I know… seeing an Italian greeting on an Irish post is just weird, right? Couldn’t help myself. That’s how I always greet my friends.
Today, I should have said: Dia dhaoibh ar maidin. (It’s pronounced like this: JEE-uh DEE-iv air MA-jin and means “good morning.”)
Heck with it. Here’s a greeting that works for any of us:
Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
I know I focus a lot on my Italian heritage, but I’m also part Irish. A fact I should celebrate more and never fail to celebrate on March 17.
Because of that, a few years ago, I decided to write a series of vignettes honoring (some of) my dad’s roots. I ended up with twelve, one for each month. That series was edited into Laci and Del: 12 Months, 12 Chances.
Here’s an excerpt from the March vignette:
On Monday evening, Laci’s doorbell rang at 5:30, right when she expected it. She straightened her green silk dress under her apron and answered the door.
He must have had a hard day, because he’d already taken off his jacket, untucked his shirt, loosened his collar, and undone his tie. His hair was mussed, like he’d been running his hand through it in frustration, and he was looking at his phone with a frown on his face. But when she greeted him, he pocketed his phone and the stress lines smoothed into a lazy grin. “You look gorgeous. What’s the occasion?”
She grabbed his hand and pulled him into her apartment. She looked gorgeous? One of her favorite looks on Del was his done-with-the-business-day look. His five o’clock shadow was coming in and his clothes were starting to come off… he had that perfect blend of elegant and casual that really got to her. “Are you kidding me? Delany Keegan doesn’t know what today is?”
He thought for a second and shook his head. “Sorry, babe. The last week’s been pretty rough. Today was a real killer. Let me think… It’s not a birthday. Not an anniversary. What am I missing?”
She reached behind her and slowly untied her apron, watching his every reaction.
His gaze followed her hands. He swallowed and smiled, clearly expecting a lot more to come.
Instead of removing her apron, she lifted it to him and said, “Read it.”
“What?” He chuckled, clearly not expecting that turn of events.
“What’s it say?”
He looked at her for a moment, then he looked down at the apron and read it. “Kiss Me. I May Have a Wee Bit O’ Irish in Me.” He smiled. “It’s St. Patrick’s Day.”
She spoke with her best brogue, which wasn’t that good, but was serviceable. “It is indeed, Delany Keegan. And you should be ashamed for neglecting your heritage like that. Forgetting our day. And not even wearing o’ the green! You know what that means!” She reached out and pinched him.
He tossed his jacket on the sofa and spoke in a brogue far better than Laci’s. “You get one free one, Laci Marks. Try it again, and I pinch back.”
If you’d like to read the original March vignette (as it was before slight revision and inclusion in the book), you can read it here. And if you’d like to read the whole story, you can download it for free here.
Laci and Del: 12 Months, 12 Chances is a fast, easy, light read. It’s novella-length, but it’s not a novella. It’s a series of 12 vignettes (plus a bonus) designed to show how these characters moved on from a misunderstanding and bad break up.
I wrote this because I’d already paid homage to my mother’s side of the family with a series centered on Italian characters. I thought my dad deserved some love, too.
Once again, Happy St. Patrick’s Day, everybody. Slán go fóill!