5 reasons St. Patrick's Day is actually a Jewish holiday
On March 17th the city becomes a leprechaun's playground — as well as a New Yorker's worst nightmare.
Bars open at dawn, the streets get flooded with bridge and tunnelers in top hats and the beer flows a disturbing green. It's as if the "Lucky Charms" mascot hijacks the city for 24 hours every spring.
But as us non-participants hide perched in a tree, chewing on our hair frantically wishing for it to stop, we can't help but notice a few parallels between St. Patty's and themes that run through a lot of Jewish holidays.
5 ways St. Patrick's Day might secretly be a Jewish holiday:
1. It’s an excuse to drink. Whether it’s Kiddush, Shabbos, Passover, your niece’s bat mitzvah or your own bris, Jews enjoy their booze.
2. It’s an excuse to eat. I’m pretty sure the first commandment in the Old Testament was originally, “Thou shalt not get up from the table until thou hatest thyself.”
3. It’s technically a solemn affair. Contrary to popular belief, March 17th is the date St. Patrick died, not the day he was born. So those who commemorate today are actually celebrating his death not his life. Buzz kill! But no group knows how to devote an entire holiday to reflecting on bitter memories better than Members of the Tribe. Don’t challenge our capacity for wallowing in acute despair!
4. You are supposed to wear blue but everyone wears green. We don't know how this one applies but it seems like something Jews might do.
5. St. Patrick’s Day was originally a dry holiday. Fasting holidays like Yom Kippur, Tisha B'av and the Fast of Esther (that's not even close to all of them) come to mind. As Jews we derive a bizarre satisfaction from depriving ourselves. Almost as much as we love to eat and drink.
St. Patrick's Day
St. Patty's Day