Thursday, March 17, 2011

Paddy's Day Shoes

About 5 years ago I was shopping with Bear.  This, as some of you may know, can lead to awesome (read "sometimes disastrous") purchases of things that we may not really need.  Most recently, we both bought Betsy Johnson dresses with Pterodactyls on them.  Did we need these? No.  Was it a fashion imperative that we buy them? Oh, yes. There were Pterodactyls on them!

Anyway, 5 years ago we wandered into the shoe department at Nordstroms and I was immediately taken with these amazing green heels.  I rolled up my jeans and I strutted all around the shoe department.  Bear had located the same pair in blue and was also trying them on, which is just shows how awesome we thought they were because Bear almost never wears heels.

"I must have these!" I informed the shoe guardian.

So, I bought these amazing shoes and decided that I should wear them to my College graduation, you know, as a justification for buying them.  Only, I quickly realized that a) the heels were way too high for me to walk into the graduation stadium with out falling because b) there is no ankle support!  I ended up wearing flip-flops and then sitting at my Graduation lunch wearing the heels so I didn't have to walk much.  Fantastic.  Another useless purchase…

Except that they haven't just stayed in the box collecting dust.  I have worn these shoes at least 5 times – I wear them each year on Paddy's Day!  I remember the first time I wore them for this occasion because my friend Siobhan and I went to every grocery store and liquor store in the Monterey area looking for Smithwicks… needless to say, they weren't the best shoe of choice for a park, run into the store, run around the isles, and run back to the car kind of mission.  At least this year, with my desk job, I should be fine…

Also, in honor of St. Patrick's Day, I decided to make treats for the office (like I need an excuse) and I was excited to try out this recipe, albeit slightly modified to be GREEN!  Judging by the fact that I don't typically like brownies and yet I tried to eat my weight in the batter, I would say these were a success.  My only fear was that they might end up looking moldy… Instead my co-workers asked me if I had any "special" ingredients in them!

And then tonight, I will probably kick back with my favorite Irish beer, the aforementioned Smithwicks (pronounced without the W), and watch either Darby O'Gill and the Little People and/or Father Ted.  And possibly eat some greenish food of some sort.  My shoes will be sitting on the floor next to me, looking pretty.

Not sure how to celebrate?  Want some recommendations on my favorite Irish/Irish inspired media? Check out these gems! Note:  If you're not familiar with the accent, you may want to conceder turning on subtitles for some of these. . .

  • The Boondock Saints (1999) :  I can't believe I forgot to add this to the list – this is one of my favourite Irish inspired films.  A uniquely told story of two Irish emigrant brothers who become vigilantes after a rowdy St. Patrick's Day.  Fun drinking game: drink every time they use the F-word.

  • The Commitments (1991) : One of my all time favorite movies about a group of Working class Dubliners (Northsiders) who form a Soul group.  Amazing music, fun story, generally considered one of the best Irish films ever.

  • Darby O'Gill and the Little People (1959) : A Disney production based off of a collection of Leprechaun stories about Darby O'Gill catching King Brian, King of the Leprechauns.  This staple of my childhood features a ton of Irish folk lore and creatures, plus a young (and singing!) Sean Connery.

  • Father Ted (1995) : A Graham Linehan (IT Crowd) sitcom about 3 Irish Priests who live on  Craggy Island, isolated off the coast of Ireland.  Very funny and absurd, and though you don't need to be Irish or Catholic to find it funny, being so adds a whole new dimension. 

  • Intermission (2003) : A love story/crime caper set in modern Dublin involving a breakup, a bank robbery, and a ton of Brown Sauce.  As a drawing point, it stars Cillian Murphy and Colin Farrell.  Oh, and Colm Meaney – he's in everything (including my flight from Dublin to LA once)!

  • Once (2006) : I'm sure you've heard of at least this one.  A musical of sorts played out in modern Dublin.  Very low budget but beautiful music and nearly perfect. Fun fact: Glen Hansard was also in The Commitments.

  • The Quiet Man (1952) : If you've never seen or heard of this, you may be surprised to find a movie featureing John Wayne on this list.  He plays an Irish-American who returns to Ireland to reclaim his family's farm.  Known for it's famously long fight scene, it's a classic that I grew up watching with my Grandparents.

Hope you check some of these out. . .
Do you have any St. Patrick's Day traditions?  Any movies that are a must watch for you?


  1. Excuse me, where is Far and Away on your list of honour?! ;]

  2. I need those whoes. Hand them over.

    Also your pterodactyl dress reminds me of the Magic School Bus. Time for a dinosaur adventure!!