Thursday, July 25, 2013

Summerime is party time and no one knows how to party more than Irish people of any age. Call me racist or a party prejudiced thinking person if you want but it is true. Just take a moment to realize how much value they put to celebrating their Saint Patrick’s Day each and every year without a break. Sometimes Saint Patrick’s Day falls on a Friday during Lent; a time in the Catholic Religion when one was to eat only fish and somehow they managed to change the church rules to eating the traditional Irish food of corn beef and cabbage on a Friday. Forget fasting, let the party go on.

It started on March 17, 460 which is 15 hundred 53 years ago, the date that conflicting sources say was the day Saint Patrick died, the patron saint of Ireland. That is many many years to be carrying on a tradition. He was born in Britain and wrote that he was taken away by Irish kidnappers at the age of 16 years old. Why would the Irish people celebrate such a thing? Doesn’t that make him British and not even Irish?

After six years of slavery, yes, white people were slaves too somewhere in the world history, he escaped from Ireland and studied in monasteries abroad and eventually returned to Ireland to win over Christian converts. Tradition says that Patrick used the three leaf clover shamrock to illustrate the holy trinity. Folklore even credits him with driving the snakes out of Ireland. Ok now we are talking about wizardry like in many of the stories from the Old Testament Bible stories.

Much of Saint Patrick’s life remains uncertain so why party so much about that day? Even if you travel to Ireland today you will find the most popular places in any town are the local Pub or Bar where there is a daily drinking party going on. The enthusiasm that surrounds his day around the world is still a great tradition. New York City held it’s first Saint Patrick’s Celebration back in 1762 that was a tradition carried on with a huge parade that marched up 5th Avenue.

Chicago has a grand parade through Grant Park too but also somehow gets permission to dye the Chicago River green. Really? We need a Kelly green river? There is a tiny town called Enterprise in Alabama that is proud to report the smallest parade ever. People line up the streets to see one lone man march down the middle of the street waving a huge Irish flag and that is it for their parade. Of course there is plenty of drinking and partying to follow because it is an Irish party.

According to the Census bureau 34 million Americans love to party and trace their ancestry back to Ireland. So, even though we are in the middle of the summer, go have yourself a good old fashioned Irish party. Why not? We will be partying anyway cause that is what we do. We are Americans.


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