Top o’ the marnin’ to ya! St. Patrick’s Day always reminds me of a wee embarrassing moment I had whilst in university.
I think it’s safe to say that St. Patty’s Day, especially for the student population, is an just excuse to ramp up the drunken debauchery. I’ll remind you of my city’s claim to fame from St. Patty’s Day two years ago—the Fleming Drive Riot. Because here in Canada, when the weather is unseasonably warm in March, we riot.
Ok, it’s not usually that bad. But, it is crazy chaotic and the lines to get into bars are pretty outrageous. That is, if you make it to a bar and are not already passed out at a pancake kegger.
(By mentioning the riot and pancake keggers, I’m now realizing I’ve set you up for a much more scandalous story than this actually is. Sorry about that.)
In my final year of university, I couldn’t join the St. Patty’s Day celebrations until later, for some reason. I actually can’t remember why. Let’s go with I was in class and studying really hard. Sounds about right.
By the time I lined up with a couple of my friends to get into a bar the rest of my friends were already in, the line was MASSIVE. If I was faced with that line today, I’d say a resounding, “Fuck that,” go home and watch episodes of The West Wing (actually, that’s just my routine for anything these days…. The West Wing is soooooooo good!!!). Since I was 21 and not being with my crew on St. Patty’s Day would be the END OF THE WORLD, we stuck it out in the line. For, I think, two hours.
As the minutes ticked by, sobriety crept in. What also crept in…. line-jumpers. These scum-of-the-earth people see a line, completely disregard the social conventions a line implies, and cut their scummy way through it.
While we were waiting, some guys somehow managed to squeeze their way through the crowd, pretending they had some sort of clearance, and ended up right ahead of me and my friends. I tapped on their shoulders.
“Excuse me,” I said. “What makes you think you can cut in line?” Ballsy, I KNOW!
Side note: Back in the day, if I was tipsy while waiting in a line and saw something unjust happen, I thought I was invincible and became confrontational. One time, as the bouncer let me and my friends in and shut the rope behind us, these chicks who were next in line got pissed that it wasn’t their turn. One of them yelled, “What? You’re letting those ugly bitches in and not us?” I could have just let it go, but for some reason, I thought the best retort would be to wave my finger and very emphatically say to her, “Honey, you should not be wearing skinny jeans, mmmkay?” and then run inside.
Honey??? Who was I? Mrs. Winslow?
So back to the St. Patty’s Day line. These guys were actually as nice and polite as they could be for scum-of-the-earth line-jumpers. They wore golf shirts and struck me as the type who had just gotten as close to breaking the law as they ever would get by cutting in this line.
They were good enough to indulge me in some smart-ass banter as I told them how terrible they were for doing such a despicable thing. I was on a pretty good roll. I called them a lot of names. They just agreed with everything I said to appease me and avoid a scene. Their complacency eventually frustrated me and I ended our conversation by calling them jerks and turning my back to them in a huff.
We were getting closer to the front of the line now. Behind me, I overheard part of the hooligan line-jumpers’ conversation.
“Yeah man, P.J. and Aaron are inside already.”
We’re meeting P.J. and Aaron….
What are the odds they are referring to another set of P.J. and Aaron’s?
With my luck….
I huddled my friends close and whispered.
“I just heard them say they’re meeting P.J. and Aaron!”
“Are you sure?”
“Yes, I’m sure! Do you think they could be referring to another P.J. and Aaron?”
“Not a chance.”
“Great. Now we’re going to be hanging out with them all night! Was I really mean to them?”
“Yeah, you were pretty aggressive.”
“Dammit. Now what?”
“You need to make the nice.”
“That’s what I was afraid of.”
I turned and tapped on their shoulders again.
“Soooooo….hey guys! Me again. Did I hear you say you’re meeting P.J. and Aaron?”
“Because…. the funny thing is, and you’ll get a kick out of this, we’re also meeting P.J. and Aaron!”
When we got inside, sure enough, the nefarious line-jumpers were with P.J. and Aaron and all my other friends. I made a conscious effort to avoid the scoundrels all night until they left.
Later, one of my friends approached me.
“So…. what the hell happened in line?”
“WHY? What did they say? They were in the wrong, you know. I was just standing up for all the people in the world who get cut off in line…”
“They asked me why I was friends with ‘that bitch’ and pointed at you.”
Yup. Sounds about right.
I can’t help it. They’re always after me lucky charms!