Posted by: martinworster | April 12, 2007

45. ST PADDY’S DAY

St Patrick’s day in Southern California

Click to enlarge!American’s like any excuse for an event. Halloween gets a lot of hype with half of the aisles in supermarkets dedicated to orange plastic junk and scary masks months before October. Then there’s Valentines Day, the 4th of July, Thanksgiving and of course St Patricks Day. I found it weird that supermarkets and card stores sold St Patricks Days cards. How weird. You can’t even buy those in London which has a higher percentage of Irish people there. I wonder if you can buy them in Ireland.

Thats the thing with Americans. Any vague whiff of ancestory and they go all gooey. ‘Oh my second cousins, great aunts, ex-husbands best friend is from Galway, therfore I have a claim to Oirishness’ It’s typical Americana that anything, whatever it is, can be turned into crass commercialism and hence you can buy your cards, green T-shirts, special edition Guinness cans on March 19th.

The Irish disapora always interests me. Notions of nationality and how they change once you are out of that country. It’s the Irish Bar phenomena, the Irish experience and craic on tap, judging from the amount of ‘Irish’ bars there are everywhere. Everyone loves the Irish and wants to drink and party like them.

Thus, I went into Huntington Beach on St Patrick’s Day with my sister. Town was extra busy teeming with Southern Californians out for a good time. The queue – or line as they say here – was too big for the one Irish in town. We went to a Sushi Restaurant Bar and saw a procession of people wearing emerald green tops. I met a couple from Chicago who’s surname was Kennedy so they had genuine Irish stakes. We drank a shot consisting of a a Guiness which you drop a shot glass of something else into and then down it. I can’t remember much about the rest of the night.

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