Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
Traditionally, March 17 is a celebration of the apostle who converted the Irish to Christianity, and St. Patrick's Day used to be a holy day of obligation for Catholics. Now, instead of going to mass, we day-drink and pinch each other. It makes you wonder what the man who converted the Irish would think of the day created in his honor.
St. Patrick’s Day may still be a religious occasion some places in the world, but in the United States, March 17 has become a day-long a parade of white people barfing up green beer in the street. It comes with a whole lot of less fun side-effects, like violence, alcohol poisoning, DUIs and "Kiss Me, I’m Irish" t-shirts.
But it doesn’t have to be that way.
There's another way to celebrate Saint Patrick—one that will keep you healthy and happy, while the rest of the country dedicates this special day to annoying bartenders and acting out stereotypes—and it’s green! Yes, I’m talking about marijuana.
Here are five reasons why you should put down the bottle this St. Patrick’s Day and pick up the pipe. Or the special green brownie. Whichever.
1 – No Hangover
Perhaps the only thing worse that vomiting Irish car bombs in the gutter on your way home from O’Malley’s is the next morning, when you wake up with bile in your mouth and blurry memories of the day before. Did you really tell the bartender at O’Malley’s that you’d like to “see her shamrock” right before passing out on the bar? You wonder briefly if you’re banned for life or just for the night, before retching and telling yourself you’ll never drink again. And if the day after St. Patrick’s falls on a workday, no one will believe you if you call in sick. And for good reason—March 18 is one of the most commonly skipped workdays of the year, and one study found that St. Patrick’s Day costs the UK over $500 million in lost productivity. Every year.
2 – Goodbye Whiskey Dick
While booze might lower your inhibitions and make it easier to end up in bed with someone—anyone—this St. Patrick's Day (call it Guiness goggles), it’s hard to really enjoy sex when one of you has the spins, and the other is yelling at his limp penis to wake the fuck up. This doesn’t happen on weed. In fact, sex can be better with cannabis, allowing you to relax and get out of your head a little. You can even incorporate marijuana into sex by using weed lube, which reportedly not only feels amazing, but actually gets you high at the same time. Win/win!
3 – You’re Way Less Likely To Die
St. Patrick’s is one of the deadliest days of the year. One study found that drunk driving claimed a life every 51 minutes on St. Patty’s Day 2010, and another found that 80 percent of St. Patrick’s traffic deaths involved drivers who were twice the legal limit for alcohol consumption. And while it’s illegal to drive while high—so don’t do it—studies of stoned drivers show that driving under the influence of cannabis causes only minor impairments. And experienced smokers show almost no impairment on the road. Now, that doesn’t mean you should hit the bong and take a country drive—again, you shouldn’t—but it’s definitely safer than hitting the beer bong before you get behind the wheel. Really don’t do that.
4 – It’s Medicine
The U.S. government began prohibiting marijuana in 1937, but before that, it really was considered medicine. In fact, drug manufacturers like Pfizer and Eli Lily marketed cannabis for everything from menstrual pain to migraines. And that’s because it works. Pot is the best medicine of all, really—a natural painkiller that also has the pleasant side effect of getting you stoned. Now, booze will also make your pain go away, but only until you wake up deep in a shame spiral the morning after.
5 – Booze Makes You An Asshole
Something about alcohol makes our inner boneheads emerge. St. Patrick’s Day binge drinking is associated with increased assaults, domestic violence and bad Irish accents. Weed, on the other hand, is affiliated with increased sense of well-being, concentration, relaxation and pizza delivery. Weed may be a gateway to sweatpants and Doritos, but it’s not likely to make you go out and start punching strangers. Unlike booze.
Maybe it’s time to start a new tradition this March 17. Instead of getting shitfaced on whiskey and cutting off the tip off your thumb while you try to carve the corned beef, just sit back, relax and smoke some weed instead. It’ll be good for you. Really, it’ll be good for all of us.
(Cover Image Courtesy of MarijuanaMath.com)