An excerpt from ‘My Completely Accurate Account of my Adventures in Ireland’
Came the time when Big Jim McCoullagh wrestled a bear.
At ‘The End’ (the bar where Ben Burgis and I had taken to drinking) a huge brown bear wandered in one night. Where it came from, I cannot say, but it was in a mightily poor mood, like it had lost a fight. It wandered in and one good roar later, even the former Yakuza had cleared the bar. We stood outside, marvelling at the situation when Big Jim McCoullagh appeared looking to get tight. Now big Jim was a mighty man, a good 6’8″ and 280 lbs. Ben had once shocked me by fighting Jim to a booze filled stand still. But now, he was looking to his favorite bar and wondering why we were all hanging about. After an explanation of why we had been turned out, Big Jim replied “Tis no bear, tis a fat man in a fur coat, and I’m goin’ t’throw him out!” Despite our protestations, Jim ventured into the bar and then came a raucous goin’s on. After a time, the police arrived to find Big Jim asleep atop a passed out bear that had too much to drink. To this day, we talk of what a determined man with his blood up can accomplish, even against a bear. The bear itself lived out back of the bar, peacefully, until the Boys from County Hell came looking for a match. But that’s another story,
– Les Rout from ‘My Completely Accurate Account of my Adventures in Ireland’