The MAtH (man about the house) and I are seeing green in Dianne Isbell's Monday Etiquette column in the Belleville News-Democrat today.
Me: Do you think Dianne is Irish?
MAtH: I've never thought about it at all. Why?
Me: She is giving someone advice on Irish Blessings today.
MAtH: "As you slide down the banisters of life, may the splinters never point the wrong way."
MAtH: That's an Irish blessing I learned when we played on the stairs in grade school.
Me: And you remember it?
MAtH: Sure, I didn't realize it was Irish til later.
Me: Well, here's the question to Dianne: "My husband and I are going to his friend's birthday party that is on St. Patrick's Day. It is a milestone birthday and my husband has been asked to "say a few words." He has a couple of stories to tell from their high school days, but he wants to end with something serious. Could you give us a couple of appropriate (Irish verses) or words?"
MAtH: And Dianne said?
Me: Here's where it gets confusing, her suggestions don't sound very Irish to me.
MAtH: You being more than a little Irish.
Me: Yes, and you realize I stopped apologizing years ago for diluting your unaltered German family line.
MAtH: You can never apologize enough.
Me: Anyway, here's what she told this person: "The test of Gold is Fire. The test of Truth is Time. The test of God's love are the heavens above, and everything sublime. Treasures in life are many, dreams realized but few, but I know the test of God's goodness, is when he gave me a friend like you."
MAtH: That sounds more like a Hallmark card.
Me: I thought so too. She added this: "My the luck of the Irish (continue to) posses you. May the devil (continue to) fly off with your worries. My God (continue to) bless you forever and ever."
MAtH: Why are the continue to's in parantheses? And why does she use the word My instead of May?
Me: I have no idea. But she then wrote: "Plus: "Happy Birthday my dear friend."
MAtH: Does she think adding the words "my dear friend" makes it sound more Irish?
Me: I guess, but I don't believe many men would end remarks like that.
MAtH: I bet there are lots of Irish blessings.
Me: I guess you'd need the internet to look them up.
Me: "May you have the hindsight to know where you've been, the foresight to know where you're going and the insight to know when you're going too far."
MAtH: "May you live to be a hundred years, with one extra year to repent."
Me: "May the saddest day of your future be no worst than the happiest day of your past."
MAtH: "May the blessings of each day be the blessings you need the most."
Me: Anyway, the Irish love their blessings and toasts.
MAtH: I wonder if Germans have old blessings.
MAtH: Why are you laughing?
Me: "Our family is a circle of love and strength. With every birth and every union, the
circle grows. Every joy shared adds more love. Every crisis faced together makes the
MAtH: What's wrong with that?
Me: Germans, still freaking us out.
MAtH: So, do you think Dianne might have any Irish in her?
Me: Does she freak you out sometimes?
MAtH: Oh, yeah.