No matter how well you try to prepare for Hoboken St. Patrick's Day, you're always amazed by the turnout. Of course, everyone thinks it's a riot that Hoboken has just gone and made up its own holiday, whereas it's actually out of necessity that the Mile Square City has designated the first Saturday of March as its St. Patrick's Day celebration. In an effort to attract the best bands and the biggest crowd, forward-thinking Hobokenites decided not to compete with NYC's parade (honestly, if they were both at the same time, the Hoboken parade would be nothing but Mayor Roberts riding down the street in a green VW Beetle with the top down and a couple of drunks too wasted to find the PATH train).
Hoboken St. Patrick's Day marks the beginning of the St. Patrick's Day season, if you will. The next day has the Belmar St. Patrick's Day Parade, and the following week has Jersey City and West Orange taking part in the celebration, all leading up to the big day on March 17.
That's all well and good, but what I don't understand is why people put themselves through the wringer on a day like that. First of all, I never wait in line for a bar - particularly one on this side of the Hudson - yet I saw throngs of disgruntled drunks waiting for hours in lines all over town. In fact, First Street was basically one big line for a bar, from the Quiet Woman (557 First St.) to McSwiggans (110 First St.). Mario's Park Avenue Tavern even had a line outside. You stand in these lines forever waiting for the Darwinism of Drunkenness to take effect as the weak start dying off.
Then after that long, humiliating wait OUTSIDE the bar (I say humiliating because there's always that drunk nutbag who pokes his head out the door and taunts the people in line. You think to yourself how badly you're gonna smack the crap out of him once you get in there, but you realize that by doing that you'll get thrown out of the bar and you'll have to go wait in another line), you get wait INSIDE with people of varying degrees of drunkenness and belligerence while jostling for the attention of bartenders who are too battle weary to even fake a smile.
Then some whiny bitch from Ridgewood spills her drink on you with no apology, some candy ass from Connecticut pukes in the bathroom and some meathead from Nutley smashes a bottle on the floor. After you wait again in another line for the bathroom you start to wonder, "Gee, is it really worth it?"
Yeah, yeah - I'm a big cranky curmudgeon who's bitter about the fact that he has to work (I may be bitter, but I paid my entire month's rent in that one Saturday's work), but I really couldn't see why I would put myself through all that. But I'm also the guy who stays home on New Year's Eve to avoid all this.
If you know how I can effectively waste $50 in the Metro-area, please write to:
"Hal Wastes His Wages"
c/o The Hudson Current
1400 Washington Street
Hoboken, New Jersey 07030
or email email@example.com