Friday, March 17, 2006

Kiss me, I'm Irish today.

Well, another St. Patrick's Day is upon us, a twenty-four-hour period when everybody is honorary Irish. A day when, in the spirit of being Irish, we can slug people over the matter of what they're wearing.

On this day, in Chicago, they apparently use food dye to color the local waters green.

[photo: The Chicago River is green with env... ironmental damage.]

We in Orange County don't do that. The Santa Ana River really has far too little water in it for that to work, and our second body of water, the Pacific Ocean is, well, let's just say that along the coast it's already sort of greenish (occasionally prompting beach closings).

I celebrated St. Paddy's Day by imbibing two free beers at the Seoul Foreign Press Club. Then I beat up a couple snakes. I may go to O'Kim's tomorrow and imbibe some more, although I'm already dangerously close to my annual beer quota.

Anyway, happy St. Patrick's Day, one and all.

And remember: don't drink and drive, 'cuz you might spill your drink.

And in the spirit of the sometimes-heard suggestion that Koreans are the Irish of Asia, here are some apt things in common:
  1. Both are divided land
  2. Both countries have their share of heavy drinkers.
  3. Symmetry in naming the land: Ireland is the land of ire; Korea is the country of han. (It helps if you know that "Korea" is hanguk in Korean, literally the land of the Han people, though Han in the country name [韓] is a different Chinese character from that of the cultural concept of unresolved resentment [恨], or that of the other Han people, the Han Chinese [漢] who aren't very nice toward the Tibetans. It also helps if you know that in English "ire" means anger and wrath.)
  4. Heads of Easter Island proportions.
  5. A tendency to excuse bad behavior by people who were heavily inebriated at the time.
  6. A healthy cartooning industry.
  7. Oppression by a neighbor just a short boat ride away.
  8. Lingering animosity toward neighbor just a short boat ride away.
  9. Heroes whose exploits involved violence toward neighbor just a short boat ride away.
  10. Singing.
  11. More Catholic than their neighbors.
  12. Lots of greenery.
  13. Brad Pitt couldn't do an accurate Korean accent to save his life, either.
  14. Light, creamy skin among many of the women.
  15. A heavy concentration in Chicago and New York City.
  16. Little acceptance of gay people in parades.
  17. Lingering violence to "solve" political issues.
  18. Neither has hosted the winter Olympics.
  19. People from both countries sound funny when they speak English.
  20. Emigrants from both tend to do a hell of a lot better than those who stayed behind.
  21. Even those who stayed behind are starting to do much better.
On Columbus Day, I'll explain why Koreans are also the Italians of Asia, and on Yom Kippur I'll explain why Koreans are the Jews of Asia. Because I know that ethnic stereotypes are the reason people come to this blog.

[photo: With Kushibo's patented bifocal beer goggles, you can see simultaneously what the same girl looks like both while you're sober (girl on right) and after you've had about five of those nasty green concoctions (girl on left). Only $29.95 at participating stores.]

1 comment:

  1. You forgot to mention that the Irish economy is sometimes refered to as the Celtic Tiger.


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