Tuesday, March 14, 2006


Top Ten Tuesday - St Patrick's Day

Feck off, snakes! It wasn't that hard to think of a theme for this week's edition of Top Ten Tuesday. In case any of you have forgotten, this Friday is the 17th March aka St Patrick's Day.

Yes, unearth your silly leprechaun hats and Irish tricolours and join the rest of the world in celebrating (embarrassing?) Irishness.

I think St Patrick's Day, like all holidays, tends to lose its shine and magic as we get older but even so I'm still a big fan of the day. With that being the case, I give to you all now the top ten things about St Patrick's Day. So without further ado:

1. Day off - First things first, it's a national holiday here so we all get a day off. And if you're a TD, you get a week off! Huzzah!

2. The parade - You know the drill. Floats, jugglers, American cheerleaders swinging stuff yet it's a familiarity that breeds warmth rather than contempt. I have to say though the only floats that I can remember are that big dragon one and the Father Jack float. Anyone else remember that one?

3. Everyone wants to be Irish - Even though it usually leads to the usual stereotypes of leprechaun references, the pot o' gold, Guinness etc., it's still nice to see the rest of the world trying to embrace Irishness. If only they'd get it right though...

4. Irish themes - All the TV shows tend to make a big deal about the day. Paddy's Day is on a Friday this year so I want, nay demand, to see Pat Kenny decked out in a Celtic jersey telling us about his namesake. That alone would justify the TV license fee.

5. Shamrock shakes - Guinness isn't the only drink you should down on Paddy's Day. Make sure you get yourself a Shamrock shake in McDonalds too. Minty goodness right there folks and you only get one week a year to savour it!

6. You get to wear a big leaf - It's tradition on Paddy's Day to walk around with a large plant on your chest, aka the shamrock.

7. You can break Lent - In Ireland you're allowed to break Lent on St Patrick's Day. Apparently it exploits a little-known event in the Bible where Jesus left the desert on the 17th March to have a pint of Guinness and a few sweets.

8. Sea of vomit - It's a day where you can witness Dublin transform into Venice except instead of water and gondolas we have vomit and gardaí. Marvel at the locals pissed before 4pm, struggling to stand up.

9. Hear the wonderful myths - It's a chance to hear all the wonderful stories about St Patrick like the time he got rid of the snakes from Ireland, the time he tended to the Children of Lir and the time he beat Superman in a fight by hiding some Kryptonite amidst his shamrocks. Don't mess with St Patrick, Supes.

10. See the US President - Yes St Patrick's Day allows Irish politicians the chance to leave the country and meet with the US President in acknowledgement of the fact that we Irish built America pretty much single-handedly. I think we all feel a warm glow of pride as we witness the Taoiseach hand the US President a big bowl of weeds. Moments to last a lifetime.

So there you have it. The top ten things about St Patrick's Day. Feel free to comment on my choices or to offer up some of your own.


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