Mad Tom is a well-known resident of BGB, the son of a long line of BGB eccentrics, all of them named Tom.
A riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma, stuffed into an outsize football shirt, Mad Tom grew up on a plot of land called Tom Mór's Field, not far from Aisling and NFATRs childhood homes. He was well-liked by his classmates; and his life-long eccentric behaviour saw him bestowed the (affectionate) nickname 'Mad Tom' in his early teens. Mad Tom is a regular sight on the highways and byways of BGB, screaming around in his Vauxhall Astra (imported from the North) allegedly fuelled with green diesel. During the summer, he has been known to work as a silage contractor, hauling around the fields of BGB in a John Deere with the same abandon as he does on the roads. The women of BGB are reputedly quite taken with his wild antics, and it's been suggested that there may be more than one Tom Óg about the place.
Family History Edit
"Tom Mór" was a giant of a man, supposedly 6'7 in his prime, and in his day looked like he was cut out of stone. Grandfather to Mad Tom, this small farmer (surely a misnomer - the size of him) worked on a plot of stony soil, now called Tom Mór's Field, for over 60 years, where he built a homestead; the same cottage in which Mad Tom now resides. He and his wife welcomed one son into the world, also named Tom. In time, the younger Tom would grow to be of similar stature to his father, though cruelly stuck for the majority of his adult life with the nickname "Tom Mór Beag". Tom Mór was of the Republican tradition; and it's widely known (but not often commented on) that he was the Officer Commanding of the IRA's BGB Unit during the Border Campaign. He was well-known in the parish as a kind and loyal man, with a queer sense of humour and a lucrative side business brewing poitín on the edge of his field. Not well-loved by the Gardaí, and not overly fond of them himself, Tom Mór and The Law took subtle but purposeful steps to ensure they did not have much occasion to interact.
"Tom Mór Beag" was similar in stature to his father, and growing up in the late 60s in BGB, was fully immersed in his father's business, as a farmer, a distiller, and a republican. The Memmehs of the parish will, when pressed, admit that in his youth TMB was a 'fine cut of a man', and his good looks and eccentric charm (and easy-access to high-grade poitín) made him a popular choice to be seen stepping out with at the BGB dances, while the fathers of the parish fretted terribly. Along with the rest of the IRA men of BGB, he opted to join the Provisional wing in 1969, with TMB duly appointed Quartermaster, a post he held for the remainder of his life. The Northern Command viewed the BGB contingent as headbangers and fantasists, and never tasked their Active Service Unit with anything more taxing than selling calendars in pubs around Christmas.
Tom seemed set up for the life of a bachelor farmer, until some time in the mid 80s, when he was seen cutting around town in a convertible with a fine young thing, never seen before in the parish. No one knew who she was, though some swore she had a Belfast accent. Tom wasn't seen again in BGB for a year, and when he returned, he had in his arms a small bundle; a baby boy. Our Tom. No questions were to be asked about Tom's mother or where he'd been, and by God none were asked. Tom Mór Beag carried on the life of a bachelor farmer, rearing his son as best he could. He gently dissuaded his son from taking up the family's republican heritage, and that particular thread came to an end. While he loved his son dearly, the folk of BGB allege that he was 'never right' after he came back. He died when Tom was still in secondary school; and the only remark he ever made to Tom about his mother was that he had inherited her eyes.
"Mad Tom" is 'our' Tom. He was born some time in the mid 80s (he is not sure of his birthday or where he was born) and grew up with Aisling and NFATR close by. He was well-known from his youth to be a bright and spirited young lad, and he was mothered by half the parish, on account of his mysterious, motherless household. Indeed Aisling, NFATR and GJ all recall him being a regular fixture at their dinner-tables when growing up. While his father was generally withdrawn and solemn, Tom was gregarious and adventurous; never known to be in a bad mood, even when he was battering people square-shaped while playing football with BGB Gaels. His eccentric behaviour saw him christened "Mad Tom" in his early teens.
Growing up the son of his father, Tom always had access to high explosives, and was prodigious at blowing stuff up in the woods and fields of BGB. His father reared him on the farm, and Tom is capable of driving anything, though it's not certain that he's ever passed a driving test. When Tom Mór Beag died, Mad Tom inherited the farm while he was sitting his Leaving Cert. Tom nailed the door of the cottage shut following this, and wasn't seen around BGB until four years later. Though he'll never admit it, he actually spent the four years studying theoretical physics in Trinity. He wrote an excellent thesis on momentum conservation in exothermic reactions, which was well-received by his supervisors. When he returned to BGB to work in the fields, a rumour went around that he'd been in the French Foreign Legion, a rumour he does nothing to dispel.
Tom is physically a replica of his father and grandfather, though in the place of his father's brown eyes, his are a dark, smoky blue. His physical presence is remarkable for someone who smokes as much as he does, but he keeps fit by playing Junior B and swimming in the ocean. The women of BGB find him a compelling mystery, and many have tried to solve him. No one ever will, though.