Conor McGregor's next fight is two months away. That means the whole business will crank into gear before too long. To help agnostics through that tough, here we introduce the six different UFC fans you might stray across on the internet and in real life.
The psychological guru
This man sets great store by weigh-ins and press conferences. He gains so much insight from the hype machine that he barely needs to watch the fight. His conclusion is always that McGregor has psyched his opponent out.
He is inclined to regard every gobbet of bullshit that emerges from McGregor's mouth as an act of ingenious psychological warfare.
'He's inside his head,' he observes knowingly.
The bandwagoner who accuses other people of being bandwagoners because they began following the sport five minutes after he did
Notwithstanding his own relatively recent introduction to the sport, he heaps scorn on those Johnny Come Even More Lately's whose knowledge is apparently woefully deficient in matters MMA.
Full disclosure. This writer knows nothing about the sport of MMA and doesn't care who knows it.
The guy who gets to the mic at promotional events
The individual delivers his answer to the Gettysburg address while tanked up from the back of the auditorium at one those pre-fight hype machine events.
He prepares for his address by consuming large quantities of lager.
He must consume enough alcohol for his confidence to be in inverse proportion to his coherence. When he reaches this stage of inebriation he is in prime shape to contribute his two cents at a UFC event.
On reaching the mic, he will deliver himself of some dazzling bon mot along the lines of, 'Fuck off Jose, Conor's gonna batter ya, ya muppe' !!!
The guy who sounds like McGregor's adoring younger brother
It used to be said that the Irish department of foreign affairs sounded like John Hume's 'adoring younger brother'. If only everyone in the six counties could adopt the same attitude as John Hume then things would be so much better.
McGregor's fans on the internet show even more ardour. This state has been impugned for many things down the years - exporting its people, its shoddy health service, its tendency to fall into economic slumps every couple of decades.
More recently, it was impugned for being too slow to announce a homecoming for Conor McGregor.
The guy who spends a fortune travelling to Vegas
Irish people who make a great noise about attending their chosen sport 'week in week out' - well, League of Ireland fans - often lament that the great majority of their fellow countrymen are little more than event junkies.
Chief among the targets of their ire are those people whose interest in sport is only piqued in February and March when the Six Nations championship rolls around.
The man who postpones his wedding to travel to Vegas to watch 15 seconds of Conor McGregor is grouped among this dishonourable company.
The sensitive guy
Whenever an old style pugilist makes a Brokeback Mountain reference or a middle aged Gaelic football fan starts talking about late night chip shop wrestling, he is the first guy onto social media tearing into the unbelievers.
He tends to eschew reasoned defence of his sport in favour of ad hominem attacks on its critics.
At this point, it is probable he has engaged in thousands of twitter back and forths with Miguel Delaney.
The guys who followed the sport before Conor McGregor
The old testament UFC heads, these guys are the MMA equivalent of the 12,000 souls who were in Lansdowne Road for Ireland's 4-1 loss to Denmark in the 1986 World Cup qualifier in November 1985. Like Enoch Powell, they were Thatcherites before even Thatcher came along.
Names like Ken Shamrock and Randy Couture trip from their tongue with intimidating casualness and fluency. Their technical expertise causes the less informed to simply nod their head and tune out.
And not so much a fan but still part of the conversation...
The Marian Finucane contributor
Tune into the Marian Finnucane show to hear the sound of official Ireland having a chinwag. They greet the UFC phenomenon with some bemusement - 'what is it these kids are getting up to these days?' kind of vibe.
Of the contributors, they say they don't follow it themselves but tell Marian their sons do look at it.
Early on in the show, Marian will ask a remedial question about the sport which one vaguely aware person will be able to clarify. One panellist will express misgivings about the level of violence.
The segment may descend into amiable chortling after someone makes a joke to the effect that Micheal Martin might want to employ McGregor as party whip to keep recalcitrant backbenchers in line. Or something along those lines. Such jokes always go down a storm on the show.
Marian will conclude this part of the programme by saying 'well done to him anyhow'.