A year ago, I sent my niece a St. Patrick’s Day card. She was just four months old, so it wasn’t as though she could read it, but she’s my niece, I only have the one, and she should get cards from people who are related to her but who don’t feel avuncular.
I wrote a note in the card. “The True Tale of St. Patrick’s Day,” it was. Someone needed to educate her in this, the most auspicious of drinking holidays, and that task fell to me. So I wrote a story, and this is what I wrote:
Once upon a time, long before I was born, Vikings invaded Ireland and they laid waste to the pastoral land.
A young priest named Patrick called upon the spirits that dwelled in that ancient land, and with his enchanted harp he summoned an army of enchanted snakes to drive the Vikings back into the sea.
Over hill and vale these snakes swarmed. The Vikings were overwhelmed, and both snake and Viking perished in the Irish Sea.
The spirits of Ireland came to Patrick because they were very sad. All the snakes of Ireland had drowned in the sea, and the land was now snakeless.
But Patrick pointed out that no longer would the Irish be bitten by snakes. The spirits of Ireland agreed this was good, and a great feast of corned beef and cabbage and stout was had, because stout fills your daily bread requirement on the nutrition chart. Really, ask your doctor.
So, every year on St. Patrick’s Day, a great spirit flies through the air, riding astride a giant keg, from whence he can dispense Guinness to all the good men and women of legal drinking age in the world, except for the truly virtuous who receive Beamish instead.
Great feasts are had, parades are attended, presents are given, all in celebration of that long ago day.
I recorded this as an audio file, tracked it to some Celtic panpipe music, and that’s floating around out there. It’s amusing, in a silly sort of way.
Drink up! :cheers: