One of life’s mysteries of being an Expat in America, is the fervant celebration of St. Patrick’s Day!  On March 17th every year, anyone who has ever been within 500 yards of a pint glass with a Guinness logo on it – anoints themselves with Irish heritage – and jumps feet first into celebrating their Patron Saint Day.

Even though . . .  they probably couldn’t pinpoint Ireland on the map, and have no idea who Patrick was!  Consumerism at it’s best.

Retailers are expecting consumers to spend about $4.1 Billion to celebrate their favourite saints day this year.  Money squandered on green attire, Irish themed decorations and party favours, food, and of course the obligatory alcohol.

This year, competition to grab consumers dollars is fierce.  Not because of the economic downturn, or people donating part of their earnings to aid Japan, but because somebody moved Easter – and there’s nothing else to celebrate in March.

I took the day off work today, and avoided the sea of green attire, dodged the shamrock decorations, and didn’t have to wish everyone in a green shirt – “Happy St. Paddy’s Day”. 

Even with a day off, I couldn’t dodge the Paddy’s Day reminders.  I popped into McDonald’s for a cup of coffee – and was greeted by their advert for a Shamrock “McSlurry” Shake! 

I’m not anti Irish or anti fun — I’m just saving my money – and red shirt – for April 23rd.  My Saint fights Dragon’s not Snakes!


Thanks to Retail Sails for some of the money spending metrics.