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Wet Noodle Posse | Blog

Monday, March 16, 2009

Why I Hate St. Patrick's Day


First let me establish that I am three quarters Irish, that my sisters and I all have “een” in our names, and that I do wear green on March 17th , mostly so I won’t get pinched. I have no idea how that little tradition began, but children in school yards all over the U.S. who don’t wear green tomorrow will run in fear from their classmates due to this “cute” custom. I also love a good parade, and some of the best non Mardi Gras parades are held on St. Patrick’s Day. Green Beer? I could take it or leave it. What made me hate the holiday as a child was—cue evil music—Corned Beef and Cabbage.

Just the idea of it, the memory of the boiling cabbage, its odor punching me as I walked in the door after school, breaks me out in a cold sweat. The way I was raised I had to clean my plate before I could leave the dinner table. Believe me, I would have been happy to send starving children the soggy cold cabbage on my plate, cold because I saved the worst for last. A method I also employed with lima beans and green peas. I’d start with the boiled potatoes (seasoned with a pinch of salt and maybe, if I was lucky, pepper), move on to the corned beef, then gag and dry heave my way through the cabbage. Leftovers on the 18th weren’t much better, corned beef hash with a poached egg on top. At least Mom didn’t put the cabbage in the hash where it could touch and contaminate the potatoes and beef.

There is a reason we don’t see Irish cuisine-based restaurants popping up on every corner. O’Charley’s might have an Irish sounding name, but it does not serve traditional Corned Beef and Cabbage. Boiled food, dry soda bread, undercooked bacon and eggs are not all that appetizing. There’s a reason the Irish are better known for their beer, stout, and whiskey—it helps the food go down.

What foods did you develop an aversion to as a child? Have you tried them as an adult? Will you be eating your Corned Beef and Cabbage on St. Patrick’s Day?

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10 Comments:

At 5:15 PM, Blogger Ladyhawk said...

Oh, now there's an intriguing question. Oatmeal, cooked oatmeal. We won't discuss here the horrible experience, but I still hate the smell of it cooking. I did like oatmeal cookies, though I had to wait until they were cool. However, I can't eat them at all now. I'm terribly allergic to bran of any kind. Lima beans are also on the banned forever list. Cabbage actually makes my mouth sore when I eat it, in any form. Can't ever remember having corned beef, though I have had haggis in Gretna Green. Never again, the haggis that is, not being in Gretna Green. I'd love to visit Scotland again. :-)
~Judy

 
At 6:15 PM, Blogger MaryC said...

I actually love corned beef but I never cook it with cabbage - just the potatoes which get plenty of butter. Yum but yeah, bad for me.

Soda bread I can take or leave depending on the source. When it's good, it's very very good, but when it's dry it's horrid. *g*

The worst food experience I had as a child was discovering that the "tongue" my mother routinely served really was from an animal's tongue. NOTHING could make me swallow it after making that discovery!

 
At 6:25 PM, Blogger Theresa Ragan said...

Ewwww, tongue. That's gross. I don't like liver either or peas. I don't like dates or fruit cake. I didn't like pie or tapioca growing up but I like it just fine now. :)

Judy, I've been to Ireland but never to Scotland.

I don't think I've ever tried soda bread...

 
At 7:16 AM, Blogger Diane Gaston said...

Luckily, although I always felt Irish, I discovered when I was an adult that I probably have no more than a drop or two of Irish blood in me. Which might explain why my mother never served corned beef and cabbage.

Judy, cabbage makes your mouth sore? Some kinds of beer and wine make my ears itch.

 
At 7:32 AM, Blogger Mo H said...

Judy,
You're the second person I know that has problems with oatmeal. My husband is the other one!

 
At 7:33 AM, Blogger Mo H said...

MaryC,
Yes, butter with the potatoes is a must! Yikes on eating tongue.

 
At 7:35 AM, Blogger Mo H said...

Theresa,
I hear you on the tapioca. I think it's the texture. You expect smooth since it's pudding, but you get lumpy. I remember not liking the skin that formed on pudding as a kid and being awfully glad when Jell-o came out with the instant kind that didn't make a skin.

 
At 7:37 AM, Blogger Mo H said...

Diane,
Apparently there are some benefits to not having much Irish in you--no corned beef and cabbage! That's interesting about foods making your ears itch. That would be a great trait for a character in one of your books.

 
At 11:52 AM, Blogger Karen said...

Mo! You and I must be sisters separated at birth! I hate the smell of cabbage cooking, peas and lima beans, too. My family was one of those clean your plate households and I can't tell you how many nights I sat at the table with that slimy stuff in front of me. My stubbornness always won out, though. I learned the hard way never to make a child eat anything s/he doesn't like...it leads to lifelong food prejudices.

 
At 6:30 PM, Blogger Mo H said...

Amen, Karen! Amen!

 

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