St Paddy’s

My first legal St Patrick’s day I went to the Blarney Pub with Dad. It was special occasion as that was his place and he asked me to come meet him after work. It was an adult thing not a father and son thing. It was equals meeting for a beer. You only get that kind of thing once or twice in your life. Honestly, it was both. A bonding moment. Dad wasn’t the best at letting his emotions out. So it meant something to me.

And I practically grew up there. Larry and Lorinda served the best biscuits and gravy on Sundays. Chiefy and Terry playing pinball. The juke box that had the monitor and played videos. It was a special place. I could give you the entire layout of the place right now. Or as it was in another life. A different life.

When I turned 21 Larry bought me my first shot of whiskey. It was eight in the morning. He explained that you didn’t shoot it. You savored it. Swirl it in your mouth for a thirty count. It was a right of passage.

Anyway. So I meet dad and drink way too much Guinness. Far too many shots of Jameson. I was seeing two of everything. And that was when Larry told me about the tradition. Anyone who could move the Blarney Stone on the steps leading in was given good luck the whole year. Well I was young dumb and hammered out of my mind. And dammit I was gonna move that rock. There was a crowd laughing and cheering me on as I did absolutely nothing to that damn thing. Went back in and drank more. Got a corned beef sandwich for the road. Which I may or may not have have spectacularly vomitted.

The next day Dad explained the rock was anchored to the steps with rebar as we sat at the bar with hair of the dog that bit us. Larry laughed his ass off at the hurt look on my face and gave me a shot on him. I swirled it around for thirty seconds before swallowing it. I was no more a man than a dumb kid still. But the memory sticks with me to this day.

Happy St Patrick’s day tomorrow to everyone. Especially Dad and Larry. Be safe out there. And don’t fall for the promise of good luck all year. It’s rigged. Trust me.


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