In editing our Rugby Nerds piece today, I was struck by a strange realisation: Conor O'Shea has an intense relationship with his earpiece. Of all the images of O'Shea archived on Google Images relating to his tenure at Harlequins, nearly all feature O'Shea in some pose with his earpiece quite prominent. Going even further, most of the earpiece photos feature O'Shea adjusting his earpiece. Do photographers in England simply turn their cameras upon him in anticipation of the moment he reaches for the earpiece - or have Harlequins equipped him with an earpiece that does not match the size of ear and/or is consistently itchy? Furthermore, has Conor O'Shea rebuffed their IRFU's flirtations simply because of an inability to develop the earpiece as a staple of Irish rugby coaching communication? (Declan Kidney, I presume, wouldn't be spotted dead wearing an earpiece) Now I realise most of the photos of O'Shea are taken during matches, and the earpiece is an necessary tool for his job, but look at the images below and tell me the earpiece isn't essential to the iconography of Conor O'Shea, rugby general.
A close look at the earpiece. It seems hi-tech, aerodynamic and with direct access to his brain.
Check out the rugby general pose.
An ear itch.
Another ear itch.
A warm weather ear itch.
Unsuccessful one-handed earpiece adjustment leads to two handed earpiece adjustment.
Rocking the earpiece and mobile phone combo.