Donald MacInnes

Donald MacInnes writes Tales from the Water Cooler, which can be found every Saturday on page 2 of i. And, although a financial near-imbecile, he writes a weekly column in The Independent’s Money section, also on Saturdays. He writes regularly on a broad range of subjects in i’s Freeview section and occasionally fills in on Simon Kelner’s daily column when emotionally up to it. @DonaldAMacInnes

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Conor Grimes ended up providing the voice of Gerry Adams (centre) for six years

Donald MacInnes: Ireland does it her own way when the local undertaker passes on

Having just flown in from the island of the emeralds, my celtic batteries are sitting nicely at 100 per cent. Although we spent most of the weekend in Donegal, we bookended our trip by staying with friends in east Belfast which, those of you familiar with the demographic kaleidoscope of the city will be aware, could not be further, religiously or politically, from the island's picturesque north-west.

Donald MacInnes: Our ideal home on a hill is the first kill in house-hunting safari

So now the story can be told; now the cat, unlike Erwin Schrödinger's theoretical subject, can exit the bag.

Tales from the Watercooler: Can you bear to be boring?

Often, a news story’s worth can be dictated by our mood at the time of reading it. If your Saturday glee is pronounced, you may not be too fussed about another banker salary revelation which, on a wet Tuesday morning, may have you grinding your teeth to a fine powder.

Donald MacInnes: How I'm still showing dogged determination in my quest for a pet

What do you call this? I disappear for two weeks and the place goes to pot. Look at the mess in here! Empty packets of Wotsits, half-eaten Ginsters and a mysterious pile of popped bubble wrap. Would you carry on like that in your own home? Didn't think so. We run a tight ship here. No room for mucky pups.

Nawaz Sharif sacked his guards over a peacock incident

Tales from the Watercooler: Are your peacocks at risk?

Those of you with a loyalty card to this little section will recall that it’s a place where I select a couple of stories from the week’s news and combine them into one delicious starter with which to begin your i meal; an entertaining, literate vol-au-vent, if you like.

Donald MacInnes: So what would you prefer - £108m or some fish and chips?

It is with a heavy heart that I take up my pen for the latest instalment in my quest to be treated as something other than a pretend financial journalist. My brow is thus currently corrugated due to the fact that the Euromillions jackpot was won last Friday by one Neil Trotter, 41, who is (was) a car mechanic from Coulsdon, south London.

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