Mikie O'Loughlin: “We have our finger on the pulse of what’s relevant & needs to be talked about.”

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The RSVP and RSVP Live Showbiz Editor on his fascination with cabin crew, the things he couldn’t leave the house without, being the "designated Minister for GAA" on the RSVP team and how he represented Ireland at the Dance Excellence Festival in Los Angeles in 2007.

Someone you might be starstruck to meet?

I followed Prince William and Kate Middleton during their Royal visit to Dublin last year and, luckily for them, I was kept at arm’s length in the press pen. I am so intrigued by the Royal Family and I always have been, I would lose all sense of reason if I got to chat to them. I would not be able to follow protocol because I would be rambling so much and asking them 40 million questions. I don’t think I could keep my cool if I met Britney either. Hopefully their security teams don’t read this!

What did you want to be growing up?

I had my heart set on being a cabin crew, or an air hostess as it was known back then, as a child. I loved flying and I still do. I always have to sit on the window seat and having a ham and cheese panini and a can of Heineken is my idea of bliss. I observe the aircraft type and use the Flight Radar app to see where it has flown in recent days. The idea of wearing those glam uniforms makes me all warm inside. My friend Dáire worked for Aer Lingus and I constantly asked him questions about everything on the plane, from their rosters to how they cook the food and what they did on layovers. So chicken or beef? Anyone for a scratch card?

Favourite person you’ve interviewed for the magazine/website?

That is so tough because I have interviewed so many people who I admire and have grown up watching on TV and then there are others, some who I had never heard of before meeting them, that really surprised me. It is always a pleasure interviewing Miriam O’Callaghan because she is an icon, I loved the first met I got to chat to Anne Doyle (and not just because I won a bet against Jane Lundon and she owed me 20 Bounty bars) and getting Una Healy’s first shoot after her marriage break up at the time was a big deal.

Name the film you’d watch again tonight? 

The Devil Wears Prada, Angus, Thongs and Perfect Snogging, A Cinderella Story, Scream, The Lizzie McGuire Movie or any of the Harry Potter franchise.

First bar you’ll go to when things reopen?

I feel like I have already stereotyped myself something awful so far but, as a man of integrity, I need to be honest with so I will be off to The George and Fade Street Social in Dublin or Brogan’s in Ennis.

And what drink will you have?

A vodka and white in The George, a raspberry bon bon in Fade Street Social and a cosmopolitan in Brogans. 

Currently reading/listening to (podcast, audiobook etc.)?

I have a range of podcasts on the go, I love Davina Devine and Victoria Secrets’s Petty Little Things and Doireann Garrihy’s Laughs of Your Life is genius. I really related to her sister Ailbhe’s story of being obsessed with cash registers. I myself had an amazing range of toy registers growing up and a real one that my dad got me from a pub that was closing down.

What do you consider your greatest achievement to date? 

I represented Ireland at the Dance Excellence festival in Los Angeles in 2007 where I got to dance on stage in Disneyland. It was an unforgettable experience and, 14 years later, I still have some of the clothes I bought there! Getting through this past year has been no mean feat either. We, as a nation, were stripped of everything we knew and loved and the younger generation were really hit hard. And a year later, the younger generation are probably suffering most and will suffer the effects on a long lasting basis.

What is top of your bucket list?

To move back to Dublin, to be able to see my friends and family whenever I want and to see life return to normal. Oh, and, to have my honeymoon in Bora Bora!

What’s your favourite question to ask people?

I am the designated “Minister for GAA” in RSVP so I interview a lot of the high profile stars throughout the year. They are so used to being asked sports related questions and all things strength and conditioning and pitch performance so they get a big shock when they chat to me. I tend to ask the more personal things and what we really want to know like if they are married, if they use Tinder and what’s the craic like in the dressing room. But then it comes back full circle because I am an avid hurling fan so I can sting them with my sports questions too. 

In general, I ask people I meet what their middle name is. Something compels me to ask and then I usually forget so I end up asking again weeks later! 

Most overused word or phrase

I reply to texts and IM’s a lot saying “Perfect” or “brill”- they are better than a thumbs up anyway. I greet my friends saying “No news?” and I have been known to say “gorge” a lot, it is a versatile word that slots into a lot of everyday situations.

Social media platform of choice?

Instagram, obviously!

What could you not leave the house without?

My AirPods and a pair of sunglasses! My sunglasses are permanently glued to the top of my head and I usually walk everywhere so I have my AirPods in while chatting to someone on the phone, Paula or Blathin, listening to podcasts or doing dance routines in my head while my pop music playlist plays. 

2021 mood: My mood doesn’t tend to be great these days!

Favourite place to go on holiday in Ireland?

Lockdown has given me a new appreciation for West Clare. My friends and I extensively travelled the Wild Atlantic Way in the Banner County, taking Spanish Point, Doolin, Lahinch, Flaggy Shore and the Bridges of Ross. The Armada Hotel and Falls Hotel are fabulous nearby and Fiddle + Bow have amazing cottages with views of the sea dotted around North Clare.

Favourite place to holiday abroad?

Anywhere I can drink cans on an open top bus tour! I love relaxing in a sunny spot such as Gran Canaria where you lie out all day, chill by the pool and have drinks in the evening. Such an uncultured holiday but a brilliant holiday nonetheless. I went to Lisbon in 2018 and it is a city that is so underrated and often forgotten about, I would love to go back. I also love London and New York, I am a sucker for a good musical, I cried when I saw Les Miserables!

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