People have hailed one of the Tommy Tiernan Show guests on Saturday night as ‘one of the best interviews yet’.
Tommy was face-to-face with the visually impaired athlete Dr Sinead Cane whose honesty won the hearts of the nation.
The Guinness world record holder admitted that she hasn’t always been the biggest fan of the comedian.
Dr Cane said she disliked jokes in Tommy’s stand-up that were at the expense of disabled people.
‘I’ll be honest with you, from a few years ago I wouldn’t have been a big fan of yours. I suppose I have warmed to you now, I see empathy within you and I suppose everyone in society is different,’ she said.
‘Even though I didn’t like the jokes, it did bring awareness to disability and a discussion.’
She said it was important for people to realise that ‘not all disabled people agree’ and while some people may laugh at jokes, others might not find them as funny.
‘Some people like to be called a person with a disability, other people prefer to be called a disabled person.’
Later on, as they touched on the subject of romance, Sinead laughed as she confessed it’s never ‘love at first sight’.
Tommy, a twinkle in his eye, said: ‘I’m glad you made a joke about something because I have a few in mind I want to get off my chest.’
Dr Cane goaded him to tell her the joke with the Navan man urging her to say if it was offensive or not’.
Sinead, whose father is also visually impaired and mother totally blind, had mentioned earlier that her parents had met in London.
‘The joke that came into my head was did they just bump into one another?’
The athlete laughed and said: ‘I’ll ask them that next time I’m talking to them!’
‘Was that okay?’ Tommy asked.
‘I’ll let you off on that one.’
In the engaging interview, Sinead talked about training as an athlete with a visual impairment.
It was emotional viewing when Dr Cane, who has a PHD in bullying, revealed that she had been bullied in primary and secondary school for her disability.
‘It’s hard to believe, it’s the strangest and saddest thing that a child going to school is bullied by other children because of a visual impairment,’ Tommy said.
The Cork woman replied: ‘Well there’s some strange people out there and people don’t like difference.’