Last week, as part of a post on More PC wackiness, I took some local Irish Philadelphians to task for figuratively swinging their shillelaghs at Spencer’s Gifts during a protest at the Franklin Mills Mall over ”desecration of the Shamrock”. Spencer’s crime? The sale of “Kiss me, I’m Irish” merchandise. Although I sympathized with their observation that Irish tales of drinking and fighting were a bit overplayed at this time of the year, I also felt they were dangerously close to joining all those ultra-sensitive cultural groups who lose their insert relevant cultural icon here every time someone looks at them crooked.
As an Irish-American several generations removed from life on The Ould Sod, I offered my view that one of the aspects of Irish culture I always found appealing was the Irish’s ability to maintain a friendly demeanor while holding dear their culture and their heritage. In my humble Americanized opinion the Irish, who are no strangers to natural and man-made tragedies, had refined the ability to survive to an art … an art in the form of a folksy wisdom and an uncanny ability to laugh at themselves.
So with those thoughts in mind, here are a few good Irish stories and sayings in tribute to a hardy and agreeable breed of people. And yes, a few stoudts are included.
May the roof above us never fall in,
And may we friends beneath it never fall out!
Paddy was visiting a large American city. He was patiently waiting and watching the traffic cop at a busy street crossing. The cop stopped the flow of traffic and shouted, “Okay, pedestrians!” They would all cross, then he’d allow the traffic to resume once again.
He’d done this several times, and Paddy still stood on the sidewalk.
After the cop had shouted, ‘Pedestrians!’ for the tenth time, Paddy went over to him and said, “Is it not about time ye let the Catholics across?”
Continual cheerfulness is a sign of wisdom.
An Irish priest is driving down to New York and gets stopped for speeding in Connecticut. The state trooper smells alcohol on the priest’s breath and then sees an empty wine bottle on the floor of the car.
He says, “Sir, have you been drinking?”
“Just water, officer”,’ says the priest.
The trooper asks, “Then why do I smell wine?”
The priest looks at the bottle and says, “Good Lord! He’s done it again!”
Here’s to you and yours, and to mine and ours.
And if mine and ours ever come across you and yours,
I hope you and yours will do as much for mine and ours
As mine and ours have done for you and yours!
Mike was driving down the street in a sweat because he had an important meeting and couldn’t find a parking place. Looking up to heaven he said, “Lord take pity on me. If you find me a parking place I will go to Mass every Sunday for the rest of me life and give up me Irish Whiskey!”
Miraculously, a parking place appeared.
Mike looked up again and said, “Never mind, I found one.”
You’ll never plough a field by turning it over in your mind.
Walking into the bar, Seamus said to Charlie the bartender, ‘”Pour me a stiff one – just had another fight with the little woman.”
“Oh yeah?” said Charlie, “And how did this one end?”
“When it was over,” Seamus replied, “She came to me on her hands and knees.”
“Really,” said the bartender, “Now that’s a switch! What did she say?”
“Come out from under the bed, you little chicken!”
Here’s to me, and here’s to you.
And here’s to love and laughter.
I’ll be true as long as you.
And not one moment after.
Sean staggered home very late after another evening with his drinking buddy, Paddy. He took off his shoes to avoid waking his wife, Kathleen. He tiptoed as quietly as he could toward the stairs leading to their upstairs bedroom, but misjudged the bottom step. As he caught himself by grabbing the banister, his body swung around and he landed heavily on his rump. A whiskey bottle in each back pocket broke and made the landing especially painful.
Managing not to yell, Sean sprung up; pulled down his pants; and looked in the hall mirror to see that his butt cheeks were cut and bleeding. He managed to quietly find a full box of Band-Aids and began placing them as best he could on each place he saw blood.
He then hid the now almost empty Band-Aid box, and shuffled and stumbled his way to bed.
In the morning, Sean woke up with searing pain in both his head and his butt and Kathleen staring at him from across the room.
”You were drunk again last night weren’t you?”, she accused.
Sean replied, “Why would you say such a mean thing?”
”Well”, Kathleen said, ‘It could be the wide open front door. It could be the broken glass at the bottom of the stairs. It could be the drops of blood trailing through the house. It could be your bloodshot eyes. But mostly … it’s all those Band-Aids stuck on the hall mirror!”
May your thoughts be as glad as the shamrocks.
May your heart be as light as a song.
May each day bring you bright, happy hours
That stay with you all the year long.
May this St. Patrick’s Day find you and yours in the best of spirits and at the peak of good health!
(Thanks to Gary K for the jokes! – Cranky … except when I win in poker.)