As happens on Christmas
and Valentine's Day
, on St. Patrick's Day every publication is scrambling to churn out a holiday-themed column. A quick Google search reveals
1,243 new articles on the subject.
How do journalists keep from writing the exact same thing? Here are 7
ways to spin a St. Patrick's Day-themed column:
- Use the Holiday to Protest Capitalism Throwing a wet
blanket on the holiday gaiety, filmmaker Michael Moore writes a "St.
Patrick's Day Lament" decrying his favorite targets: insurance
companies, corporations and government contractors. What does this have
to do with St. Patrick's day? These entities all steal "green" (i.e. money) from
working-class Americans. Very clever, Mike.
It to Demand More Open Immigration Policies Immigrants aren't all
that bad, insists The Daily News' Brian O'Dwyer. Remember the Irish?
He calls for a loosening of immigration policies:
unconscionable that so many Americans have forgotten where they came
from, that all of us except Native Americans are immigrants or their
descendants. Slamming the door behind us is not only bad policy, it is
un-American. It doesn't seem as if it should be necessary to remind
decision makers of the contributions Irish-Americans have made to this
country, but apparently it still is.
- Use It to
Remind Readers This Is Basically an American Holiday The Houston
Chronicle's Tara Dooley says today's revelers are
more "red, white and blue" than "green." But to Alex Massie at the British Spectator,
the American tradition has become the most authentic:
days, mind you, it's gone so far that you can no longer easily
determine what's pastiche and what's become parody. In a curious way,
the celebrations in New York, Chicago and Boston are the real deal and
it's the attempts to emulate them in Ireland that are the most
ridiculous part of the entire shenanigans. The American stuff, while
still enjoyably absurd, is at least real fakery; the Irish end of the
bargain is the fake fakery.
- Use it to Give Readers
Unorthodox Ways to Celebrate the Holiday Wired magazine recommends reading a collection of
Irish myths and legends while The Wall Street Journal advocates
two PBS specials on Irish music. There's a wild night.
it to Tell Irish Jokes, "We, of Irish descent, can take the
drinking jokes," writes Tom Purcell at the Moderate Voice.
"Why did God invent whiskey? To keep the Irish from taking over the
Earth. What’s a seven-course Irish meal? A potato and a six-pack. What’s
the difference between an Irish wedding and an Irish wake? One less
- Use it to Make a Quasi-Relevant List
Perhaps the most desperate idea, Stacy Conradt at Mental Floss lists various
celebrity Pats born on St. Patrick's Day. Suffice it to say, she defines
celebrity very broadly. The list includes: Patty Maloney, an actress
with dwarfism who's 11 inches tall; Patrick Adams the producer for
Salt-N-Peppa and R. Kelly; and Patrick McDonnell, a newspaper cartoonist
who created the strip Mutts.
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