlequin Hotel, only to discover to his chagrin that he doesn’t like beef.

Mr. Murphy tried to make the best of it, but knew beef was a poor substitute at best.

Mr. Murphy tried to make the best of it, but knew beef was a poor substitute at best.

“It tastes like a cow’s arse, to be honest,” sighed Mr. Murphy, as he looked miserably at his expensive rump steak. “I don’t know what I expected really. Just with all the fuss about it I thought I must have been missing out on something.”

“Maybe I should ask for a banjo so I can tenderise it a bit more,” he said gloomily.

In recent days, the nation has been shocked to learn that the popular rhetorical question “Where’s the beef?” is not actually rhetorical in Ireland. This has led to a great deal of soul-searching, and lasagne searching, as the public attempts to find the truth and the beef.

“It’s a complete and total surprise,” said Findus PR manager Art O’Hare. “Findus has been absolutely scrupulous in sourcing its quality products from only the most reputable firms in the Eurozone.

“We purchased the goods from a company dodging tax in Luxembourg which got its meat from a rural Romanian abbatoir.

“Actually,” said Mr. O’Hare with a frown, “when you put it like that I suppose it’s not a complete and total surprise that the beef was a load of old horse.”

The Romanian abbatoir claims the cows escaped in a small Lada.

The Romanian abbatoir claims the cows escaped in a small Lada.

Although it’s unclear how long this scam has been going on, Mr. Murphy reckons it must be well over a decade.

“I’ve lived on Findus lasagne since I was a student and I’d have noticed if there was a sudden change in the meat quality,” said Mr. Murphy. “But it’s always been of the highest standard – lean, tender, swift through the gut, you know?

“This beef stuff is just a lump of fat that sits there for days until you flush it out with Guinness.”

Mr. Murphy took us on a tour of his local supermarket and showed us the now-empty shelves where he used to purchase tainted products.

“There used to be hundreds here. Now they’re all gone,” he said with an air of profound melancholy. “I’d shut the stable door, but that horse has bolted.

“I should have kept a few in the deep freeze.”

The scandal has prompted a deep revision of many landmarks in Irish culture. The classic Kerrygold question, “Who’s taking the horse to France?” has now acquired sinister overtones, while the Rubber Bandits have released a new single, “Horse Inside,” which is currently storming the charts.

While many people profess to be disgusted, Mr. Murphy said that even in the week since the announcement there has been a growing underground trade in horsemeat from people like himself who have suddenly discovered they don’t like beef.

“Yeah, look, I mean, it’s a no brainer, right? You look at a horse standing next to a cow in the field. One of them’s a magnificent animal that’s nothing but ripe muscle and pride and the other’s a fat bitch sitting in her own shit. It’s like being asked to choose between Beyonce and Oprah – who you gonna pork?”

“Of course, Beyonce costs a bit more on the black market, if you know what I mean, but for a prime cut like that it’s totally worth it.”

"Horsemeat, cowmeat," said Mr. Murphy emphatically.

“Horsemeat, cowmeat,” said Mr. Murphy emphatically.

Although he refused to reveal the source of his contacts, Mr. Murphy said that it was relatively easy to import Pferdewurst from Germany and carne de caballo from Spain.

“It’s a disgrace, though,” he said bitterly as he revealed how costly it is to import meat from the continent. “All the good horses in this country are controlled by the rich – JP McManus, John Magnier, all those boys. I bet they sit there every night munching on fuckin’ Shergar while the rest of us have to make do with Bessie the cow.

“This country hasn’t changed since the 19th century. It’s like we’re still living under the Penal Laws. Even today, a poor man can’t afford a decent horse.

“Then we were made a present of it by Findus and the government took it away. It’s fuckin’ typical of Ireland that even when we do get a gift horse we don’t put in in our mouths because of how it might look.”

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