Advice for St. Patrick’s Day

Okay, so evidently St. Patrick’s Day isn’t just a day this year; it’s a whole friggin’ weekend. Which means that the madness and mayhem will commence tomorrow.

While I’ll personally be laying low this year, as I do around March 17 every year, many others will be running riot over the next four days, drinking beer and whiskey that they seldom if ever otherwise drink, calling anything that’s green “Irish,” including bog-standard lager dyed with food colouring, and generally using the feast day of an Irish saint as an excuse to get plastered. Which is fine.

But if you’re going to “do” St. Patrick’s Day, at least do it right! Which means paying at least a bit of attention to the following:

1) If you must shorten the name, repeat after me, St. Paddy’s Day. Not St. Patty’s Day or plain Patty’s Day. “St. Paddy’s Day.”

2) There are many more Irish whiskeys out there than just Jameson. Try one or two. You might just find yourself drinking Irish whiskey more than just once a year.

3) What I said above about whiskey? It applies equally to Irish stout.

4) If you must do shots — and on a day that is sure to be filled with drinking, I would counsel strongly against them —  limit yourself to just one or two. Five or six or more whiskey shots is a sure-fire route to drunkenness and eventual spewing.

5) Wear green, wear funny badges, wear silly hats if you wish, but accept that you are not, in fact, Irish. Not for a day or for a minute. (Unless, of course, you really are Irish.)

6) A cocktail made with crème de menthe is not by definition Irish. Neither is one made with Midori.

7) Imperial stout is not a beer built for all-day drinking.

8) The green-dye-in-lager thing? It shouldn’t need saying, but I’ll say it anyway: Just. Don’t.

9) Lining up to get into a bar is stupid. If there is a line-up, go somewhere else for a drink or two and return later to see if the line-up has dissipated. If it has not, just accept that it was never meant to be.. (The sole exception to this rule is when the line-up is covered, heated and licensed.)

10) That “Kiss me, I’m Irish” shirt? Leave it at home.

8 Replies to “Advice for St. Patrick’s Day”

  1. Also, this, from the great Fergus Carey:
    “Irish Car Bomb isn’t a cute name for a drink or cupcake and, if you’re pushing shite like this, cut it out. People that lived their lives punctuated by car bombs aren’t amused. 25-year-old Ronan Kerr was murdered last year by an Irish car bomb; he can’t join you for a drink.”

    (Truth: Fergie isn’t necessarily great, but he is Irish and a very fine fellow.)

  2. “7) Imperial stout is not a beer built for all-day drinking.”
    Challenge… ACCEPTED!!! (45 minutes later) Zzzzzzz…

  3. On 1) there, if you want to be really Irish, you drop the “Saint”. At the very least you skim briskly over it with little more than a “sint”, but “Paddy’s Day” would be a very common usage.

    The same goes for St. James’s Gate, incidentally: the Saint is entirely optional, though the Gate is not. “St. James’s Gate”, “James’s Gate”, “the Gate”: all fine. “Saint James’s” or (worse, and I’ve heard this) “Saint James”? No.

    I think it’s because the Saint part doesn’t exist in Irish. St Patrick’s Day is “Lá Féile Pádraig”, literally the “Day of the Feast of Patrick”.

  4. Stephen…Lighten up. St Paddy’s Day is a day to be “silly”, whether you’re Irish or an Irish wanna be….Silly hats and all

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