Erin Go Blech!

Erin Go Blech!

A Story by Damian Alan Gray

Happy St. Patty's Day!


Don’t you just love St. Patty’s Day? Yeah, me neither. It’s not that I have anything against the Irish, or the Irish culture for that matter, but … well, maybe it’s just that I’ve never understood the holiday. I mean, here’s a celebration where everyone is forced to wear one of the most unfashionable colors in the spectrum, and if you refuse, then you face the very real possibility of suffering blood blisters from some drunken idiot, who insists upon pinching you for the cultural infraction. What the hell is that about? Where in the plethora of sweet Irish traditions of leprechauns, rainbows, pots o’ gold and shamrocks does it say that one must go about inflicting bodily harm on anyone who chooses not to participate in this particular jamboree? Could Jews get away with this at Chanukah? Never!

So, while I was watching a great old horror movie the other day, I decided to do a little investigating in order to find out the real history behind this observance, and I came up with some interesting facts. If I understand it correctly, the holiday is in honor of Saint Patrick McQuint, who is apparently the patron saint of driving the snakes out of a little Irish island called Amity and annually using the event as an excuse to wear green and get piss-drunk in the streets. Not that the Irish ever really needed an excuse to get drunk, mind you; that’s simply there birthright.

As the story goes, at one time, Amity Island was apparently teeming with hordes of snakes and they weren’t the nice snakes that you and I have come to love and adore, either. They were the sort that came from the wrong side of the glens and slithered about tempting the minds of the wee Irish lads and lasses with their evil ways; enticing them to rebel against their parents by refusing to drink green beer, thereby causing the Great Potato Famine. This caused many problems amongst the Irish community because, as you may already know, Ireland’s chief export happens to be green beer and potato farming wee Irish lads and lasses.

Something needed to be done about this problem, and quickly at that. So, a committee was formed in order to do away with the snake problem, but as with all committees, by the time they were able to put together a working agenda, vote-in their chairpersons, appoint a head of the Donuts and Coffee Council, and call their first meeting to order, they were all too drunk to get anything else done. Realizing that at this rate the Irish tourism might be ruined by the snake hooligans, they decided to hire-out a local snaker by the name of Patrick McQuint, whose favorite poem was a charming old Irish blessing entitled: “Here’s to Swimmin’ with Bow-legged Women!”

“I’ll get yer snakes for ye, but it’ll cost ye,” he said, and then proceeded to show the committee members his qualifications by way of flaunting his old snake wounds, running his nails down a chalkboard, and by telling a great story about his days on the USS Indianapolis, when the ship went down in snake-infested waters after delivering the bomb. “If I do this for ye, from now on ye’ll all hafta throw up in the middle of the street, wear a bit o’ green with whatever color ye happen to be wearin’, and throw a parade in me honor on March 17th. Oh, and if ye decide not to wear green, ye’ll all be afflicted with blood blisters.”

One of the committee members, who represented Non-Irish Special Rights, then stood up in the back and asked if this rule only applied to people of Irish decent. In an emerald flash, Patrick pinched him so hard that to this day people of the Non-Irish variety are still feeling the pain.

“Erin Go Bragh!” cried the committee members, which is Gaelic for: “Holy crap, we’ll wear whatever damned color you want, just please don’t hurt us!” Thus began the quaint Irish tradition of living in mortal fear of anything that even remotely resembles sobriety.

So, the committee appointed two other men to go along with Patrick to rid the countryside of the snakes. There was Martin MacBrody, who was the town sheriff, and a fine gentleman from the Ireland Institute of Herpetology, named Matt McHooper. McHooper was the first to perform an analysis of the snake situation in Ireland, when he was quoted as saying: “This is not a boat accident. It wasn’t any propeller, it wasn’t any coral reef and it wasn’t Jack the Ripper. It was a snake.” Mayor McVaughn, who was worried about how the publicity of these snake attacks might affect the tourism industry, asked if McHooper was aware of the fact that everyone had already known that they were facing a snake problem, and he wanted to know why McHooper kept insinuating that a boat had anything to do with it. McHooper simply stated that he was familiar with the fact that McVaughn was going to ignore this particular problem until it slithers up and bites him on the a*s, which was good for a laugh, but it also yielded having McHooper’s whiskey privileges taken away for a month.

Eventually, Patrick, Martin and Matt relieved Amity Island of its badly behaved snakes, and everything finally went back to order. The tourism came back to the small Irish island and the only real casualty ended up being Patrick McQuint, himself. In a particularly gruesome scene, he was swallowed whole by one of the larger snakes, who refused to wear green. After his death, and much to the chagrin of the people of Amity Island, Patrick was granted sainthood by the Pope. But true to their word, every March 17th the Irish people of Amity enforced the Wearin’ o’ the Green upon themselves, and the rest of the world, in honor of the man who made this all possible: Saint Patrick McQuint, the Snaker.

Next, we’ll be investigating the repercussions that Easter has had on a society gone mad in “Village of the Damned Bunnies.” Until then, let me just say, Erin Go Bragh and leave me alone!

© 2008 Damian Alan Gray

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Oh this was great! However I am compelled to point out a glaring error of historical note. We of Jewish descent ARE allowed to pinch on Chanukah. We pinch pennies which is why I only get flippin socks. Also of note we couldn't agree is it socks, or sox. (damn the lox) The Rabbis solved the arguement by agreeing to 20 different ways to spell Haunukah.

Loved the tip to Jaws!

Posted 13 Years Ago

Oh my goodness. I actually laughed out loud a few times while reading this. Very cute. Very cute.
There were a few crazy lines that had me going. One in particular...
"they decided to hire-out a local snaker by the name of Patrick McQuint, whose favorite poem was a charming old Irish blessing entitled: "Here's to Swimmin' with Bow-legged Women!""

How did you come up with some of that stuff? That was rhetorical. You do not really have to go into detail of the process.

"Erin Go Bragh!" cried the committee members, which is Gaelic for: "Holy crap, we'll wear whatever damned color you want, just please don't hurt us!"

Thanks for making me smile today.
Love All, Mejasha

Posted 13 Years Ago

As an Irish Erin (plus a jew so the chanukkah comment made me smile)
I approve and endorse this message!

Posted 13 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

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3 Reviews
Added on February 12, 2008
Last Updated on March 17, 2008


Damian Alan Gray
Damian Alan Gray

Spring Hill, FL

Damian Alan Gray is not an author, he is a writer. The difference being, of course, that an author's daily routine normally includes scheduling interviews with Oprah and book signings at Barnes and No.. more..