Any color as long as it’s green.

by awindram

In an obnoxious tradition (not rooted in Ireland), Americans feel entitled to “playfully” pinch you if you’re not wearing green on St. Patrick’s Day; yet punching them back and deriding them for cultural appropriation is somehow not considered “playful”. American social rules are difficult for a foreigner to navigate at times.

Not that St Patrick’s Day in the US has anything to do with Ireland. No, this is a holiday run purely for the benefits of an avaricious if imaginative food coloring industry. In the early 60s finding themselves with an excess of unwanted FD&C Green No.3 and Fast Green FCF, the decision was taken to illegally dump these chemicals into the Chicago River. Fortuitously they happened to do this on the weekend of St Patrick’s Day. Never the sharpest, the people of Chicago assumed this was deliberate and celebrated accordingly. Spotting a market for their green dyes, the food coloring industry have since then been convincing various brands that in order to fully embrace the Irish spirit they need to make full use of green coloring – despite the only thing green you’ll eat in Ireland being mushy peas. How else to explain the likes of these?

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The Shamrock Shake is McDonalds’s misplaced and diabetic-inducing effort to US-Irish relations. It was popularized in the 1970s by McDonalds character / marketing brain fart, Uncle O’Grimacey. Pathetically, 85% of Americans believe Uncle O’Grimacey is what people in Ireland actually look like.

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