I found out today that I am Irish! How did I not know this before - you ask? Well, to many people, they need only look in the mirror, perform a familiar religious/cultural ritual, or ask their family members - and it is apparent "what" they are. However, for pale skinned, Northern Euro looking types like me - whose family of origin engaged in all sorts of trailer trash behaviors - the story is much murkier. I got very weary of searching peoples faces, and looking for similarities. "Those are German people - do I look like them? Do I look like those English people? French?" So, last year, I started a little geneological scavenger hunt.

As a child, growing up, our family "did" German. We went to the Lutheran church. We swore in German. My grandma made potato pancakes. I just assumed we were 100% Kraut. But, it just never felt right. I have a little theory that our cells remember our ancestors. How could they not? Our forebearers are in us on an atomic level. For example, when I chose the music for my wedding - out of all the music in the world - I became completely insistant upon this crazy Celtic pipe music (waaay before Enya et al.). I wept when I heard it. Everybody thought I was nuts. And, I chose the minister who officiated, solely on his Irish accent. In fact, years and years ago, when I heard Celtic pipers for the first time, I got tears in my eyes - my ears were rivited! I must have been all of 9. Plus, and this is weird - each and every New Years Eve - since I was about 21, I have chosen to make a big pot of Corned Beef and Cabbage. Why on EARTH would a person choose to do a thing like that??? I'M JUST SAYING...

So - oddball theories aside - my mom comes from a strange background. Her mother - my grandmother - who was married to a not so nice, alcoholic man - had an affair with this man I will refer to as RH. RH was the town Romeo. He had a girl at every turn - a wife, another woman he lived with, and my grandmother to name but a few. Anyway, my grandmother became pregnant during the time of this affair and delivered twins. A boy and a girl. The boy looked like the rest of her kids - dark haired, brown eyed (he always reminded me of Jerry Lewis). The girl - my mother - was blonde haired and blue eyed like me. Well, my grandmother's husband went ballistic when he saw my mom, and dragged my grandmother into court for a divorce on the grounds of infidelity. The girl twin was not his, he alleged! Without today's DNA testing, it was up to the judge to decide, and he laughed my grandmother's husband right out of court. Why, they're twins! They can't have TWO different fathers! However, this man, RH, and his girlfriend Clara would come to the house every Sunday afternoon, and take MY MOTHER out for ice cream. And, at one point, my mother remembers my grandmother packing up her little duds in a suitcase and GIVING her to RH! He and my mother drove away in his car, but unfortuntely, there was a terrible accident, and RH lost his leg. My mother went back to live with her mother....

I couldn't find any information on RH on the net. So, at one point last year, I left a message on an "H" surname board. Last week, a very nice woman (my cousin??) e-mailed me with news. She knew of this man, as she was the granddaughter of his brother. She knew about Clara (I guess everybody knew). She told me that this man, RH was born in County Cork, Ireland in 1877!!! Ireland! My fascination for years! This is all making sense now.

So, I now know that my mother's father was Irish. Her mother was English and Irish. My father's father was German, and his mother was English. So, instead of being 100% German - it turns out there was only one of the little guys in the family wood pile!


August 27, 2001

Buh Bye!
October 05, 2008

Be Afraid, People.... Really Afraid
September 01, 2008

One Last Bitchfest for the Road
August 24, 2008

Get the Popcorn Ready
July 17, 2008

I'm a Rich Ho-Bag
June 20, 2008

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