A Saint Patrick’s Day Primer

The calendar once against says today is March 17th. You know what means, right? It’s Saint Patrick’s Day, aka, the Feast of Saint Patrick, the one day of the year dedicated to the patron saint of Ireland, a man I’m pretty sure was canonized more for his conversion of Irish pagans to Catholicism than anything having to do with slithering limbless reptiles.

But, hey, what difference does it make? Let’s get wrecked!

Look, I get it…everybody likes a good “bar” holiday. His holiness the Dalai Lama certainly knows I do. In fact, I’ve written about it on several previous St. Patricks’ Days. There’s (probably) nothing wrong with getting sloppy drunk on a weekday. I mean, the NCAA tournament starts today, anyway, so it’s kind of a given, regardless.

But there’s no reason to be sloppy drunk AND disrespectful to an entire culture, you know? So, here’s a quick primer of important things to keep in mind while you’re considering how abusive you’d like to be to your liver:

  1. This is St. Patrick’s Day, the liturgical Feast (or Festival if you’re a time traveler from ye Olden Days) of Saint Patrick, that theoretically falls on the traditional anniversary of the dude’s death. Please bear in mind, then, that all those shots of Jameson you’re popping are intended to commemorate an actual person, who at absolutely NO POINT IN HIS LIFE went by the name “Patty”. Paddy, maybe, although I doubt it. But “Patty”? No. Patty is pretty disrespectful to a fella named Patrick (aka, Padraig), even if he was born in Roman Britannia. So, just…here, read this.
  2. You might be tempted to reference a leprechaun, play some silly leprechaun game, or have fevered, beer-induced dreams of catching a wee, green-jacketed fairy and forcing him to pay you in gold. Don’t. Just….don’t. Can you imagine if some yokel saddled America with a fairytale gremlin mascot? We’d be putting troops on the ground of any nation daring to make even a passing reference to the orange-skinned American Drumpf fairy, who speaks the promise of any wish you desire, but instead steals your mind and soul, leaving you mad and filled with hate.
  3. To honor Saint Patrick’s Day, we recommend ordering one (or more) of the following:Guinness murphysspdsmithor even, I suppose killians

(if you absolutely must, although Killian’s Irish Red is about as Irish as I am. Which is to say, there’s a whisper of Irish descent in there somewhere, but, really, just, no.) Whatever you do, for the love all things holy, pagan, or otherwise scaly, There Is Absolutely No Good Reason For2

bad green beer

Seriously, if you find yourself drawn to watery beer with a few complementary drops of food coloring this year, fine. But don’t tell yourself it has anything to do with trying to pay homage or respect to Irishy things. It doesn’t. A weird jello-green tint in your American beer is much more about you getting shammered than it is about Irish anything. And while I’ll be the first to say there’s (occasionally) nothing wrong with getting your drink on until someone’s face melts, If that’s what you want to do, please do us all a favor and drink your preferred Watery American Lager in it’s natural, nearly colorless hue and instead maybe raise a toast to the Puritans who set up shop in New England in an effort to flee religious persecution. Sure, those settlers will likely have had better beer than you1 (which begs the question of who exactly is the “settler” here), but at least you’ll still get drunk, without offending an entire culture.

And now that I’ve likely offended you, the Irish in general, and probably the Puritans, too, I’d say my work here is done. Time to go find myself a nice Irish stout.


1 Yes, the drank plenty of alcohol. Alcohol was safer and cleaner than the water from that stream yonder that probably had a family of deer pee in it yesterday morning.

2 Seriously, I cannot believe it’s been 5 years since I wrote my finest poetic work ever, I Do Not Like Green Tastes Beer

One thought on “A Saint Patrick’s Day Primer

  1. Guinness Extra Stout was my gateway beer into the world of stouts. Now that I’ve found local stuff brewed so thick and dark you can stand a fork up in it, there’s no going back. Can’t do Guinness any more unless it’s in chocolate cake or ice cream where it belongs. http://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/1875-chocolate-guinness-cake

    As for weak domestic brews, I heard a sage story when I lived near the Coors Brewery at one time….

    Q: Why is Coors like having sex in a canoe?

    A: Because it’s fucking close to water.


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