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Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Corn beef

Roger O'Green here. It's not just because my last name is Green, and my middle initial is O, that I've always related to St. Patrick's Day. It's the Irish potato famine story of the 1840s that brought so many Irish to the United States which has always resonated with me. Indeed, it was a black man and and Irishwoman whose marriage in the 1870s formed the foundation of one of my favorite books, The Sweeter the Juice.

More to the point, there is a daguerreotype of a woman, some ancestor of my maternal grandmother, who we believe to be Irish, still in my mother's possession. So when I'm doing the wearin' of the green, I come by it (faintly) naturally.

I was walking past a bar/restaurant in Albany yesterday and there was a handwritten sign describing a "corn beef and cabbage" dinner. Oh, where is that guy Jeff Deck when I really need him? He would have corrected the sign to "corned beef".

Here's my favorite corned beef story, which happened ten years ago this week, but which I wrote about a mere three years ago.


Rebecca Hickman said...

I love wedding planning stories. My wedding was pretty simple, too. I told the moms and grandmas and my bridesmaid to wear blue dresses which they picked out themselves. I never saw the outfits until we got to the church.

I liked that book, too.

Daniel Van Riper said...

Yesterday a couple of guys (a bank manager and his assistant) made to me a friendly comment, "On St. Patrick's Day everybody is Irish." Being the social moth that I am, I responded by snarling some response that indicated that I couldn't care less about St. Patrick's Day.

Too late, I realized that I was talking to a couple of black guys, and they were making an effort to relate to me, a white guy.

I keep forgetting to think in terms of race. It gets me in all kinds of trouble.