“When Irish Eyes Are Smiling…”

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Only in the city of Boston does St. Patrick’s Day go from being a one-day-only holiday to a weekend-long affair- but we extend the celebration for as long as possible and my God- do I love it! Even if you’re not Irish (and I believe I’m too small a percentage of it to really count)– you are going to celebrate and enjoy every second of it, damn it- whether you want to or not.

From our cherished traditional parade in Southie, green beers on Boylston Street and our annual Celtic punk shows over at the House of Blues- the city of Boston is briefly turned green for a few days around this time of year and everyone is in high spirits (until the hangovers kick in, anyway.)

I’ve been pretty tame the past few St. Patrick’s Days- focusing on work or playing the role of designated driver for my friends who wanted to see how much Guinness they could ingest before 2 p.m.- but since the holiday fell on a Friday this year, I thought I’d have a bit more fun after I’d left the office for the weekend.

While I only had a couple of beers (and some clover cake- as pictured above) on Friday night- the real party started on Saturday when I headed to Agganis Arena to catch a Dropkick Murphys gig where I had been generously provided a V.I.P. pass that got me club room access and a really great seat by the side of the stage where I could see everything. It was AWESOME. I met and sat with so many wonderful people from all corners of the globe who were just buzzing with excitement and positivity that it really just made the whole afternoon even more fantastic.

The set, probably one of my favorites in recent memory- included new and old favorites alike. My ears are still ringing and I’m still a little hoarse from singing along so loudly- but it was worth it.

After the show, I booked it over to the House of Blues across from Fenway to catch the Murphys Boxing match lineup from ringside (another generous treat!) I’m a big boxing fan, and as the night progressed each fight got more and more intense. The definite highlights were finally seeing two of my favorites- Danny O’Connor and Mark Deluca- both win their respective matches. Dropkick Murphys also played an acoustic set before the main event- which was an added bonus for everyone.

I seriously had the best time and I can’t thank Ken enough for going above and beyond for me with the hookup for the show and the fights. I’m so, so grateful and I’ll cherish the day and the experiences forever!

On Sunday, utterly exhausted from the previous day and night- I didn’t attempt the Southie St. Patrick’s Day parade. Instead, I had brunch and some much-needed coffee with friends before taking a long stroll through the Common and all the way to the waterfront to get my blood pumping and energized. It worked wonders- and watching the sun gradually poke it’s way through the clouds as I passed by plenty of people waiting to get into pubs (and sporting as much green as possible)– it seemed like a fitting and peaceful way to end the weekend before I came home to crash and prepare for work on Monday morning.

Every year I say I’ll make it to the parade and every year something comes up that delays or stops me- but I’m really hoping to make it back to the sidelines in 2018. It’s one of my favorite traditions during the early days of Spring!

xx

“Everyone’s Irish tonight!”

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Nobody does St. Paddy’s Day quite like Boston (except for actual Ireland, of course.) This past Sunday marked South Boston’s annual St. Patrick’s Day parade, with a slightly tweaked route because of the city’s lingering snow mound problem, and I had EVERY intention of making it to the sidelines to watch, clap, and cheer with everyone else- but with the on/off rain, packed public transport, and no place left to park by the time I’d made it into Southie- it was a lost cause. Sean and I ended up heading down to the waterfront, instead- where there was still plenty of Irish spirit on display and still plenty of coffee (sans-whiskey) to keep me going as the weather changed from rain, to sunshine, and finally to an insane amount of snow/sleet over the course of a couple of hours. Spring has to be here soon, right? RIGHT?!

Between Sunday’s festivities and the actual holiday falling on Tuesday, I had more than enough time to partake in the yearly traditions- like listening to a lot of Dropkick Murphys and The Pogues, and watching the first “Boondock Saints” movie while drinking a green beer. I understand those “traditions” might only be limited to my circle of friends and myself, but they just feel so right after all this time.

If I haven’t fled for the West Coast by this time next year, I will definitely be making it to the parade (on time) in 2016. It’s always a lot of fun and I highly recommend anyone visiting the city around St. Patrick’s Day to check it out. It’s just one of those things that everyone has to do at least once when they’re in Boston.

Speaking of- I’ve been putting together a “Things To Do in Boston” type of post. I’ve been debating doing it for a while now, but have only recently started the rough draft. I really love my city, and I’m often asked by those visiting for the first (or tenth) time what there is to do around here. There’s always the usual tourist-y things- like going to Fenway or following the Freedom Trail if it’s nice enough outside (no judgment here. Tourist-y stuff can be really fun sometimes!)– but there’s also a lot of really cool, interesting, and less-crowded places to visit, too. Plus, our bar and restaurant scene is pretty impressive!

I’m hoping to have the post up sooner rather than later- especially now that the nicer weather is trying so hard to fight it’s way through here!

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Erin go Bragh.

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Happy St. Patrick’s Day, everyone- and what a weekend it’s been. In Boston, St. Paddy’s Day is pretty much a week-long affair, filled with parties, concerts, parades, and pub crawls. The past couple of years I either worked through the holiday, or was out of town- but this year I was able to celebrate accordingly- kicking off the weekend with a show from the Dropkick Murphys at TD Garden for their Irish Festival on Friday night.

When the house lights came back on and everyone was exiting the Garden for the night, I was sticky with sweat and beer, and covered in green and white confetti that had rained down on the crowd during “Shipping Up To Boston”- but I had such a good time that I didn’t even care. Between appearances from Danny O’Connor and Ken’s daughter and her step-dancing troupe, to Ken singing “Kiss Me, I’m Shitfaced” in the middle of the crowd and the band closing out the night with a pretty ferocious cover of AC/DC’s “TNT”- it was just so much fun.

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Today I headed down to Dorchester Street to catch the annual South Boston Saint Patrick’s Day Parade. Despite the sunshine, it was really frigid out today, which made standing for the entire two hour celebration more than a little uncomfortable, but it was still a good time. I don’t particularly know what Darth Vader, Storm Troopers,  pirates, or the Ghostbusters have to do with St. Paddy’s Day, but there never really is any rhyme or reason to these sorts of things. Besides, everyone was too much in the spirit of things (see: drunk) to really ask too many questions.

And to close this entry out before I go prepare for tonight’s episode of “The Walking Dead” and to go back to work tomorrow morning, here’s one of my favorite videos to commemorate today’s festivities:

Everyone’s Irish tonight, ladies & gentlemen! Cheers!