My Desperate Optimism: Bob Gallagher

Ireland - Dublin

Which living person do you most admire?

I’m in the process of trying to admire myself – after having gone through tolerating, forgiving, and accepting. 

What is your current state of mind?

What Nikki Minaj would refer to as ‘bossed up’.

Which words or phrases do you most overuse?

Other than ‘eh’ ‘ehm’ ‘mm’ and ‘like’ punctuating sentences like machine gun fire, an exclamation of ‘who cares?’ combined with an eye-roll so over the top that I briefly worry if my pupils will ever return from my skull.

When and where were you happiest?

Rarely and hardly anywhere but I associate joy with being outdoors.

Where would you most like to live?

New York.

What do you most value in your friends?

Humour and honest responses.

What is your most treasured possession?

My health.

Who are your heroes in real-life?

Anyone I meet who impresses me so much that I can’t help but adopt something of their influence into my life I would consider a hero. Not so much their actions as the way they have about them or their way of thinking. This quote from Emerson is a good reference point for me as to why I admire people. “Men imagine that they communicate their virtue or vice only by overt actions, and do not see that virtue or vice emit a breath every moment.”

What is your most marked characteristic?

Gallows humour and what might be politely described as a ‘strong’ nose.

What is your motto?

Maybe this accurately describes a pattern of behaviour more than it’s been a prescriptive motto but Beckett’s ‘try again, fail again, fail better’ suits my desperate optimism.


Share Your Story


  • Great Britain

    Homecoming: Karen Cogan

    Your pal says: that a pull is just a pull and a pull only pulls because it wants to be somewhere it isn’t. Let the pull pull you, she says cause it’s telling you where you need to be. Soon as you can be.
    Read More
  • Ireland

    Artist of the Light: Roisin Fitzpatrick

    I'm in Ireland now due to Covid-19, but would normally spend half of the year in New York on exhibition (including a solo at the Consulate General of Ireland in New York in 2011).
    Read More
  • Belgium

    Standing by the Sea: Saoirlaith ni Bhroin

    An-nasc go deo is an fharraige, idir me fhéin agus laethanta órga m'óige. Is cuma pé áit ina mbím, is mór an faoiseamh dom seasamh cois cladaigh mar go gcuimhním láithreach ar Éirinn.
    Read More


Follow Us