Top O’the Mornin’ to Yeh
Hi. I’m Irish.
I know what you’re thinking, “no, you’re not. You’re some kind of Mexican.”
Actually, I’m Chinese-Filipino-Italian-and, wait for it, -Irish.
“Loman,” is actually the Irish spelling. With “Lohman” being Scottish and “Lowman” being English. That might be vice-versa. Or not true at all and completely made up by my grandfather, but he’s 90 and fought in both theaters of operation during WWII, so we let him make up whatever he wants. He shot down 13 Zeros. What have you done with your life?
My name is actually pretty Irish, Matthew Loman, but the Asian and Italian heritage are the cultures that were impressed on me the most. My grandmother was first-generation Italian, the first of her family to be born here, in Chicago, and she still didn’t speak English until she was six and the city made her go to school. She was less than thrilled that at no point did her parents try to help her learn English and just shipped her off to first grade.
I was actually born in the Philippines and flew to America with my mom to be with my dad when I was only a couple of months old. Though thanks to Filipino hereditary laws I was born an American citizen. *drinks a Bud as eagles soar overheard*
The Lomans, however, were here for some time, so far back that no one remembers when they came over from Ireland. They can trace themselves back to their ranches and farms in Oklahoma and up into the Dakotas, but after that the Lomans’ origins are lost to time. They are simply Americans.
Ironically, despite my name, an affinity for beer from Ireland (the entire United Kingdom, actually), and my favorite soccer team being Celtic FC (which is actually in Scotland, but founded by Irish immigrants [second favorite being Arsenal]), I have very little connection to my Irish heritage.
Except on St. Patrick’s day when I milk it for everything it’s worth.
And you can, too.
Don’t swing for the fences on the Irish heritage. Exceptional cases stand out. You’ve heard the saying that the nail that sticks out gets hammered, right? Well, being hammered and getting hammered are two different things, and it’s important to be low key when embracing your distant/imaginary connection to the Emerald Isle.
If anyone asks if you’re Irish keep it simple: your grandmother’s dad moved to America and she was born here. Unless you have an Irish name, always put the Irish heritage on the maternal side to cover up for why you don’t have an Irish last name. It’s a rookie mistake. Don’t make it.
If you have an Irish last name, you can make it semi-interesting by saying there used to be an “O'” or a “Mc” before your name, but it got changed at Ellis Island Vito Corleone style. It’s a neat anecdote, easy to remember, and you can use it on someone who’s sexy/drunk-enough-to-talk-to-you when you’re waiting in line for beers.
Keep your stories simple so it can be remembered, just like your drink order.
Keep it Simple, Stupid.
If you’re drinking on St. Patrick’s Day you can order beer, whiskey, or beer and whiskey. That’s it. Maybe, if you’ve ordered a lot of drinks already or are tipping well on every order, you can ask for a mixer, but that’s it. St. Patrick’s Day is not about cocktails or some bullshit vodka from made from grapes (while we’re on the subject: what the fuck, France), or anything fancy. It’s about beer, whiskey, and getting drunk enough to tell your friends you love them and ask out that girl from work/the gym/your building/Whole Foods.
You don’t think your server would prefer to be in your position? Who wouldn’t want to take over a booth and and just go to work? Instead they’re giving up St. Patrick’s Day to help you and all your idiot friends (idiots that you love) get proper fucked up.
They are heroes.
They serve that others may drink. You owe them gracious tips, a patient attitude, and simple drink orders that they can remember. Remember, the nicer you are and the easier your order, the more they’ll come back to you, the oasis of sanity in a boiling sea of impatient, drunken assholes.
Be the difference.
Don’t Drink Guinness.
Sacrilege, right? More like forward planning. Guinness is a wonderful and delicious beer and if someone says “Irish beer” to you, it’s probably the first place your mind goes. Which is fine. I wish America made such a tasty and deliberate beer we could all be proud of, but we don’t because Prohibition happened and murdered all the smaller breweries in the 1920’s, and that’s why America is just now producing beers that don’t taste like piss.
If you want to drink a Guinness, do it at the beginning as a way to start it off or at the end of the night for your victory beer, but chugging Guinness all day is folly. Drinking a Guinness is like drinking a loaf of bread. It’s the spiritual descendant of the Egyptian slave rations and the official ancestor of Mudders’ Milk from Firefly.
While a damn good beer, it is not an all day chugging beer. If you’re the DD or you need to be ready for work tomorrow and not hung over sweating hops, Guinness is a good beer to sit and slowly enjoy. However St. Patrick’s Day is largely about volume. It’s about going to a bunch of different bars, or opening up a tab at your favorite watering hole and staying until they make you leave. You can’t do that with five pints turning into a lump of cement with light chocolate notes in your stomach.
Find something else you can drink all day, either as an endurance session, or chug quickly should the call to arms arise. Chugging Guinness is both unpleasant and a little insulting to the beer itself.
Listen to the Sober Person.
Somehow, someway I’m almost always the adult. It sucks. What really sucks is when I can’t get a drunk person to listen to me about them being too loud, or obnoxious, or that we should just go. They always think they know better than me, which is weird because they’re the ones who’re drunk.
Please, please, please hear me on this; if you’re lucky enough to not have to be the sober driver, listen to the person who is. They know better than you. No one, absolutely no one, is better when they’re drunk. No drunk will ever know better or have a superior understanding of social graces and mores than the person who is not obliterated out of their minds on well whiskey.
I don’t know what the age limit is for not putting up with drunken bullshit, but I’ve blown past it and I’m friends with many, many, many people, all of whom I care for deeply, that I will never drink with ever again, because they’re impossible to deal with when drinking.
Don’t be that guy who ruined St. Patrick’s Day for everyone. Don’t be the one blight on an otherwise great day of food, drink, and general light-hearted debauchery.
Build a Foundation.
Don’t go out and start drinking hungry. St. Patty’s is a marathon, not a sprint. If you want to start drinking in the morning and still be going on into the evening, for the love of God, eat something, preferably starchy and/or deep fried. Corned beef and cabbage is great as long as there are a bunch of potatoes, otherwise it’s just broth and a very tough meat that will help soak up nothing.
Fried potato balls are getting popular as appetizers, especially around St. Patrick’s day thanks to being easy to make and institutionalized racism. Essentially mashed potatoes, seasoned, lightly breaded, and deep fried they are perfect as something to keep you on an even keel throughout the day and into the night when everyone else gets off work and you can settle in for the serious business of drinking.
Ironically cheap Chinese food is perfect for St. Patrick’s Day as it is carb based, usually very greasy with lots of wonderful options for fried food, and they are everywhere. I stumble across cheap Chinese all over the place in central Indiana, let alone larger cities. If you’re worried about having your Irish cred, invented or otherwise, challenged, load up on lo-mein before you meet up with everyone.
Whatever you decide on, for the love of God, have something in your stomach or look forward to spending the rest of your life as the person that can’t hold their booze, because you threw up on a cop car during hour four of the drink-a-thon.
Go Forth and Be Wasted
That’s all I’ve got, kids. It’s up to you if you want to go out, grill out, drink alone in the dark, play drinking games, or get deep in the ways that only a well-lubricated human being can, but whatever style you choose to get wasted, I think the five things I’ve discussed will serve you and whomever you’re drinking with quite well.
Please, be safe. As I said, along with New Year’s and the day before Thanksgiving, St. Patrick’s Day is one of the biggest amateur drinking days of the year. Get a cab, walk to and from, find a designated driver and be good to them, whatever you have to do to get home safe.
See you guys Tuesday,
Posted on March 17, 2011, in Lists, Matt Loman and tagged beer, booze, drunk, ireland, irish, Matt Loman, party, party til puke, st. paddy's, st. paddy's day, st. patrick's day, whiskey. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.