Not a drop of Irish blood flows through my veins — well, at least not any of which I am aware. Not too long ago, a long-lost relative shared some genealogy information that indicated that the branch of the family on my mother’s side that we thought was English was actually Scottish. There’s a Scottish laird among my ancestors — and who knows, maybe he took up at some point with an Irish lass?
But for the most part, I’m German — three quarters German, in fact. But we Germans share one big trait with the Irish — a love of beer — so I might have to hoist a pint to St. Paddy after work tonight. I will also toast a few special people in my life who have a connection to this special Irish day.
First of all, there are my favorite aunt and uncle, Russ and Jan Rickers, who are celebrating their 51st wedding anniversary today. OK, they’re now my only remaining aunt and uncle, but they’ve always had special status in my life — and even more so since the passing of both my parents. So a toast can be offered on their behalf this evening.
And I can’t forget the Irish lass who I’ve known the longest. High school classmate Shannon is enthusiastically Irish. Throughout high school, we had a running joke in which I called her a nasty Irish name and she called me an equally nasty English one. This strange ritual had roots in our English literature class.
Somehow Shannon is Irish enough that she arranged to give birth to one of her beautiful daughters on St. Patrick’s Day. How’s that for timing? So another toast goes out to my favorite Irish friend, Shannon, and her beautiful babbling Brooke on her birthday.
If I really wanted to indulge in a lot of green beer tonight, I’m sure I could come up with a few more Irish connections to toast, but it’s only Thursday, so I’ll limit myself to these toasts.