The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, March 10, 1998, Page 5, Image 5

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    Magically delicious
Drinking Guiness among rules to make St Patrick's Day delightful
junior broadcasting
major and a Daily
Nebraskan columnist.
Celebrating one’s heritage is a
wonderful thing. Unless, of course,
you happen to be of the same lin
eage as myself.
Let’s see, in reality I’m equal
parts Austrian, Czech, Norwegian
and cocker spaniel - oops -1 meant
Swedish. When compared to the rest
of the cultures of the world, these are
probably the four lamest to hail
from, except the Vikings who come
from Norway.
Austria is famous for sausage
and the Vienna Boy’s Choir, a
Freudian country if there ever was
\ Czechoslovakia? What the hell
kind of heritage is that? The only
culture gained from this country is
that I know the word for butt,
because my grandma always threat
ened to kick my little dupa. Don’t
even get me started on the name
itself. I wasted half an hour trying to
figure out how to spell the darn
Then there’s the goofiest country
of all - Sweden. Perhaps the
strangest Swedish ritual is the
Midsummer’s Eve (not to be con
fused with the feminine hygiene
product). The Midsummer’s Eve just
overflows with excitement. The
women pick flowers, and the men
erect a giant fertility pole. Once
erected, the men and women merrily
dance around it eating raw fish and
drinking spiced moonshine. Now do
you see why Sweden is home to
ABBA and Ace of Base?
It’s these ludicrous traditions that
make me envy other cultures.
The aura of May Day is still
intriguing. Four days later, Cinco de
Mayo has me sipping a Corona and
munching on nachos. But the ethnic
type holiday that reigns supreme
comes from the land o’ Lucky
u s me magically delicious non
day known as St. Patrick’s Day, the
only holiday where the Supreme
Court takes the day off. Justice
O’Conner, with a lot of help from
Justice Kennedy, rounds up Justices
Rehnquist, Stevens, Scalia, Souter,
Thomas, Ginsburg and Breyer and
parties like it’s on sale for $19.99
(check it out, Dr. Combs: I know all
nine justices).
Next week you, yes you, are
allowed to become Irish (Italians
need not apply) for one day only.
With St. Patty’s Day a mere seven
days away, I’ve compiled as much of
a comprehensive guide that a person
who is Irish for only one day a year
can put together.
First, here’s a quick background
on the land and the holiday so you
won’t look foolish if a true Irishman
questions your Irish heritage.
St. Patrick’s Day stems from St.
Patrick, the man, the myth, the leg
end. Patrick, the patron saint of
Ireland, wasn’t actually Irish. He
was thought to be bom in Britain,
but nobody knows for sure. Legend
has it he was stolen from his dad’s
farm in Britain by pirates and kept
as a slave for six years as a shepherd
in Ulster, Ireland.
After escaping back to Britain,
St. Patrick devoted his life to God.
He was a deeply religious man and
dreamed of returning to Ireland to
bring Christianity to the Irish sav
ages. As the saying goes, when in
uouDi, convert cm. as a iiioiik, ne is
said to have established more than
300 churches and baptized more
than 120,000 people. To this day his
most remarkable achievement is
when he drove all the snakes out of
Ireland into the sea.
As a nation, Ireland is a figura
tive red-headed stepchild. Going to
war is a staple of Irish tradition.
They’ve won a few but lost many,
many more. The brunt of their tor
ment came from merry old England.
Rich, thuggish landlords seized con
trol in the 18th century and passed a
series of laws that oppressed the
peasant population.
During the middle 19th century,
as things began to look better - pow,
the great potato famine struck the
green island. The sick thing is, most
of the food actually produced was
just shipped to England. In just a
few years, and more than a million
dead later, an entire generation
immigrated to America, and the dis
placed leprechauns began to cele
brate the holiday in the states.
You think this is why they’re
called the “Fighting Irish”?
Anyhoo, about the holiday, if
you don’t harbor any joy for sado
masochism, wear green or you’ll get
pinched a lot.
Step two: If you have the means,
don’t celebrate here. Go to Boston
(unless you’re gay) or Chicago,
home of the largest population of
citizens of Irish descent. The Windy
City gets so happy about St. Patrick
that the backward-flowing Chicago
River is dyed green. In years past,
the late Harry Caray’s liver juices
were squeezed into the river for the
dye, so this year should be interest
Step three: Get good and drunk.
Don’t even think of putting green
coloring in Fludweiser or some
other American swill. It’s an Irish
holiday so drink the finest beverage
the island offers - Guiness. It isn’t
beer, it’s a separate food group. It’s
as black as death, made by who
knows what and as thick as Amy
Rager. It will work you over worse
than what the University of
Nebraska-Lincoln forensics team
does to their competition.
The coolest part is that drinking
Guiness makes you stronger. At first
taste, Guiness might be a little gross,
but after a couple pints your taste
buds will be so warped you’ll never
taste anything again.
The best place for a Guiness is
O’Rourke’s Tavern, which opens
every day at 10:30 a.m. If you’re
feeling adventurous, go to the
Dubliner in Omaha’s Old Market. I
don’t know the exact address, but it’s
on the same street as the 7-Eleven
with six different Slurpee flavors.
Just look for the big green Blarney
stone. A word of caution: Rumor has
it that members of the Irish
Republican Army hang out there, so
be careful.
The IRA brings step four:
Senseless violence. Once you’re
good and loaded on Guiness, get
really angry and threaten anyone
who invades your personal space. If
the Husker soccer team is practic
ing, round up some mates to go
waiuu auu suu i a guuu uju-iasmuucu
soccer riot. Just remember the gen
tlemen’s conduct rule and watch out
for the team during the fight; they’re
a lot tougher than you’d think.
If you really want to go all out,
make some car bombs. I don’t know
how to make them, but I’ve seen the
damage they inflict, and they’re bet
ter than anything for sale in
Missouri. Just remember, I didn’t
tell you to do it.
Step five: As the night winds
down, join hands with your chaps,
sing a final drinking song (“House
of Pain” will^^m^^^G^^^^
pass out.
Vote tomorrow. I’d prefer it was for
me, but I’d really like to see every
one out voting. I promise to rule
with an iron fist and bring sun-shiny
days and lollipops to UNL.)
Rome, if you want to -
Overseas travel opens eyes to a whole new world of experience
CLIFF HICKS is a junior
news-editorial and
English major and a
Daily Nebraskan colum
I never really understood the
world until I left the country.
I mean, I thought I knew all
about it, but until I actually left the
j country, I really knew very little
about die world. Sure, you know it’s
out there and you know it’s differ
ent, but you don’t really understand
that until you’ve seen what it’s like.
I was 17 when I left the country
to see the world. I took a school trip
i wiui my ivaun v^iass. we wem over
seas to Rome, Athens and Turkey.
It was the first time I had been
out of the country that I could
remember. I recall from the start
taking passport photos, filling out
paperwork and walking past a team
of government officials who were
cheering as they saw my name on
the passport application. Heck, the
U.S. government had wanted to
deport me for years anyway, so this
was a great opportunity falling in
their lap.
As I sat in JFK Airport, I wrote a
few words that were to ever haunt
me: “And so begins my first adven
ture - let it not be the last.”
Overseas is nothing like you can
imagine, if you haven’t been. The
first place we went to was Rome,
and Rome, well, I don’t think I
would have left unless I absolutely
had to. We touched down in Rome,
and I could tell it was different just
by the airport.
Sure, there weren’t people trying
to sell me hot dogs every 6 feet like
there had been in JFK, but there was
more to it than that. Rome felt like
home. I had been up nearly 28 hours
by the time we were really settled
into the town, but my eyes were
open with a sense of wonder not
seen since.
The sky was a color of blue I
thought existed only in storybooks,
the buildings so old yet so strong. At
about 2:30 in the morning, one of
the guys I was rooming with joined
me in deciding we wanted a soft
drink. You’d have thought it an easy
quest, but the hostel we were staying
at had no vending machine.
“That’s kind of primitive,” my
colleague said to me.
It’s all a matter of perspective, I
suppose, bee, we were really tmrsty
(and you’re told exhaustively not to
drink the water - it turns people into
newts, so we were told) and so we
were going to get us a drink even if
it killed us.
So we went for a walk. At 2:30
a.m. On the streets of Rome.
Without an escort. Two guys, neither
of us older than 17. Suicidal, right?
What I’m going to tell you might
just change the way you see things.
Not only were we not attacked,
not mugged, not drugged and had
our kidneys stolen (wait, that’s
Mardi Gras), not kidnapped and
sold into slavery, we were actually
helped to find where we were going
by a couple of people who didn’t
speak English.
At 2:30 in the morning, a couple
of people on the streets stopped to
help some foreigners find a damn
can of pop!
If I wanted a pop in New York at
2:30 in the morning, you certainly
wouldn’t catch me venturing onto
the city streets for one. In Rome, I
never felt safer. It was almost alien
to me that I felt safe.
I love big cities, but I’m para
noid by nature. There’s too much out
there that can hurt you, too many
things that want to harm you for
their own reasons. I never felt para
noid in Rome.
I want to go back more than I
can tell you. I stood on top of the
Oracle in Delphi, Greece. I walked
around the Pantheon in Rome and
the Parthenon in Greece. I looked up
and saw the Sistene Chapel.
Perhaps, during those times, I
opened my eyes to everything. I
don’t think I saw as clearly before as
I did after. Maybe I had a third eye
open for the first time in my life. It
did change my life.
i tuuiu spciiu page oner page
telling you all about my experi
ences, piece by piece, day by
day, until I bad covered all 15
days in glorious detail, but
even if I talked for longer
than the time I was actually
there, I couldn’t capture the
experience of being over
Most of the people I
know who have been over
seas feel the same way.
It’s something that really
makes you look at our
own country very dif
ferently. It’s like your
eyes have been open for
years, but you’ve never
really looked. Our
try’s like a stereogram,
and foreign countries are
like those two dots at the
top they tell you to detune
your eyes with. Everythin!
comes into focus.
It made me grow up as
son, made me change into a__
me. I went from a cynical1
old to a 17-year-old who was
to really take a long look a
world around him and was
to accept what he saw.
I can’t give you this revelation,
though; it’s one you have to make
for yourself. I can’t tell you where it
lies, because it’s different for every
one else, but I found my answers on
the streets of Rome.
If you go out and
take a look at the
might just gain insight. There’s a
whole world out there, and we’re
only one country.