sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

March 17, 2009

happy st. patrick’s day
posted by soe 11:51 pm

St. Patrick’s Day has come to an end. Although the streets of Georgetown were packed with revelers and Irish bars had queues a block long, I’m sad to say that you would have been hard pressed to know that today was a holiday in downtown D.C. Yes, there was the odd green tie or scarf, but by and large the city was still dressed in its drab greys and blacks.

I come from Connecticut, which is a Catholic state, and grew up in a town where you were either Italian or you were Irish. (Okay, that’s not entirely true; you could be Polish or Puerto Rican.) And if you weren’t any of those things, you just sort of coasted along, knowing, as my grandmother used to say that, in all likelihood, you’d end up marrying someone who was. All of southern New England boasts a similar population, as does New York (City, at least), as we were the first stops on the boat over from Europe and probably, therefore, the cheapest fare. And people just stayed.

I’ve made much of the Italian American demographic of the state, because we co-opted their food, and because their immigration waves came more recently than the Irish ones. But most Connecticut towns of a population over 15,000 had at least two Catholic churches — an Italian one and an Irish one — and we all made a big deal out of St. Patrick’s Day. Darby O’Gill and the Little People played on tv. And I never heard of pinching someone for not wearing green until I was in college and had met Westerners who thought this was appropriate behavior. I’m not going to speak for everyone in my home state, but I suspect that if you tried that to a stranger, you’d get socked in the jaw.

But it didn’t happen because you wore green. And if you didn’t, everyone just pitied you because you were forgetful and got dressed without remembering it was March 17.

I’m disappointed D.C. You could have done better — and with so little effort. Please at least buy some green socks before next March, and we’ll try again then.

In the meantime, I offer you two songs. The first is from Going My Way, a sweet film featuring Bing Crosby and Barry Fitzgerald as Catholic priests in New York City:

The second is “You’re Not Irish,” by family friend Robbie O’Connell. He’s the nephew of the Clancy Brothers, and he performs his biographical tune with two of his Clancy cousins:

Happy St. Patrick’s Day, everyone!

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a weekend comes, a weekend goes
posted by soe 1:20 am

When Einstein announced his theory of relativity, anyone who’d ever experienced a weekend whiz by must have thought, “Duh!”

Seriously! What happened to it? And is time going to go even faster? Will it slow down again when I get to be very old?

Our Pi Day celebration was very nice. Rudi heroically put the effort to clean (or, at least, to mask our mess) and to run errands, while I baked. I made apple and pecan pies and Michael cooked up two quiches. Sarah contributed cannoli from a bakery at Union Station of which I’d heretofore been unaware. Julia and Elspeth provided sparkling wit as we finished our prep work, and everyone was kind enough not to point out our inadequate tidying job. Beer and pita chips and hummus supplemented the pies, and we had a merry little feast. Since there were six of us, we paired off into teams for a game of Trivial Pursuit. Michael and I beat the other two teams with a run toward the end, although it was not without its hiccups. I foundered on the Don Larsen perfect game question before redeeming myself with a surprising knowledge (even to myself!) of the Super Bowl.

Sunday was the Homespun Yarn Party, and I went in search of local items to ship to a swap pal in Australia. Normally, I’d rely on more foodstuff to fill out the box, but Australia is particularly persnickety about its imports and routinely confiscates stuff from the mail. Since I’d like my partner to get everything safely, I’m sticking more with hard goods. While I was there, I may have picked up a skein of yarn for myself — a green stripey one that will make a lovely pair of socks for next St. Patrick’s Day. Or maybe for Christmas. Oh, and I did win a door prize — a tote bag from Ravelry!

The rain returned tonight and I walked home from work while chatting on the phone with my folks in the growing drizzle. I don’t mind the drips and we need the rainfall, so it was perfectly fine with me. I’m hoping it keeps the ground pliable so I can spend some time in the garden next weekend. I need to do something with all those seeds I bought up in Connecticut!

Rudi made a tasty supper and we watched the CBS comedies (my favorite tv of the week) before throwing on a dvd of early Boston Legals from the library. Ultimately we ended up with a cooking show on PBS before the news and late night comedy shows.

I’m trying to finish up a few knitting projects before Sock Madness begins Thursday morning, so I pushed through the gusset of my spring socks tonight. Tomorrow night should see me finish the foot, which will leave the toe decreases and binding off for Wednesday night knitting group. This pair is knit in a lovely skein of yarn in a colorway called Spring Garden, and the colors remind me of rainbow sherbet. I picked a pattern called Spring Forward, so I’m optimistically believing they’ll be done for Friday’s Vernal Equinox. I’m also nearly finished with the first part of a sweater I’m knitting, which is nice and soft and squooshy and a very pretty shade of marled turquoise.

I guess that’s about it for right now. Good night!

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