Just to clarify, I don’t know of any part of my heritage that goes back to Ireland.
Yet, it was something that I remember being involved with annually. We would exchange Shamrock cards at school much like we would Valentine’s Day cards and my mother would always prepare a supper of boiled cabbage and corned beef. We only had it that one day, it seems, and that was because my dad liked it but my mom not so much. I learned to appreciate what vinegar could do to enhance the taste of things.
And, we all wore green. If you know me, you know that that was kind of a big thing. In fact, I’m wearing a green sweatshirt and green sleep pants as I type this. TMI?
I actually can’t remember if any of my friends had Irish in their ancestry; we didn’t talk about that sort of thing.
At university, I got to experience another deal. Now of legal drinking age, the item on the menu was green beer. It’s actually not a big deal as I talked to a bartender – you just take a non-descript beer and add a few drops of green food colouring and voila! Kind of a drop in the bucket compared to what happens in Chicago. But, the beer was a thing and I can remember the special time when the MACUL Conference would be on the 17th.
We’re more aware of stereotypes these days but that doesn’t stop the corporate world. I had to go shopping yesterday and noticed many Leprechauns used as displays. It’s been months since I’d been in the store but my wife told me they went up around February 15th. At least, there were no snakes in the store.
Older and wiser, I hope, I do recognize that Saint Patrick’s Day is a holiday and religious event for some. In fact, the shamrock was supposedly used as a visual to explain the Holy Trinity.
Around here though, my learning was inspired by this day and the fact that the snow is gone except for a pile over at the school where the plough dumped things. In fact, out lawn is starting to green up nicely. I’m starting to think about the lawn cutting that’s to come.
Planting grass really isn’t a big deal here. We just let whatever is there do its thing. When they took out the old hydro pole to put in a new one for that and the new Internet access, I did buy a little bag of seed to try and repair the damage. Other than that, the lawn is a mixture of a lot of green things – grass, weeds, and some clover. And that thought got me on this train of thought that maybe we could plant shamrocks.
Imagine my disappointment when I read this article Difference Between Irish Shamrocks and Four-Leaf Clovers and discovered the history of the word “Shamrock”.
It was a good bit of learning but nothing that I could take to the store for purchase.
Since most of my clothing is a shade of green, that’s probably as far as I’ll go tomorrow.