Lucky Charms Leprechaun: 'I'm Not Irish'

My Adopted Ghost -- a "ghost adoption service" that launched last month -- is letting mere mortals share their homes and lives with supernatural spirits. You just fill out an adoption application to see if you're a suitable ghost dad or mom, and your home may soon be happily haunted.

An adopted spook is the perfect companion for your pet rock, especially if your pet rock is the malicious sort that keeps manipulating you into blowing money on more novelty items.

In honor of St. Patrick's Day, the company is offering a series of Irish spirits, such as the Ghost of Liam Bryan, to its list of "pending adoptions." Mr. Bryan is said to have lived in Dublin and died after jumping off a train bound for Shannon. The details of his life and death are told in his biography, which you get as part of the Ghost Adoption Kit. Prices start at $24.

Of course, not everyone is a suitable ghost parent, especially if you've got a lot of pets and very little free time. Ghosts are inherently jealous, the company's Web site warns. But my guess is that if you pay $24, it's yours. And you can start living your own Irish ghost story.

2. Another Saint, Another Reason to Drink
If you can't raise a toast with the Irish on March 17, maybe you can revel a day earlier with Finnish-Americans who dress in purple and head to pubs to celebrate St. Urho's Day.

The March 16 celebration began nearly 50 years ago in Virginia, Minn., when department store manager Richard Mattson rued the fact that Finnish folks didn't have their own St. Patrick's Day -- so he started his own.

Mattson convinced his employer to throw an office party to honor Finland's Saint Urho Kekkonen, who supposedly rid his homeland's vineyards of locusts.

It turned out to be a great party. Co-workers gathered around and drank heartily as Mattson recounted how the saintly man stood on a rock shouting, "Heinasirkka, heinasirkka, menetaalta hiiteen," which is Finnish for "Grasshopper, grasshopper, go away!"

There was only one problem: St. Urho never existed.

But is that really a reason to stop partying? The ersatz holiday is still celebrated in Minnesota towns like Menahga and Finland, where you'll find statues honoring the fictitious saint.

You can even head over to Butte, Mont., for the St. Urho's Day Parade, where participants are encouraged to pelt each other with grapes. The event is highlighted by the "Changing of the Guards" ceremony in which St. Urho Knights mark the end of winter by removing their green and purple long underwear.

Let's just hope no marriages are ruined and no one is arrested.

3. Space Leprechaun on the Loose
Just because you see some little green men on St. Patrick's Day doesn't mean they're all leprechauns. Two years ago, UFO researcher Donald Johnson of New Hampshire explained that studies of UFO sightings spike on 42-day cycles that have coincided with the Irish holiday in recent years.

Even if you don't believe in the UFO phenomenon, you must admit that it'd be fiendishly clever for space aliens to pass themselves off as St. Patrick's Day partygoers. It would explain their green skin and strange ways. What about the antennae sprouting from their foreheads? After enough beers, doesn't everyone seem to have antennae?

Of course, attendance at certain St. Patrick's Day parties might lead anyone from any galaxy to report back to the mother ship: "No sign of intelligent life."

Buck Wolf is entertainment producer at "The Wolf Files" is published Tuesdays.

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