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.