Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy St. Patricks Day - A Lament

I've been a wee bit of a curmudgeon on Facebook today. I've seen a number of my young computer acquaintances post they are going out after work to "get smashed" for St. Patrick's Day because they took tomorrow off. They need a day specifically to get drunk? I must be missing something here.

I remember being cornered by a woman in the company for whom I was working at the time, who admonished me because I was not wearing any green on St. Patrick's Day. I am of Scottish, English, German and Czech extraction. There's no Irish. I have a connection to these other cultures but none, really, to Ireland. I believe, were I able to go back far enough, I would see there is Norse blood running through my veins as well, given that the Vikings made it a habit to attack the eastern side of Scotland. On that St. Patrick's Day in particular, I had been quite tired while getting dressed and had forgotten the date.

It's said that on St. Patrick's Day, everyone is Irish. What a lovely sentiment. But does that mean I have to succumb to overconsumption of beer? And where does tinting the beer green have anything to do with Irish culture?

I guess that's my biggest complaint about this pseudo-holiday. It's not about Irish culture. It's not about a celebration of corned beef and cabbage or Irish music. It's disintegrated into a socially acceptable day to become really, really drunk and be hung over the next day.

I knew a guy who tended bar on weekends when he wasn't working his day job. He hated St. Patrick's Day. The bar where he worked never had specials on March 17th. They discovered they didn't need to have anything "on sale" because the place would be packed regardless of a happy hour. He called the people who flooded the bar "amateurs". The regulars never showed up or came early and went home. People drinking in the bar on March 17th were not the people who would consider doing this for camaraderie. It was simply because getting drunk on St. Patty's Day was what one should be doing.

It does a disservice to the Irish to be so recognized and that's my lament.

Beverage: Huckleberry tea (I can't afford to stop at Caribou and get Irish Breakfast tea and I have none in the house.)


No comments:

Post a Comment