Hank Speaks So Listen. by Hank Bienent
The Irish are coming !!
Saint Patrick’s day has special meaning to many in this country since about 30.3 (pronouced terty–pernt–tree in Eire on my 2012 visit) million Americans are linear descendants. Not only is the story of this Roman patrician (hence the name) and the not quite Roman Catholicism he introduced worth reading but Ireland has special family meaning for me:
-Paternal Grandma (who I never really knew) was born and raised in County Donegal, the most isolated and most Gaelic County and naturally was a Dougherty, also known as Daugherty, Dogherty, Dogharty, O’Doherty, O’Dochartaigh, Dorrity or what else an illiterate group could come up with.
-My eldest son was born on MARCH 17
-My daughter got her graduate degree from Queens University in Belfast.
-I was educated by Nuns from that misty green place and the memory of their thick brogues still stirs feelings of obedience/terror in me.
-My elderly but vigorous Dad spent a great afternoon sitting at a Metairie St Paddy’s Day parade with beer in hand, surrounded by grandkids. He announced he wasn’t feeling well, got in the back of my brother’s car and died peacefully on the drive home. A loss, no doubt, but it sure beats spending one’s last years racked with pain or half conscious lying in a nursing home bed and for a man who was born and raised in Dorchester, MA – so Irish it has been called Dublin’s western most suburb – it was a fitting end of the journey.
I won’t talk about the Irish beer scene which is generally uninspired although improving with the recent introduction of microbrewries to shake off the “all Guinness and only Guinness” situation.
And here is a final comment for you boys and girls – the Nuns used to pronounce it “poisoned gulls”…
A car full of Irish nuns sitting at a traffic light in downtown Dublin, when a bunch of
rowdy drunks pull up alongside of them. “Hey, show us yer tits, ya bloody penguins!”
shouts one of the drunks.
Quite shocked, Mother Superior turns to Sister Thomas Bridget and says, “I don’t
think they know who we are; show them your cross.”
Sister Thomas Bridget rolls down her window and shouts, “Piss off, ya fookin’ little
wankers, before I come over there and rip yer balls off!”
Sister Thomas Bridget then rolls up her window, looks back at Mother Superior, quite
innocently, and asks, “Did that sound cross enough?”