Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Paddy's Day!

So…show of hands…Who took the day off to drink green beer today? And, okay, so who is taking tomorrow off to recover from all that green beer consumption?

Not me. Never have. And at this rate, probably never will. Drinking beer (green or otherwise) all day and all night long is an activity for the young. We older folk just can’t hang like we used to.

Oh sure, give me a beer or two and I’m fine. Giving me three or four is okay – as long as the glasses become a whole lot smaller! More than that, and I’m in trouble. Hangovers at my age are simply not pretty.

I can remember years ago going to a downtown bar at lunchtime with a co-worker who wanted to experience a touch of the St. Paddy’s day celebration with her friends who had taken the day off. We were only taking our allotted hour, but we gamely joined the party in progress at noon.

And, yes, by the time we arrived everyone was pretty much hammered. I hadn’t seen that much partying since I tailgated as an undergrad at Ohio State on football Saturdays. And this particular St. Paddy’s Day was probably only 2-3 years away from my any-excuse-to-have-a-beer college student mentality – but I still couldn’t see being hammered by noontime on a Thursday, St. Paddy’s Day notwithstanding.

I don’t know. When did celebrating St. Patrick mean just going out and getting drunk? I think it originally started as a religious celebration…but then, I suppose some people think drinking mass quantities of alcohol is a religious experience. Or maybe it’s just the aftermath when they call upon God to help them with their achin’ heads and queasy stomachs… Or, even worse, those who have overdone it to the extent where they’re, uh, “bowing before the porcelain god.” (Yuck.)

The one thing I’ve attempted to do every single year of my life – or at least since I started grade school, anyway – is to wear something green on March 17th.

When I was a little girl I remember my Nanna teasing me that she’d have to pinch me if I didn’t wear green on St. Paddy’s Day. First of all, I was a little shocked that my Nanna might pinch me. But even worse, I didn’t want any of my classmates to feel obliged to pinch me either! So, even though green is not really my color, I scoured my closet and dresser drawers for something that would do. In grade school, since we wore navy blue plaid uniforms, it was a little tougher to work in the green. But most of us owned a pair of green knee socks expressly for St. Patrick’s Day. By the time I hit the 8th grade and was allowed to get my ears pierced, tiny green shamrock earrings were the way to go.

As for food, well, I was never a big fan of boiled potatoes and cabbage. Plus, I don’t really remember eating a lot of corned beef as a kid, though I’m sure we did. My mom is most definitely Irish. My dad? Well, not so much. But he – like every other non-Irishman – gets to pretend for a day.

I’m not sure how Vince and I will celebrate St. Paddy’s Day. We’ve both had a busy week and are pretty tired – so a “pub crawl” is out. Heck, we’ll count it as the luck o’ the Irish just to be able to crawl upstairs and get eight hours of sleep tonight!

Plus, we don’t have any corned beef at home ‘cause Vince is waiting for the after-holiday sale at Kroger’s.

So…Happy St. Paddy’s Day. Hope you all get kissed rather than pinched. Well, unless you happen to like getting pinched. But I don’t want to know the details, okay?!

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