As on any other typical Friday night in Boston, I went to an Irish Wake in which a coffin lay in the living room containing a Justin Bieber blowup doll dressed like James Joyce. Complete with a copy of the Joyce death mask, of course. I unfortunately arrived after the dramatic enactment of the first few pages of Finnegan’s Wake, but I did arrive in time to hear my professor singing at the top of his lungs. A table in the dining room was covered in half empty wine bottles and the kitchen stove was heating some purportedly famous whiskey punch, which I was sure to sample. A three person band containing a bodhran, an accordion, and a fiddle were playing in the living room where the coffin was laid out, candles lighting the head of the deceased and slightly deflated.
I’ve been going to a Finnegan’s Wake reading group for the past few months, as I have been reading Ulysses in one of my seminars and just couldn’t get enough Joyce. Finnegan’s Wake, for those of you who have not been so (un)fortunate as to encounter it, is a very long book that is entirely about a dream. It reads like a dream too, with words and phrases very jumbled and sketchy. Some consider it a work of absolute genius, other’s decry it as bosh. I am of the opinion that it takes a man of great genius to create bosh like that. I am not going to say I recommend it, but if you have the opportunity to pick it up and see what I mean, it is certainly an experience.
This party was thrown by the teacher who runs the reading group and has become famous as an annual event that brings together students, grad students, teachers, and random people no one is quite sure they know. There was wine and whiskey a plenty, flasks full of Jameson, and Guinness filling the fridge. We sang and laughed and giggled over the body of the dear departed Joyce/Bieber combo until it was time to go and grab a final drink at The Last Drop, the only bar in the area open past one. Silly Puritan drinking laws. Of course there we ran into two men in kilts carrying bagpipes and after a bit of pleading got them to play while we drank our last pints.
And thus began my first St. Patrick’s Day weekend in Boston.
To see what mischief I am able to get up to during the rest of the weekend, tune in on Monday 🙂 And Happy St. Patrick’s Day to you all.
By the way the dress I am wearing, which I am rather fond of, is a Kensie dress from their Fall 2013 collection. Check out their new stuff because some of their Spring dresses are just… perfection.