The Luck of the Irish

wpid-2011-03-26_14-29-20_594.jpgThis St. Patrick ’s Day I’ll be flying to Wisconsin.  Why Wisconsin you ask?  I say, “Why not Wisconsin?”  Unlike many other of the jobs I have in life, I have one that pays me, and they are sending me to Wisconsin.  So while you are downing a green pint of brew, on the sunny porch of some Irish pub, remember me, sitting in Philadelphia Airport, waiting for the plane, and then my layover in Detroit.  Have a second shot of Tullamore Dew or 18 year old Jameson Whiskey, and drink a toast to me (if you can’t think of Mother, potatoes, corned beef, whiskey, beer or anything else to toast.)

St. Patrick’s Day has always been something sacred in our family; a shot of Tulllamore Dew (gross stuff) with The Old Man, some Killian’s Irish Red beers, and old Phillies Cigars (my Dad’s favorite, I don’t know why), freezing our asses off in his garage.  This was our big bonding movement of the year, the one time we accept that we do have some Irish blood in our veins, and soon to be Irish vomit on the floor of the garage.

My Aunt Betty and Uncle John (Murphy) used to have St. Patrick’s Day parties in their suburban NJ, detached two car garage, but like all of us in later years, it’s become too much work.  Grand parties they were.   Everyone turned out for their parties, neighbors, friends, relatives, and anyone else that might have passed by the blocked off street.  All were welcome and everyone had a grand time.   It was also a chance to catch up with the relatives I don’t get to see;  my Cousin Renee, Cousin Danny, and Cousin Jimmy as well as to have a drink with Uncle John (who used to call me, “Palsy Walsy” and everyone after a few).  A big bear hug from my uncle, or a crushing handshake, and you felt part of the family.  There was a one person band playing (guitar, harmonica, drum, and a bass pad with his feet) old Irish tunes that a few knew the lyrics to, and the other just made it up through their slurred speaking.  Some songs were sad some had us doing a jig, and after a few beers there were a bunch on the dance floor, enjoying the day.  Bad snows be damned on a party day, and cold?  After a few beers there wasn’t any cold; the keg was flowing and the whiskey too and the music kept you moving.   I miss those parties, but the greatest part is I can always remember them, the people and the fun I had.

Have a happy and safe St. Patrick’s day.

Believe it or not this was a Blue Moon with green food dye I had one St. Patrick’s Day.

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Now is the time!

UncleSam_preview-300 Now is the time to drag out your tap dancing Uncle Sam holding red, white and blue sparklers and singing Yankee Doodle.  For me, Fourth of July has always meant rain.  And when it didn’t rain there were clouds, with a chance of rain.  And when there weren’t clouds and the chance of rain, there was something else keeping me from enjoying fireworks.  Enjoy your Fourth!  And if you get the chance watch 1776.  Great musical.