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St. Patrick's Day in Quarantine

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  • Tip Bones

March 17th is here again, but you'll likely find the bars and pubs a little emptier than in years past. COVID-19 is sweeping across the world, and here in the United States, citizens are panicking and self-quarantining in record numbers. Employers have enacted remote work until the crisis subsides. All schools in my state have been closed for the remainder of the month, or moved to online classes only. Necessities such as toilet paper disappear as fast as they can be restocked. In this time of crisis, it's hard to justify going to the store for peanut butter, let alone out for drinks.

But for some, this year is getting back to the roots of the tradition of St. Patrick's Day. While the modern holiday, at least in the U.S., seems to be just an excuse to binge drink, the massive alcohol consumption isn't what the holiday honors. St. Patrick of Ireland (who interestingly enough was not born in Ireland, but in Roman-held Britain in the 5th century), was a missionary and a bishop, who is well known for converting much of Northern Ireland's pagan population to Christianity during his lifetime. It doesn't seem to mesh with the more modern idea of the holiday: the parades, parties, and huge celebrations weren't all that common until the 20th century!

So this year, many are celebrating the holiday at home. Some will drink and have a rowdy celebration while isolated, and some might use this time to reflect of the history of the holiday. There's not a wrong way to celebrate this day, but I just hope that the panic buying and doomsday prepping hasn't made us forget about St. Patrick.

Photo: Pixabay