Let me start by saying that I’m Irish. Not that you’d be able to tell by my ridiculously pale skin and freckles or anything, but shockingly enough, I am. As such, I have always loved a day to celebrate the Irish side of me. When I was a kid it was the normal wear green, pretend to talk with an Irish accent, and remind everyone that I am indeed Irish. As I got older it became more of the wear green, drink green variety. So yes green beer was a staple. Now…now not so much.
I’m nearly 30 and was raised deep in the Catholic church. I went to Catholic School, we went to church (on Saturdays but still) and my grandparents wished every day that I were more strict with my religion. Which leads me to today. Today I always think about my grandfather, and what today actually means. March 17 is not about getting drunk of cheap, green beer (though I’ve done that) and it’s not about dressing crazy and acting ridiculous (though I’ve done that too) it’s about more.
Overall, St. Patrick spread Christianity throughout Ireland and “drove out the snakes,” or Pagans. Now, it has come to symbolize a country and celebrate Irish heritage and culture.
Why a clover?
St. Patrick used the clover to explain the holy trinity to the pagans.
The actual color of St. Patrick the man is blue but green is associated with Irish nationalism.
This is an interesting one. St. Patrick’s Day falls during lent but it is the one day where the restriction of eating and drinking is lifted. Which partially explains why alcohol is such a big part of the celebration. I think my favorite thing is the drowning of the clover. The shamrock is placed in the bottom of a glass and then whiskey, or beer poured over top and drank to St. Patrick, Ireland or those celebrating. At the end of the drink, the clover is either swallowed or tossed over the shoulder for good luck
While I am all for celebrating this wonderful day however you see fit. All I ask if that you do so responsibily and while remembering why it was started to begin. It’s not just about binge drinking, but to represent an entire culture of people.