Thursday, March 13, 2014

I'm Not Irish!

March 17. When I lived in England, that date meant nothing to me, I didn't even know anyone who had a birthday on that day. But apparently, it's St. Patrick's day. It's the day where the whole of America believes it's Irish.  You have to wear green, possibly a badge professing you are Irish, that you need to be kissed or pinched or that you need a drink. And of course, everyone eats corned beef and cabbage.

Now, my late mother-in-law was Irish. Very, very Irish. So much so that when I was going to meet her for the first time, I was told I "wouldn't be able to understand a word she says." Very reassuring and a much needed confidence boost!  Anyway, she was extremely Irish and in all my time knowing her, I never once saw her eat or cook corned beef and cabbage. I never saw her drink Guinness either, I didn't actually see her drink anything, but that’s a whole other story.
Corned Beef I remember
Corned Beef and Cabbage??

My point is, I had never heard of corned beef and cabbage, nor seen so much celebration of St. Patrick’s day until I came to America. My definition of corned beef was the meat that came in a funny shaped tin or in little square slices at the meat counter in the supermarket.  And St. Pat’s day was for the Irish to get drunk in the pub.  Us English wouldn’t get involved.  I think it might be different now, but when I lived there it was just another day and there was certainly no cabbage involved!

So what is it with America that they celebrate so much? I can understand those on parts of the east coast celebrating a bit since most of the immigrants from the potato famine settled there and there are huge Irish communities, but really, California, how Irish could you possibly be?  It’s all very confusing to me.  But I think I may be able to force myself to have a Harp or two.

And yes, I'm jealous. Why isn't there an “I wish I was English” day?  Couldn't you once, just once, celebrate St. George's Day (does anyone know when it is?)  Don't you know America, that we helped you settle here and we pretty much created your government.... Oh, never mind, that makes sense then. *smile*

But just so you know, you may celebrate your independence on July 4th, but the English are sneaking back in - one family at a time!

[And by the way, St. George's Day is April 23, although it's usually celebrated on the first Monday after Easter week, which changes most years... confusing?]


  1. I refuse to wear green on St Patrick's day, and why do American's insist on calling it St. Patty's day, umm, that's not the abbreviated version of Patrick! Also I have had several annoying questions/comments along the lines why I don't celebrate St Patrick's day when I'm from England, I then have to explain England and Ireland are TWO DIFFERENT COUNTRIES! We will have to start the tradition of American's celebrating St George's day, I'm sure they won't mind another excuse to drink beer in a pub :)

    1. I totally agree - I vote this April we all wear red and white, drink Tetley's British Beer or Newcastle Brown Ale and talk like the Queen for a day!!! We may get some funny looks, but every movement has to start somewhere.