Some people love Thanksgiving, filled with Mom’s homemade pumpkin pie and stuffing. Others love the BBQ smell of the Fourth of July. My go-to holiday has always been St. Patrick’s day. There’s something about the music, festivals, parades, culture, the greeness and the beer, of course.
I start to listen to The Coors, Cranberries, U2, Van Morrison and Snow Patrol. Simple Celtic instrumentals send shivers down my spine. One of my favorite pastimes is listening to Celtic music at the local bar near my apartment, Coleman’s Authentic Irish pub.
Three of my favorite authors are Frank McCourt, Oscar Wilde and John McGahern. Reading Wilde’s plays in English class always provoked laughter. My favorites include The Importance of Being Earnest and An Ideal Husband. McCourt’s style of writing is flawless. Though he writes memoirs, his style and descriptions make me see vivid pictures of Ireland and America in my head. I was introduced to McGahern’s writings in an Irish Lit class at Brockport. Amongst Women is still my favorite work by him.
I load up on movies with Irish influences:
- Angela’s Ashes
- Darby O’Gill and the Little People
- Boondock Saints
- P.S. I Love You
- Circle of Friends
- Michael Collins
- Far and Away
My friends and I browse Irish shops in the area to find gifts for my friends and family. I have the traditional corned-beef and cabbage, soda bread, Guinness Irish stew and Irish breakfast stew.
The beer is another favorite of mine. A tall pint of Guinness, Harp or Smithwick’s. Bailey’s is a good addition to any coffee, as well.
I also love the parade that Syracuse hosts every year downtown. Thousands of people decked in green waiting to see Irish dancing, music, bagpipes, drums and everything Ireland-related.
So, folks, let the countdown begin!