|Ireland: Welcome American suckers!|
Ireland is like Disneyland only drunker. On this St. Patrick's Day, let me explain.
Many years ago when Ireland ran out of potatoes, large numbers of the O' Haras, Murphys, Ryans and other Micks hightailed it to the United States where there was food, lite beer, TV, Celtics and Red Sox games not to mention many like minded red-faced alcoholics (see Germans). The remaining Irish citizens, too lazy to fish, distracted themselves by either fighting or getting drunk. You are, of course, familiar with the old Irish conundrum: Get drunk and fight? Or, fight and get drunk? The situation was dire. Not only were most Irish citizens too blitzed to find their car keys, they also suffered with an economy that held little in the way of good paying quality jobs. No longer was it enough to be either a mud farmer or a sheep rapist. Those days were gone.
One day some inebriated wag in the Irish tourist bureau latched on to the idea of tourism as a key to reviving the fortunes of the Old Sod. Why not play up the whole St. Patrick's Day claptrap about a guy driving snakes from the Emerald Isle? Punch up the leprechaun b.s. too and throw in rumors of a pot of gold and all that jazz. You see, word had reached Ireland that most of the folks who had split for the U.S. when spuds became scarce could not stop bragging about their former homeland and loved to cry in their lager about wanting to go back. "Let's lure them back with cheap tours and superior booze," was the rallying cry. A national turnaround had begun.
|Bill O'Copper, typical ugly American and distant relative.|
And so it came to pass that Ireland became the absolute best place on the planet to find drunken boisterous Americans. Head for Dublin, Cork, Killarney or any of those oh so lovely old cities and you'll see tons of fat Americans in tank tops and Bermuda shorts loudly proclaiming their Irish heritage as they stagger from pub to pub.
If you don't drink, an Irish tour can be an amazing bargain. Not only can you scarf all the delicious chowder and the abundant fruit of the sea that the locals discovered once they learned to bait a hook, but you will never pick up a check thanks to all your drunken pals saying, "I got this." My wife, Linda, and I did this very thing about seven years ago with several other great Americans who also make vague claim to Irish identity. (My grandmother's name was Ruby Ryan and I used to drink...a LOT.)
I do believe we made money on the trip. Everybody else was pretty well impaired--especially after the Guinness tour--and more than happy to pick up every soggy check. Good times!
Another tour of the Emerald Isle in the future? Nah, but I will have another bowl of those Lucky Charms. Murphy is buying.
|Linda and me looking at yet one more old pile of Irish bricks.|
|Something for the fitness freaks|
|"It's amazin' Seamus, you can eat the stuff you pull out of the water!"|