Harmony County

2011 & 2009 Winner of "Best Humor Column" awarded by the SC Press Association

Where do you wear your green?

with 2 comments

Once again my favorite holiday is here. But before you go down to City Hall to get your butt painted green or you join the parade to the nearest Irish saloon, here are ten facts about my favorite holiday that I find interesting;

  1. St. Patrick was not Irish. He was from Wales.
  2. The humble shamrock was originally a teaching tool. St. Patrick is said to have used the three-leaved plant to explain the Holy Trinity (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) to the pagan Irish.
  3. The first St. Patrick’s Day parade took place in New York in the 1760s.
  4. For many years, blue was the color most often associated with St. Patrick. Green was considered unlucky. St. Patrick’s blue was considered symbolic of Ireland for many centuries and the Irish Presidential Standard is still blue.
  5. For many years, Dripsey in County Cork had the world’s shortest parade, just 77 feet, the distance between two pubs – The Weigh Inn and The Lee Valley. Currently, the town of Hot Springs, AR claims to have the shortest parade – a 98 foot route on Bridge Street. Recent participants included the Irish Elvises and the San Diego Chicken.
  6. In 2010, the Sydney Opera House went green to mark the 200th anniversary of St. Patrick’s Day there. In Sydney, St Patrick’s Day was first marked in 1810, when Lachlan Macquarie, the Governor of New South Wales, provided entertainment for Irish convict workers.
  7. Irish flee the country. In Ireland on March 17 you’ll find many public figures, musicians, and dancers have traveled abroad to work on lucrative gigs elsewhere. Politicians also travel to drum up trade.
  8. In Chicago every year, the Plumbers Local 110 union dyes the river “Kelly” green. The dye lasts for about five hours. Likewise in Savannah, GA.
  9. Traditionally, every year, the Irish leader hands a crystal bowl full of shamrock to the US President. The shamrock, grown in Kerry, is immediately destroyed by the Secret Service after the exchange.
  10. Guinness sales soar on St. Patrick’s Day. Recent figures show that 5.5 million pints of the black stuff are downed around the world every day. On St. Patrick’s Day that figure is doubled. (I do my fair share. Every year I get a ‘Thank You’ note from the brewery folks.)

Back in the day when I was in RVN I had an Irish flag. We raised it up over a fire base. One night we went through a mortar attack. The next morning we found it full of shrapnel holes. Me and three other Micks held it up for a photo. We sent the pix to the Dublin Times. They ran it in there Sunday supplement over the cutline, “The Wild Geese are still flying”.

So today while your enjoying your corned-beef and cabbage, washed down by a pint of the “black stuff” give we Irish a thought for our many contributions to all mankind.

After all, we did invent whisky. “Slainte!” © 2016, Jim McGowan



Written by harmonycounty

March 17, 2016 at 4:42 p03

Posted in Humor

2 Responses

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  1. Jim, Happy St. Paddy’s Day to You ! Enjoy !

    Eldon Kilberger

    March 17, 2016 at 4:42 p03

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