Okay, I took a much-needed day off today, and it just so happened to be St. Patrick’s day. I was mildly excited about this fact. I say mildly, because I’m from Kansas City, where St. Patrick’s Day is probably the biggest holiday next to Christmas. EVERY restaurant in town will have a St. Patty’s day special with corned beef and cabbage.
It’s not uncommon to have folks take the day off work and head down to Westport and watch the parade (And drink inordinate amounts of green beer and whiskey). Everyone dresses in green and pretends to be Irish, even if they’re not. The term “Everyone’s Irish on St. Patrick’s Day!” probably started in KC. We practice that mantra with great, fake-Irish pride (As well as a lot of authentic Irish pride)! The Irish community in KC is pretty active.
So, imagine my shock and wonder when I woke up on St. Patrick’s day in Seattle and saw no festivities taking place in my neighborhood (Ballard). I was determined to find some corned beef and cabbage, but the best I could get in our neck of the woods was corned beef hash with my eggs. Everyone was nonchalantly walking around in brown, navy, red even! It felt like the twilight zone.
Google didn’t even have a St. Patrick’s Day doodle for us! I looked at two different calendars to see if I was just smoking crack. Our server at the restaurant sort of nodded to the fact that we were wearing green and said, “Happy St. Patty’s Day… or St. Patrick’s Day… or whatever.” I couldn’t believe the lack of enthusiasm. It was negative enthusiasm! It was de-thusiasm.
The funny thing is, in KC, I’m not one of the paint my face, dye my hair, wear a shamrock antlers and green and white striped knee socks Irish enthusiasts. In fact, I’m one of the wear green and smile at the freaky people and go about my business sort of people. I have generally preferred the Irish contact high as opposed to smoking it myself. (I did work in Westport one year during St. Patrick’s Day… Whoa… That’s all I can say… Whoa…)
After experiencing this utter lack of Irish on this great holiday in this mostly Norwegian town, I may have to invest in a green wig and some ridiculously huge shamrock glasses!!!