Sunday, March 16, 2014

Almost St. Patrick's Day

             When you wake up on your couch, in your Irish pajamas (which for the uninitiated are the clothes you wore the previous day, often including shoes) and you wonder why your wallet is lighter than you recall, you just experienced the tiniest taste of life; the sort of life that all those Irish writers and poets mumbled about, a life in the pursuit of a modicum of smiles and laughter along the hard pan of actual life.  

             It is not easy being Irish. I suppose it’s not easy to be any ethnicity or nationality and I’m certainly not comparing one to the other, but when your culture has its own holiday, there are some standards that must be adhered to. The most important thing about being Irish is to fill every heart with laughter. Every culture has its own humor, but none is so filled with true stories as the Irish. (Of course, there are no Irish jokes, they’re all true stories.) But there is a certain responsibly upon the Irish to make you laugh. The awesome sense of wry and or blatant hilarity is a long and tough cross to bear out but we do it in spite of ourselves.

             I like to think that the Irish invented cerebral humor. That is to say, we made you think about what is actually funny. I know that others may disagree with this opinion and they are certainly entitled to do so. We Irish are nothing without our incredible capacity for forgiveness and open mindedness. See, there you go, an excellent example of the type of humor we Irish blessed the world with. You’re welcome.

             The other important thing about being Irish is how huge the heart on our sleeve is. We are a very passionate culture and if she doesn’t come over here and talk to me right now I swear to Christ almighty I’ll take a flame thrower to this place and burn every last Mother Fucker.  Maybe it is a strange passion, but in all seriousness, we do have a terrible heartache in our souls. Which, we can often only cure with excessive blathering over a few pints of whiskey. It may all sound like nonsense, but we remember that you listened and that you cared and we’ll do it again if you give us the chance. We Irish are persistent in the vocalization of our passions, right in your damn face, whether you want to hear it or not. It’s your fault for listening.

             Irishness is a blessing, for sure. As much as it is a curse. Our passions drive us to acts of complete and utter insanity, or sometimes they drive others to insanity, but if we never did it, where in the world would you get all that awesome romantic stuff from. Do you think John Cusack would have ever held that boom box up out in front of Ion Skye’s place if it weren’t for the Irish? Really, the British or the French would have done that? Okay crazy, whatever. I’m not even sure if he was Irish in that movie, but I think you get my point. Acts of utter ludicrousness for love are certainly an Irish invention. And if they didn’t actually invent it they certainly perfected it.

             Being Irish also requires you temper you humor with a tinge of sadness. Because all the Irish know that one day we’re going to die and if you didn’t have any fun while you were living then you truly wasted your life… that the Irish God granted you. Of course God is Irish, c’mon, he lived with his parents until he was 30 and then became a “carpenter”, but really just hung out with his pals all day, drinking.

             I know that sounds like I’m referring to Jesus, but if you’re Irish then you would know that we came up with the whole Trinity thing, that God, Jesus and the Holy Ghost are all one in the same. Hence the clovers. Again, you’re welcome.

So, as this St. Patrick’s Day arrives and you put on all your greenery, dye your rivers, drink until your kidneys fail, and generally make an ass out of yourself for the sake of a few laughs or the affections of a certain girl who just won’t freaking acknowledge you in “that” way, remember that with great Irishness comes great responsibility. Be funny, not cruel. Be honest, but not rude. Be humble, until humility is no longer appropriate, then be awesome.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day. I’ll see you at the pub.

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