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Taoiseach Enda Kenny has ditched the traditional bowl of shamrock and presented US President Barack Obama with a bowl of fiddle player Martin Hayes's illustrious, curly hair.

Kenny handed over the bowl of Hayes's hair, the national symbol of Ireland, at a gala dinner in the White House yesterday afternoon celebrating St. Patrick's Day. Many were surprised at the change of gift but agreed that it was a great hit with the US President.

Following the reception in Washington DC, Barack Obama spoke of his delight at the gift and praised the Irish people for their resilience during these tough economic times.

"This is a great honour! Every year I get a stupid bowl of shamrock I chuck straight into the bin so this is a welcome change. I have known of Mr. Hayes's hair for some time now, sure he lived in the states for many years!"

"I must thank the Irish people for this gift! I know times have been hard but their resilience it admirable. I put their emergence from the recession down to Hayes himself and his uplifting playing. I hear Donald Trump wants to deport him from the US if he gets elected but I'll help him out."

Taoiseach Enda Kenny said Martin's hair was a more accurate reflection of where Ireland is now, especially as The Gloaming seem to be gigging so much right now.

Hayes himself said he was delighted to donate his hair but said that he's feeling the chill and that it'll take some years to get his hair back to the way it was.

"The hair was my signature look! It took years to perfect the shape and texture but it's worth it when I think that Obama has it in a bowl on his mentlepiece. Who else can say that? Apart from Bin Laden of course but sure he's dead!"

Obama said that the hair will get great use outside of sitting on the mantlepiece: "Michelle loves it too. I might even let her put it on!"


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