Thats your man - whats his name?
Stone', shouted a work colleague on Friday morning,
as we opened our office for business in Castle Street,
Belfast. 'Dont let him see you looking', she
said, 'but Micky Stone is standing out side the
solicitors.' We all turned to look. Blurry-eyed,
we glance through the plate glass window over the
street at this figure standing side-on and dressed
in black with dark greying hair tied back in the
usual pony tail, and dark sunglasses resting on
his forehead. From a distance of fifty feet or so
it did indeed look like the notorious Michael Stone,
the loyalist killer who won infamy for attacking
the republican funerals of Dan McCann, Seàn
Savage and Married Farrell, the IRA volunteers killed
on active service in Gibraltar and who were being
laid to rest in Milltown Cemetery.
I went for a closer look the dark figure stepped
inside the solicitors office. The reaction
of some of my colleagues was not surprising and
there was certainly no love lost in their feelings
more they talked about him the more the anger grew
within them. 'How dare that bastard come into Castle
Street' - as we debated whether or not it was him.
I decided to approach him when he came out and ask
if he would be interviewed for the Blanket. My colleagues
were astonished and stood in disbelief as I made
my way over Castle Street to where 'Michael Stone'
standing. When I got to within twenty feet I realised
that it was not Stone. Disappointed, I introduced
myself to the Stone look-alike and had a brief conversion
and made my way back to the office some what disappointed.
But my work colleagues and I learnt a valuable lesson
- that if looks could kill we would have committed
murder before lunch.