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Guest Column

The Luck of the Irish
By John J. Walsh
Jan 17, 2014 - 7:20:02 AM

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There be an old Irish saying that goes: "If you're enough lucky to be Irish you're lucky enough!" so I'm a little puzzled by the Big Ben's (BenDedek) constant references to 'Murphy's Law' as though the Irish are at fault for all the bad luck in the world.

We're a pretty self effacing lot for sure, but in these politically correct days, those of ye who have not been blessed enough to be Irish had better take a care lest ye find yeselves on the wrong end of not only a few choice Irish curses, but of law suits and end up in court for ye racism and discrimination.

Now it might be funny te those of ye not blessed enough to be Irish to be runnin round sayin 'te be sure to be sure' as though this be what we Ayreish spruik at the end of every sentence, but if ye not be takin care, we 'blessed ones' might all have ye up for racial slurring.

I mean te say if all these new fangled politically correct laws give us the right to nick a few quid from yer wallets, well.... why not? After all, yer not one of us now are ye?

I may have lived in Australia and may be a citizen of the U.S. of A. but I am still in me heart, a son of Ireland and while I appreciate all the opportunities that this fine country has given me, I remain at the end of the day, not a 'real American' if ye know what I mean. And if ye be silly enough to give me some power, and some excuse to use that power to wield the weight of blind justice over ye to get some gain for meself, then I'd be a fool now not to do it.

There was a time when we had fun takin the micky out of each other and what a lark it was but where is that fun today? All locked up in prisons created by those who never knew joy, or who are too bloody weak (like Scots Whiskey) to cope with the rigors of life.

When I was a kid we used to say 'Sticks and stones may break my bones, but names will never hurt me!' Now today we've grown so bloody spineless, lacking all necessary mind and will to get through life, that we break down in tears whenever someone says something we don't like.

Me Ma was the prettiest lassie ye ever did see when she was young (I've seen the pictures), but by the time I was a teenager, she was built like the longside of a barn, and I remember when a neighborhood woman said to her, 'It must be difficult being as fat as you are!'. Well, me Ma just smiled at the scrawny little rake and ever so sweetly said: 'Oh I don't know! I'd rather be fat and jolly than be a skinny little bitch!'

Well didn't that little lady take off like she'd heard the banshee's call. Me Ma looked at me and said: 'Remember little Jack, if ye ever need to call someone a Bitch, always do it with a smile. It doesn't pay to be nasty!'

When it comes to Murphy's Law and luck Mr. Ben, Good Luck and Bad Luck comes to all, and sure doesn't the Holy Writ says something of the kind when it says the grace of God falls on the just and the unjust alike. But the thing about luck is this; it's not how lucky or unlucky ye are that counts, but how straight is yer back, how high is yer head, and how pure is yer heart, as ye deal with the change in ye circumstances.

A good heart, strong back and fortitudinous trust in the Almighty will get ye through anything, but if the only way to deal with the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune is to be runnin to the magistrates or the head doctors, then yer not really livin now are ye? And is that what we want to be teachin little kiddies is it now? Maybe we could change that old sayin te: 'Sticks and stone may break my bones but name calling just breaks my heart and reduces me to tears and gives me post traumatic stress disorder.' Gosh and Begorrah that is what it amounts to isn't it?

So go ahead Mr. Ben and blame the Irish for all the bad luck ye have, I don't mind at all. I understand that not being one of the 'blessed lucky ones' that ye don't know how to cope with life and all it's twists and turns, and so ye blame everyone else but yeself.

Ye no doubt be just one of those namby pamby post modern effete metrosexual chaps, more into lookin and soundin like some educated professor than gettin off ye high horse and getting down in the mud on the ground to know what life is like for the ordinary man.

When life doesn't go like ye'd like Mr. Ben, just remember another great Irish saying, which goes like this: 'Shite happens!'

We Irish believe that there are three things best to have in plenty - sunshine, wisdom and generosity. Notice that 'luck' didn't get a mention there. And we never resent growing old for we know that many are denied the privilege. It's the grace of God that blesses yer life Mr. Ben - not luck!

So when that dreaded Murphy's Law of yours next strikes, Get down on your knees and thank God you're still on your feet.

J.J. Walsh.

John J. Walsh, a Catholic, is originally from Ireland; went to high school and university in Australia, and later moved to the U.S.A. Fearing the hot blooded protestants and not wanting to reach heaven or hell faster than is God's plan, his personal email address and other particulars are not available for publication. You may however Email him at: johnjwalsh_magic

Editor R.P. BenDedek's Comment:

  • I think you've misunderstood something Little Jack, the Murphy I often refer to is the English Murphy! To be sure to be sure!

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