Tuesday, March 17, 2009

St. Patrick's Day redux

3... 2... 1... It is now officially St. Patrick's Day here in Hawaii.

I've already written as good a St. Paddy's Day post as I ever will, back in 2006, so just go there.

Otherwise, there's little for me to write about. Here's a brief history of the Irish in Hawaii — sort of vague stuff, like how there must've been Irish aboard Captain Cook's ships. There's an Irish club here.

There are probably even fewer Irish in Korea, though there are a lot more Catholics. Here's a site dedicated to the Irishmen and Irishwomen who gave up their lives during the Korean War. The Korea Herald lists some Green Day activities, though they've mostly passed. The Marmot in 2008 had a nice post on the Irish legacy in Korea. And here's the site for O'Kim's at the Westin Chosun Hotel, a reasonably authentic Irish pub (like I would know) that used to (still does?) have in-house live Irish bands.

A military retiree friend of mine would drag me down there on every major Irish holiday for a drink (spread out over two hours, as I was the designated driver). He'd also try to drag me down there for the minor holidays, which for drinking purposes was any day that wasn't a major holiday. No walking stereotype of a hot-headed, boozing Irishman was Mr Buckley, no.

[above: Irish Pride parade in Taehangno (대학로) in 2007. Snagged from DJ Malone's Flickr site. I'm pretty sure the guy on the right is holding up a sign declaring the Tokto is also an emerald island and it's ours.]


  1. That's my photo. Cool. Yeah, it's a surprisingly big parade that's put on in Hyewah (Seoul) every St.Patrick's Day. The Koreans seem to love an excuse to party.

  2. Well, I've lived in Korea off and on since I was a teenager, and I can tell you that back in the day there was no such stuff.

    There just weren't enough Irish people or other interested "foreigners" or Koreans to do this. I'm glad to see it's pretty well tolerated, but that's probably from, as you say, the Korean excuse to party (or at least to put on festivals).


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