With sporting success comes a certain amount of public recognition . In Ireland a cyclist who competes on National teams representing their country will be recognised locally or sometimes further afield by those with an interest in cycling . A GAA star however , is recognised by every man , woman and child in their county . When they walk down the street they are greeted by a constant stream of acknowledgement . Men will nod their heads and say ‘Howaya’ , women will smile and say hello whilst children point and shout out at their hero .
When Sean Kelly walks down the street people say hello as if they know him well , and he replies and always has a relaxed word for everyone . It’s a great way to handle the situation .
When Tipp Hurler John Leahy was at his peak , walking down the street in Clonmel it was not unusual for mature grown men to shout out across the street ‘ Go on Leahy !
A recently retired Hurling star has a different way to manage the situation . Whenever he gets a wave or a hello from a stranger he gives a demure wave or polite hello . However when he meets someone he does know he makes both hands into the shape of two handguns and fires .
Hence , whenever anyone in county Waterford says that they met Dan the Man , the reply given is ‘ Did ya get the guns ? ‘