Saint Patrick’s Day, March 17, with its parades, green beer, and Irish humor, is here again. Suddenly many of us here in the Rio Grande Valley, Texas, and around the world find real or imagined Irish connections, a time to associate with others who claim Irish links celebrating Saint Patrick’s Day for the fun of it.
The Tea Room Magic Trick
Charles and Paddy go into the tearoom for refreshments. While ordering, the Englishman, Charles, waited for the baker to turn his back. He then sneaked three buns, putting them quickly into his pocket before sitting at their table.
At their table, Charles turned to Paddy and proudly said, “Did you see that? It took talent and nerve to take those buns without the baker seeing me.”
The Irishman is horrified, “Charles," he says, "that’s shoplifting. Let me show you how to do it honestly and still end up with three free buns.”
So, Paddy calls the baker over to their table, “Sir, I want to show you an Irish magic trick.”
The baker agreed.
The Paddy asks for a bun, then proceeds to eat it. He repeats the process two more times.
The confused baker says, “Okay, paddy, but where’s the magic trick?”
The Irishman replies, “Check this Englishman’s pockets.”
But What is Irish humor?
As a non-Irish reader, you might say sarcastic comments, purposefully misleading statements, and making fun of another person’s misfortunes are not humorous.
Irish Gaelic has a word for this; the word “craic” (A Noun pronounced "crack").
In Ireland, asking, "Do you have any Craic (crack)” is not asking if you have drugs. So, “Any Crack” means do you have any news which may include humorous stories?
Liam Falls Off the Ladder and Gets Covered In Green Paint
Liam was standing on a ladder painting the green rain guttering of his house when he slipped and fell onto the flower garden. When he stood up, green paint covered his hair and clothing.
“Liam,” shouted Mrs. O’Reilly from across the street. “Stop fooling around; you don't need that sleek green coat to make your skinny body look more like a Leprechaun.”
A Good Crack
In this case, Liam was probably not hurt badly. Mrs. O’Reilly showed her concern, and Liam would have responded in a similar disrespectful tone in a real-life situation. This tale is what the Irish would call a funny newsworthy story, "A good Crack." You can dissect this tale, but that is overthinking the words, which is not the Irish way.
The Last Word
If an Irish teacher says, “You’re working too hard,” you might want to think the opposite is true.
Have a Fun Saint Patrick’s Day.