Thursday, March 22, 2012

I Love a Parade

St. Paddy's Day in Dallas is quite the event, internets, and this humble blogger is proud to announce that she survived the celebration unscathed. That marathon of a day took no small amount of planning (and liberal, regular applications of bar food) to successfully achieve, however. Totally tactical—that's me!

My sister was able to join the festivities, experiencing the Greenville Avenue St. Patrick's Day Parade for the first time (thank you, Mark Cuban!). It was a special treat for your truly, as her erstwhile work schedule meant we never had the same weekends off. Her new, regular-weekends-off job means more opportunities for malfeasance good, clean fun (hi, Mom!).
 (Here's we are bright and early - the "Before" shot, if you will. No "Afters" were taken. Stop asking.)

As with all the fun drinking holidays, you don't have to be the appropriate nationality to celebrate, but those of us who are get to feel a little smug so there's that. (As my birth mother helpfully pointed out, I'm a mutt... but being Cajun, German, and Black Irish means I have rights to all the best drinking holidays: Mardi Gras, Oktoberfest, and St. Paddy's!)

We started off with the aforementioned parade, getting there ridiculously early to ensure a parking space and prime parade viewing. However, I erred in thinking that the new crackdowns would disallow camp chairs. That would have made the 2 1/2 hour wait a lot easier to take. Hindsight and all that. Meh. But there was some excellent people watching.

A few observations:
  • For an Irish holiday, Irish beer was not the norm. I saw way too many illicit cans of Bud and/or Miller light pass by. (The natural follow up, then, becomes, "How the hell do these amateurs get that pasted on light beer?!?") Guinness was in short supply. Come on, Dallas. Is image really that important? Chance the calories. Live a little.
  • While I appreciate folks that get into the spirit of celebration, the guy in the lederhosen had me bumfuzzled. Beer-based holidays (and the corresponding nationalities) are not interchangeable, mein herr!
  • Being a follower apparently means that when your drunk-ass friend decides to climb a tree for a better view, your equally-drunk-ass self is required to do it, too. Those of us too smart to look up and watch the shenanigans will still, however, end up with bits of bark in our eyes (not that I'm still bitter).
  • For special occasions, a theme song frequently surfaces. Such things cannot be coerced, though; they occur naturally. This parade was sexy and it knew it. At least a dozen times.
  • In a crowd of 100,000 spread over almost 3 miles of city streets, I will still manage to see someone I know.
  • This isn't news, but I'm not a nice person. I'm a good person; these are not the same thing. The crowds made me 1) a little hostile antsy; and 2) regret my lack of Guinness. Once we found the Friendly Drunk, though, and moved away from the Party Rock Crew, I was much happier (even when he nearly got shanked for loudly admonishing all the damned Irish to go the Hell home, making himself poster child for People Unclear on the Whole Point of Things).
  • Onion rings make everything better. Lee Harvey's has great onion rings (but it's all about the chipotle aioli to go with).
  • I never learn. Why I thought I could eat a fried egg sammich and not end up with yolk-covered boobs is beyond me. They're food magnets. (The end-of-day "When did I eat THAT?!?" moment will never not be disconcerting.) 
  • My crazy friends + an afternoon of beers + the elevator at Reunion Tower = rampant, unapologetic silliness.
 (And the Tower even got into the spirit of the holiday! Don't take pics while driving, kids.)

So there you have it, internetsl—another great day with folks I adore. No arrests, no hangovers, and no regrets (except maybe wearing flip flops in a crowd of 100,000; surely there are better ways to show off my green pedicure).

And unlike the last parade in which I was involved, I didn't find Jell-o shots in my purse the following Monday at work. Not sure if that's a success story or a sad anecdote, actually...

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