Monday, March 17, 2008

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Erin Go Bragh!

Well, ...I have conflicting emotions about St. Paddy's Day...

I am some-portion-Irish. My mom's mom's maiden name was Bailey. I look Irish. I have pale skin and dark hair. (Yes, that's Irish. It's not red hair and green eyes, but it is Irish.) I have always wanted red hair and green eyes. So, so badly. I tried dyeing my hair red a few times (orange, auburn), but my hair is so dark it doesn't really change that much. I thought about green colored contacts for my hazel eyes, but decided not to bother.

I have always been attracted to red-headed boys. In 7th grade, my best friend said to me, "what is it with you and the redheads?" because every. guy. I had a crush on had red hair. Oooooh baby there was this senior when I was a freshman in high school, who was starting point guard on the basketball team (his name was Ned... something...) and I loved admiring him from afar. My first boyfriend had strawberry blonde hair. My husband has red hair, but not on the top of his head... TMI? He is half Irish and half Italian. His skin is definitely Irish.

Being some-portion-Irish didn't factor into my life growing up, other than this attraction to redheads. Both sides of my family had been in the States for a very long time. We didn't have any customs from the "Old Country." We are definitely American. In school, when we were supposed to share our traditions or our ancestry or whatnot, and people brought in empanadas, sushi, or baguettes, I didn't have anything to contribute. My mom doesn't know how to make corned beef.

But St. Patrick's Day was a time for me to proclaim, "I am Irish and proud of it! (Even though I may not know anything about it.)" I loved it.

Then, I came to realize (in college or so) that St. Patrick's Day for many Americans is an excuse to get shitfaced.

So now I have conflicting emotions. Because I like to get loaded, plastered, shitfaced, I really do. I like an excuse to drink and be ridiculous. But I think it's pretty insulting to "celebrate" the patron saint of Ireland by pouring green alcohol down your gullet and bowing to the porcelain idol.

So I am in a conundrum. Do I act like an American and raise a glass (or seven) of whiskey, or do I act like an Irish citizen and treat this as a serious religious holiday?

Because I'm proud to be some-portion-Irish, I really, really am. And I want to enjoy being proud!

1 comment:

Jennifer (Jen on the Edge) said...

You do what feels right to you and don't worry about the rest. :-)