During the pandemic, Cork’s most famous millionaire snob, Reggie from the Blackrock Road, was brought to life from the pages of a spoof Irish Examiner column when writer Pat Fitzpatrick began filming himself as his alter ego in weekly videos that went viral on Twitter. Now Reggie is on a mission to help Ireland’s nouveau riche live like a true Cork one percenter through his new show, Reggie’s Guide to Social Climbing, which runs at The Everyman from March 8 to March 19.
What are the tell-tale signs that someone from Cork is nouveau riche or from old money?
Furniture and Barbour coats. If these are new, you’re talking nouveau riche. You don’t buy Barbour coats or furniture – you inherit them.
What was your first ever job?
Going into the solicitor’s office on the South Mall to hear him read out the old man’s will (€47m and a village in Slovenia). It gave me a valuable lesson in hard work – avoid it all costs. The solicitor tried to give me some investment tips, but I put a stop to that with my classic shutdown line: ‘Says your man who buys his shirts in TK Maxx’.
Have you ever seen anyone spend money in a way that shocked you?
My brother spent good money on a mobile home in Castlegregory. The family was disgraced around town. My sister even lost her parking space at Sunday’s Well Tennis Club.
How have you adapted to rising energy costs at your mansion on the Blackrock Road?
I leave all the lights on at night so the people passing on the 202 bus can look in and say, ‘That fella must have loads of money’.
What was your best ever investment?
My 75-ft yacht. It’s a perfect getaway in the summer, because Crookhaven is full of loud, Dublin social climbers with about as much class as a greyhound in a Liverpool jersey.
Do you still carry cash?
I don’t carry anything else. Honestly, I don’t know what people are doing with bank accounts and paper trails – you’re just giving the Revenue an advantage. My bank is a McWilliam sailing bag; I can get €15m in used fifties into that.
What was your biggest ever financial mistake?
I started a cryptocurrency with my Kerry neighbour. It was called YerraCoin. When anyone asked if it was worth anything, we’d give the stock Kerry answer, ‘Yerra, it is and it isn’t’. Turns out it isn’t.
Are you a spender or a saver?
It’s hard to tell. My accountant, Scobie Comerford, is back in the white-collar unit at Mountjoy after his latest misunderstanding with the Revenue (he forgot to carry the one.) I have a team of financial experts managing my affairs in his absence. They went to minor schools around Dublin like St Michael’s and Gonzaga because they couldn’t get into my alma mater, Pres. I ring them every now and again to get an update, but I have to hang up after 30 seconds because I’d rather get a drill into the eye than listen to a posh Dublin accent.
Are you worried about a decline in property prices?
Not really – my €6.2m-mansion on the Blackrock Road was a €6.1m-mansion when I started writing this sentence. (I’m talking about the Blackrock in Cork, obviously, not the cheap knock-off version in the so-called capital.)
What three things would you not be able to do without if you had to tighten your belt?
What would I be doing with a belt? All my clothes are handmade in a tiny village in Italy, which I happen to own. Honestly, half your questions are very unsuitable for people like myself.
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