Monday 17 March 2008

Paddy's Day

When you aren't getting up and going out of the house you tend to lose track of the days of the week, and of course the date. This explains why I've only just noticed that it is St Patrick's Day today.

I always get a bit annoyed by St Patrick's Day. It is great if you are Irish to have the national day and the party and all. It is quite a good excuse if you are a student for copious amounts of alcohol consumption. If you are English, however (or any other nationality) I see no need for the excessive celebration of another country's patron saint, especially when there is no celebration for you own patron saint.

Every year there is a parade in London for St Patrick's Day (I had wondered why Piccadilly and environs were closed to traffic at the weekend). This year there was a week long programme of events and a festival. This annoys me annually as this is not the patron saint of England! To give Mayor Ken his due (which I do extremely grudgingly) there was a series of events for St George's Day last year. Is it because the English are not so patriotic or that the English heritage doesn't really lend itself much to celebration? there was nowhere near the high profile for St George as St Patrick received. To be fair Clinton Cards will also sell you St George's Day cards as well as St Patrick's Day. I've never know anyone to send or receive a card on April 23rd though!

It's all incidental this year anyway. Today isn't St Patrick's Day. Not according to the Catholic Church anyway. This year Easter falls extremely early (as discussed in a previous post). This means that this week is Holy Week (the last week before Easter after Palm Sunday which was yesterday and before Good Friday). Holy Week is like the Royal Flush of the religious calendar in that it supersedes all other high days and holy days and bumps Saint's days from the calendar. Apparently in Ireland Saturday was officially St Patrick's Day (the last day before Holy Week began).

I won't be wearing a rose for St George, but I didn't wear green today either.