I actually like the month of March. The weather, while unpredictable, is gearing up for warmer days to come. March is a time when folks start to think spring in Michigan may actually arrive. It’s also a time when car dealerships and furniture stores have Irish-themed sales for St. Patrick’s Day – my son Sean’s birthday. So, while I am sitting here thinking about March, my son and St. Patrick’s Day, I might as well share my thoughts on those subjects (and tell some jokes).
First, to help all you of non-Irish descent let me say this: Green beer is for wanna-bees. Don’t drink green beer.
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John Theodore Rush — aka Sean — is either blessed or cursed. Son Sean’s birthday is March 17 — affectionately called Saint Sean’s Day by Clan Rush. By the way, those not familiar the name Sean is not pronounced Seen nor Scene. It’s Sean, excuse me . . . S-h-a-w-n. And, Sean is Irish for the name John.
When he was only almost six-years-old I asked him what his favorite Irish song was. “I’m not sure what it is called,” he said all those years ago. “I haven’t heard it in so long. It’s the one with Captain Farrell. They say, ‘Musha ring dumma do damma da.’”
That, my friends, is a song all six-year-olds should be aware of . . . Whiskey in The Jar. It’s a nice little ditty about our hero (who tells/sings the story) who robs Captain Farrell of his money, which and I quote, “made a pretty penny.” The nameless hero takes his booty to his own main squeeze, Jenny. When the hero goes to sleep, Jenny calls the captain, swipes our hero’s rapier and submerses his pistol’s ammunition in water. He’s taken prisoner and laments about his “darling sportin’ Jenny.”
Like I said, a great song that all six-year-olds should know and recite.
This summer after college, Sean is planning on studying in Ireland for a month. Going to Ireland is something I always wanted to do, but haven’t. It’s something his grandfather, my father always wanted to do, but didn’t and something his great-grandfather, John Rush, wanted to do, but didn’t. I’m very proud my son can fulfill that Rush dream. He’s worked hard and deserves it.
Now, for some jokes to lighten things up.
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An Irishman fell a hundred feet from a building site and asked if he was hurt by the fall. “Indeed not,” he replied, “It wasn’t the fall that hurt me at all, it was the sudden stop.”
* * *
Murphy said to his daughter, “I want you home by eleven o’clock.”
She said, “But Father, I’m no longer a child!”
He said, “I know, that’s why I want you home by eleven.”
* * *
Murphy told Quinn that his wife was driving him to drink. Quinn thinks he’s very lucky because his own wife makes him walk.
* * *
A Texan rancher comes to Ireland and meets a Kerry farmer. The Texan says: “Takes me a whole dang day to drive from one side of my ranch to the other.” The Kerry farmer says: “Ah sure, I know, sir. We have tractors like that over here too.”
* * *
Padraic Flaherty came home drunk every evening toward ten. Now, the Missus was never too happy about it, either. So one night she hides in the cemetery and figures to scare the bejeezus out of him. As poor Pat wanders by, up from behind a tombstone she jumps in a red devil costume screaming, “Padraic Sean Flaherty, sure and ya’ don’t give up your drinkin’ and it’s to hell I’ll take ye’.” Pat, undaunted, staggered back and demanded, “Who the hell ARE you?” Too that the Missus replied, “I’m the devil, ya’ damned old fool.” To which Flaherty remarked, “Damned glad to meet you sir, I’m married to yer sister.”
* * *
Paddy was found dead in his backyard, and as the weather was a bit on the warm side, the wake was held down to only two days, so his mortal remains wouldn’t take a bad turn.
At last his friends laid him in the box, nailed it shut and started down the hill into the churchyard. As it
was a long, sloping path and the mourners were appropriately tipsy, one fellow lurched into the gatepost as they entered the graveyard. Suddenly, a loud knocking came from the box.
Paddy was alive!
They opened the box up and he sat up, wide-eyed, and they all said, “Sure, it’s a miracle
All rejoiced and they went back and had a few more drinks, but later that day, the poor lad died.
Really died. Stone-cold dead.
They bundled him back into his box, and as they huffed and puffed down the hill the next morning, the priest said, “Careful now, boys; mind ye don’t bump the gatepost again.”
And, I’ll leave you with an Irish toast . . .
Always remember to forget the things that made you sad. But never forget to remember the things that made you glad.
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