Mar 18, 2011

St. Patrick's Day-After

I just deleted three paragraphs about how simple St. Patrick's Day used to be when I was a kid and how it became such a complicated event for me after I immigrated to the States—especially after I had kids (Irish-American kids, no less!), and felt responsible for shaping their relationship with—and perception of—Ireland. 
Yawn. I'm done with the overanalysis and the immigrant snobbery and the negativity. I decided this year that I wanted things to be simple again ... and so they are!
I had a great day yesterday handing out Irish- and Irish-American-authored books to commuters as part of The Irish Arts Center's inaugural Irish Book Day. There were volunteers at transit hubs in all five boroughs sending New Yorkers off to work and school with a smile and a good book. I was on the street at the crack of dawn and delighted to deliver some Yeats, Wilde, O'Brien, Binchy, Hamill, Quinn, McCann, and more into the hands of at-first-cynical-but-then-surprised-and-grateful New Yorkers ... "I swear, they're free ... please take a book and enjoy it. No, really, you don't have to pay  me. No, I won't follow you home. Oh, you're very welcome!" 
I wished people a Happy St. Patrick's Day, and for the first time ever, I meant it. 


Kate said...

What a nice idea! I wish I had been able to get a free book!



Jenji said...

Oh my goodness, I wish I had known about this -- what a great initiative and applause to you for participating! I woulda made a special F train trip (yes, I recognize Smiling Pizza).

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