Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Good Thing My Name Isn't Erin

Since I don't really have an ethnicity that I identify with, I'm not one to make a big deal at all out of St. Patrick's Day. True many of those ancestors who came to the U.S. practically destitute came from Ireland and Scotland, but I've never really thought of myself as Irish.

Perhaps it's because the small community where I came from never made a big deal out of ethnicity or maybe because we were Protestants and didn't settle in a parish with a lot of other Irish, but we just didn't note the Gaelic background.

As I got older, I realized that what I thought to be hillbilly influence from the Kentucky hills, actually had its basis in the Old World. Some of the tunes that Grandad played on his fiddle were Gaelic-influenced. And potatoes complimented nearly every meal. Though there were some drinkers in the family, most of them were alcohol-shunning Baptists.

Have I covered all the stereotypes? Oh, wait. Yes, there's a certain pugilistic nature to my people and we have a nasty stubborn streak. Ethnically related? I think it's been more of a survival technique.

So do I have anything to say about St. Patrick's Day? And if not, why am I writing this? Well, to answer that last question, it's because I don't think you want to hear a detailed description of the dream I had last night about locked doors and bathroom stalls (really) or about my planned field trip to get my belly button waxed (not really.) Okay, maybe really. It's just not that appealing to make my belly button into a talking butt that's hairy.

Maybe I haven't recovered to the extent I thought I did from yesterday's ague. Nevertheless, I am honoring the day with the wearing of green earrings and a green ring that Garbo got out of a gumball machine. For her part, Garbo went to school wearing a green monkey tee shirt and that fuzzy neon green pimp hat. MathMan, contrarian that he is, wore green yesterday and gave me a frowny face when I mentioned that he should have saved that look for today.

Hey - don't blame me if you get pinched, MathMan.

I wouldn't mind a green cookie, if you have one. But I digress. There probably won't be any green beer or corned beef or cabbage. I might make potatoes, but that's hardly cause for comment or celebration. It's so very ho hum at our house.

I do have fond memories of a couple of St. Patrick's Days. There was March 17, 1984....oh, um, okay - I better leave that one alone. Then there was March 17, 1993 or 1994 when my coworker Bonnie shouted Erin Go Braless instead of the correct phrase into her phone at AARP. She was talking to one of our aged volunteers and was attempting to show the rest of us administrative staff in the cubicle corral just how hard of hearing the guy was. I laughed so hard that I woke my boss Bruce who was asleep in his chair in the office adjacent to my desk. Unfortunately, Bruce, a very large man, had been tipping back in his chair, snoring softly as he slumbered. My guffaw set him to snorting and trying to right himself in the wobbly chair but it was too late. Both Bruce and his chair toppled over onto the floor, causing a loud crash that brought everyone running.

I'm not sure Bruce ever forgave me for waking him like that. Oh, well. It can't be all green lollies and shamrocks, I guess.

Happy Saint Patrick's Day to those of you who do wear the green, kiss the blarney stone, meet the road where it rises......we've gone way beyond you getting the idea. I know.

22 comments:

  1. I still feel a little guilty when I was at a bar one St. Paddy's Day and I secretly coveted a button that said, "Fuck me, I'm Irish."
    I thought it was a little more direct than those 'kiss me' buttons, and at the time (after 6 shots of Irish whiskey and 6 beer chasers) I rather enjoyed the frank nature of it.

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  2. No fair I read all the way to the end hopping for you erring and a bra of some sort.

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  3. Sounds like you're feeling a bit better.

    If you find any of those green cookies, save one for me! :)

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  4. And the same to you!

    (You didn't make green eggs and ham for breakfast? What kind of mother ARE you?)

    :P

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  5. As someone who also never really embraced being Irish I too wore some green today. When my relatives got here some 200 plus years ago they arrived from Ireland but in all reality they were of English descent (we think) Owens is not such an Irish name ya know! We too were southern, baptist and non drinkers. I like to think that I am personally making up for all of the non drinkers in my family whilst I sip on my red vino in the evening.

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  6. I recall that my father's mother was a Dooley (my father was orphaned in childhood). I salute to that sometimes when I'm enjoying a Guinness, my very favorite brew.

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  7. There is always a huge St. Patrick's celebration at a pub in Birmingham (Innisfree.) They started at 6:00 this morning serving eggs and green beer. They will go until 6 tomorrow morning. I'm just too damn old for this kind of stuff. I'll drink my gin, eat some corned beef and cabbage, and wish for some Irish luck.

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  8. Well Happy St. Paddy's Day anyway.. Hope you are feeling better. It sounds like you are.

    Take care, Thanks for the laughs.

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  9. Whoa...backup a little. I AM DYING to hear about March 17, 1984!!! Has to be a good one. :)

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  10. American whites are the majority of Irish descent. War of Independence of the United States may also be concerned with this point. :)
    What is Really Healthy-Health Blog
    Humor & Fun World-Funny Blog

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  11. Happy St. P Day. That sounds funny. P Day.

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  12. Poor Bruce!--LOL! :) I guess that's what you get for sleeping at work! :)

    Well, my hubby's Mom's maiden name is Malone (Mary Malone). So I guess I'm Irish by marriage. Plus Iwanski and I visited Ireland a few years ago. Plus I do have the "fondness for the drop" on occasion. :) So yes, I do celebrate St. Patty's Day! :)

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  13. At least I have an Irish (and Scottish) name.

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  14. I'll pass on the kissing of the blarney stone once that I saw that they swing you upside down and then lower you down to the stone. Plus I heard the town kids pea on the stone at night and laugh when the tourist kiss it. Eewwww...no thank you.

    Happy Happy Slainte!

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  15. Your St. Patty's Day reminiscence was the best ever. Erin go Braless, indeed!

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  16. I ate pavement today, does that count as kissing the blarney stone?

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  17. Your cultural heritage is not important to me, just hope you had a good day today. God knows you deserve one!

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  18. i'm not irish, but my last name is as irish as can be, and i still get a little nauseous and green around the gills when i think of the ex-husband i got the last name from. that counts, doesn't it?

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  19. I've been wearing my gray pajamas all damn day.

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  20. The corned beef I had for lunch didn't settle well, so you were probably better off skipping the whole thing. I did wear green panties though.

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  21. I love your vivid descriptions of your old workplace. Sounds like a dream job, eh?

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  22. When did St. Patrick's Day get to be such a big deal? I wore green pants ... by accident. I'm not Irish, and I think it's a little weird to honor a Catholic saint in my very public school which is over half African-American and Latino. But that's just me. My kids are 1/4 Irish, and they both wore green. Ed is 1/2 Irish and since he was driving in the car for 14+ hours on Tuesday, I suspect he was turning a little green.

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