Monday, March 17, 2008
The Luck of the Irish
It wasn't the potato famine that brought my grandfather Claude's family to American shores. His uncle was stoned to death in Northern Ireland for being a Protestant in Northern Ireland. The family then immigrated to Northwestern Pennsylvania where my great grandmother was born in Pithole, PA in 1859.
Pithole,PA is now somewhat historically reconstructed, I understand, as it was in existance for only three years during an oil boom.
My grandfather was a prankster, but was extremely serious that I must wear orange on St. Patrick's Day. He had heard all the stories in detail from his mother, but I heard only the above. That was to be enough for me to understand the importance of the Wearing of the Orange, not the Green. While I was in public school, though, one had to have green on for St. Paddy's Day or one was pinched throughout the day. Socks counted.
Although my grandfather didn't imbibe much, my mother bought him the pictured trivet in remembrance of the Irish flowing through his (our) veins. In the Pittsburgh area, everyone is Irish on March 17th. Green beer courses through the taps. Silliness abounds.