They say the best way to fight terror is to show that you are not afraid. That is exactly what Mornington’s lawn mowing community has done in the wake of last week’s cyber attack on local lawn mowing merchant Paul Berrill. A local group, calling themselves Mornington Lawnmowing Militia (MLM) has hacked the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) in retaliation to the random attack on Mr. Berrill’s livelihood.
Mr. Berrill’s site, www.paulberrill.ie was hacked by the computer wing of ISIS, the United Islamic Cyber Force, at a time when business should be brisk. Springtime sees the lawn mowing services industry enter its peak period.
“We should be smelling freshly cut grass around here but after the hack I can’t reserve a spot online to get my mower blades sharpened. I mean I could just go down there myself, physically, but you run the risk of the shop being closed and that’s a waste of everybody’s time.” – Cian Brannigan, anti-Samba Festival campaigner, Bettystown.
“I could just get Charles to cut the grass without sharpening the blades I suppose. In times of war you have to make sacrifices. Charles likened it to the Blitz. But it wouldn’t be fair on the grass. You wouldn’t cut off someone’s head with a blunt blade would you? We have standards in Bettystown. Before you know it you’d be out protesting with the anti-water charges brigade. And that simply wouldn’t do.” – Abigail Villiers, Rotary Club fund raiser, Bettystown.
The ISIS attack has caused a split in the East Meath Riviera along the lines of established wealth vs. the noveau riche vs. plebeian. The landed gentry have set their gardeners to work on their front lawns with scissors while hanging signs on their ride-on mowers to inform passers-by how they have been affected by the Islamic assault on their village – UNABLE TO SHARPEN BLADES/MAINTAIN LAWN DUE TO ISIS ATTACK – KEEP CALM AND CARRY ON.
The push-mower owning class are in a quandary; they could cut the grass but worry that those further up the social ladder would know they’d not gotten their blades sharpened and see them as nothing more than uppity peasants, which they do anyway.
Then there are the lawnmower aspirant class who would cut the grass regardless of social graces but have their hands tied by the shortage of mowers brought on by the ISIS attack, namely by persons from the problem estates planted there by Drogheda Borough Council in the 1970s. Out to make a quick buck, these people have been physically hiring out mowers before going door to door offering to cut lawns. Such a mixing of the species has caused moral panic and a run on the local Keirinsis alarm systems shop, which perhaps is just what ISIS wants.
“It’s a travesty no doubting about it. Harvey Keitel himself was here in Mornington a couple of weeks back filming and says he to me ‘You know what pal? There’s something missing in this town. I can’t put my damn finger on it but something don’t seem right.’ Then it hit me. He should’ve been hearing the hum of lawns being cut and breathing in the sweet mix of sea air and freshly cut grass. It’s that time of year already. Damn you ISIS!” – Patsy O’Keeffe, Bettystown Tennis Club grounds man.
Patsy is not alone in noticing the effect that ISIS has had on the community. Local bird watcher Wilf Peregrine-Stockton has noticed that some migratory species of birds have been bypassing the area on account of the lack of gardening being done in the wake of the ISIS attack.
“By this time of year I’ve normally penned a letter to The Irish Times noting that I have seen the first willow warbler or cuckoo of the season. Some bastard in Wexford beat me to it last year and though I’ve been putting in the hours this year I expect this ISIS business has put paid to that. It would make one want to start one’s own Jihad.” – Wilf Peregrine-Stockton, retired bank manager, Old Mornington.
It is outrage like this that has seen a group pertaining to be Mornington Lawnmower Militia respond in kind to ISIS. The group, claiming to act on Mr. Berrill’s behalf (though without his consent or his permission), has taken the ‘an eye for an eye’ approach by hitting the Arabs where it hurts – the ISIS Department of Gardening and Horticulture (ISISGAH). The disruption caused by the MLM hack caused a floral competition to be cancelled as well as hundreds of people not receiving a change of venue message regarding the Annual ISIS vegetable bake-off in Raqqa. A statement released by ISISGAH has condemned the cyber attack and called for discussions through an intermediary.
The MLM responded to the plea by releasing a statement of their own.
“If it’s a fight they want hay it’s a fight they’ll be gettin’. They’ve messed with the wrong people.”
Updates as they come in.