Saturday, November 12, 2005
Well, that was uncomfortable...
While I may seem confident and outgoing to you, dear reader(s), I'm actually full of fears and uncertainties, usually concerning the smallest and silliest things.
Last night, we went out to celebrate a friend's birthday. It was a fun night; I met lots of new lovely people and surprised myself with my resistance to alcohol, even after more than a year without so much as a shandy. Anyway, said friend, specifically requested that I wear a comedic Guinness/drinking shirt I'd received for my birthday this year. And that's when the worry set in. Because the shirt has the name and address of the pub it was bought at emblazoned in big yellow letters (on black, of course) on the back. Meg told me again and again that I was being silly, and that no one would mind me walking into a bar with the name of another bar on my back, and she may have been right, but I worried nonetheless.
We later moved on to a real down-to-earth Irish bar, in which a little angry expat stood up on stage and started reciting a furious poem about the Easter Uprising of 1916. So I'm standing in a bar, wearing a shirt from another bar, squirming while a wizened gentleman on stage calls me a "tyrant" and an "oppressor". I know he's not talking specifically about me, no one there knows I'm English, and I think some of his complaints are legitimate, so I know I have no real reason to be uncomfortable, but I still am, because of all those little fears and uncertainties.
Musicians take the stage, and strike up some exciting fast-paced guitar music, and the room is getting hotter and stuffier all the time as people are wailing and spinning as they only ever seem to do in Irish pubs.
It's at this point, as the two fellows on stage are singing about spilling the blood of the English and how wonderful the IRA are, that I consider taking off my shirt, because it's just very hot in there.
It's okay; I have a t-shirt on underneath, something I just grabbed out of the cupboard, just a plain white t-shirt.
Except it's not plain. It's the England shirt my Mum sent me last Christmas. With the St George's cross across the chest and "England" in big red letters.