Monday I was at work, and one of my co-workers asked me if today was St. Patrick’s Day. I wasn’t sure if she knew it was always on March 17th, or if she thought that Monday was March 17th. I blinked and told her that no it wasn’t, then explained.
I like St. Patrick’s Day. The best one I ever had was when I was in second grade. We spent a few minutes every day up until St. Paddy’s Day looking for the leprechaun who was dyeing everything green. On the day, we had a party. That’s the great thing about being a kid. You’re always having parties, but you have an amazing time without having to get wasted or make awkward conversation. Also, the vomiting is minimal, and you can eat lots more sugar before you feel sick. Unless you have diabetes.
I was looking up cool, cutesy ways to decorate the house without having to make a lot of extra trips or spend our laundry money. I realize that makes us sound super poor, but it’s really the only cash that we ever have. The other day, I found a dollar, and actually said, “Wow! This is one free load of drying clothes!”
One of my friends posted an Irish saying. Normally, I enjoy Irish blessings in small doses, mainly around St. Patrick’s Day. However, this one was a little weird to me.
This makes a lot of sense back in Ireland. You have large families living in close community with lots of friends and love (hopefully). The houses are probably fairly small, and it’s possible that multiple generations live in them. In my head, I imagine the father of this family with all of his friends singing a song and swaying, beers in hand. Everyone is so packed into this little house that it’s hard to move, except for the children who laugh and run underfoot. The whole place smells like lamb stew.
This is not the Ireland of old. When I think about this saying under current conditions, I think of a down turned economy. Perhaps a studio apartment, which is really just an idiotically dressed-up way of saying, “You live in an apartment, but it’s all one room. Except for the bath room. That’s just a very small room connected to your main room. We’d include it as the one if it weren’t completely unsanitary.” I also think of my old boss who used to rent a room. The room was only big enough for her bed (a twin, mind you, not some king size monstrosity). She had shelves all around and one window. She could barely move in the room, although there was one place to stand, which was where her dog slept, a small area between the door and the bed. I don’t remember her telling me whether or not it even included a closet. I think she may have lived out of a suitcase.
Which leads us to the friends part. If you live in one of those places, you probably don’t have a lot of friends, according to the blessing. I mean, in the studio, you could have some people over, but where would you put all your stuff? Who are we kidding, you probably can’t afford stuff (now I’m just speculating)! If you can’t fit all your friends in it, does that mean they stand outside your windows? That’s just creepy.
The one-room-for-rent leaves more to the imagination. You can maybe have one friend, which means you might have two friends, but one of them can’t actually go inside. If you have anorexic friends, you can probably get more of them in there. You can have regular size friends, but then you run the risk of getting dirty shoes all over your bed. Maybe you’re not close enough to even want them on your bed! You could have friends who all have dwarfism, or maybe you have dwarfism. You could fit considerably more people in. Maybe some of them party on the roof?
Ultimately, we run into the question: does a room qualify as a home? Do any of these? My friend and ex-landlord could totally put this sign up, because his house is huge. He probably can’t fit all of his friends in it.
In the meantime, I prefer the below blessing as it doesn’t imply that your place is too small and you don’t have a lot of friends.
Whatever you choose to celebrate, and however you welcome your guests, from me to you, Happy St. Patrick’s Day, everyone.