Visualise the scenario - President Martin McGuinness is guest of honour at the first formal dinner hosted by chief of staff of the Republic's defence forces, Major General McCann.
In accordance with protocol, General McCann will be obliged to propose a toast to Mr McGuinness, president and commander-in-chief.
Acutely conscious of Mr McGuinness's past and recent history, will there be one - or more, or many - of those present who will feel honour-bound to remain seated, or maybe even walk out?
If, to a man, they all stand and raise their glasses to their commander-in-chief, will they recall the stinging words of a former colleague and coach to an Irish rugby team - "Where's your f*****g pride?"
P F RYAN