Thursday, April 23, 2009
St George the obscure
The French have got Bastille Day, the Americans Independence Day, the Irish St Patrick’s Day, the Scotch have got Burns’ Night and the Canadians have got Canada Day. Even the New Zealanders and Australians get the Queen’s Birthday off as a national holiday.
You’d be forgiven for thinking that the English do not have a special day to call their own. But they do, it’s called St George’s Day, and that day, readers, is TODAY!
Happy St George’s Day everyone!
Today I went to the pub and had a pint of warm beer and some fish ‘n’ chips for lunch with my good friend Dave, the roofer. We played darts and then did some Morris Dancing..! ;-) lol
Dave had been to the barbers first thing and was sporting a number one all over, he was also wearing his favourite St George’s Flag t-shirt, and poking just out beneath the sleeve were visible the words of his inky blue/green tattoo “No Surrender”.
It would be fair to say that Dave is a patriot and he was making a special point of wishing everyone in the pub a very vocal happy St George’s day. I think it would also be fair to say that most people didn’t know what he was talking about and not just because he was pissed out of his brain.
London is one of, if not the, most multicultural cities in the world. Yet, it wasn’t because the pub was full of foreigners that no one understood what Dave was talking about, because it wasn’t, it was full of lonely old Englishmen with nothing better to do than sit around in a grimy boozer all day moaning about how you can’t smoke indoors anymore and the fact that beer and fags have just gone up in price to pay for the recent influx of immigrants.
Most people didn’t know it was St George’s Day, because most of the people in England have never known that April 23rd is St George’s Day. Unless you were in the boy scouts as a boy, it was never an issue. I was in the cubs for a while, but I didn’t agree with the militaristic lifestyle. Even as a young boy in Lincoln I was a pacifist.
I have a theory as to why the English do not have a ‘special’ day. The people of England feel that they do not need a special day. Special days, such as those named above, are usually set up by peoples of nations that feel they have something to prove or that they are somehow undervalued.
This reminds me of a time that I told my dear Mum that I thought it was unfair that there was a Mothering Sunday and not a Sonday Sunday and she told me that every day was a Barry day. In a way, every day is an English day. Well, it used to be at least, when we had an empire. These days the country is on its knees, which could be part of the reason that we’re seeing a surge in patriotism and a desire to make St George’s Day a national holiday.
St George is also the national saint of Catalonia.