Buffalo, New York—While parades have been cancelled in Boston, Chicago, Cleveland and Dublin, due to fears arising from Coronavirus, the quintessential St. Patrick’s Day celebration, the Old Neighborhood Parade in Buffalo’s, First Ward, remains on track for this Saturday at noon. The parade, which starts at the Valley Community Center and ends on South Street, features people dressed in green drinking on the side of the road, watching other people dressed in green drinking on non-decorated parade floats with port-a-potties. As a result of these public safety concerns parade organizers and Irish revelers believe it might be a good idea to self-quarantine along the parade route.
Parade organizers have been making contingency plans all week to insure there will be plenty of Guinness, Jameson, Corn Beef/Cabbage and Marlboro Reds on hand should people need to self-quarantine in place. Volunteer paramedics are also being sought to administer first-aid for the many fist-fights likely to occur among revelers binging for multiple days or possibly weeks.
Dr. Declan Macmanus, an Irish infectious disease control specialist said with warmer temperatures expected this weekend transmission and incubation periods for the virus are accelerated. Dr. Macmanus suggested revelers not stand so close to each other, cough into their elbows and to outfit themselves with puke bags, baby wipes and some goddamn breath mints. These precautions will help people stay safe and have a good time.
With extended use of Guinness and Jamesons parade organizers are making inquiries about additional first responders as well, since at some point, a wiry looking leprechaun dude named Sean is going to give the eye to an Irish beauty from Abbott Road named Margaret and it’s going to piss off her boyfriend, Patrick, who works at Buffalo Fire. Patrick is going to sucker punch Sean and maybe cut his eye which will require first aid. After the paramedic cleans up Sean, Patrick will apologize and they’ll become friends and do shots of Jamesons and sing Danny Boy. Margaret will look at this scene with regret and a certain amount of hopelessness and wish she was a lesbian.
Community reaction to the possibility of self-quarantining has been generally positive. Here’s what some revelers are saying:
Liam Sullivan: “I’m for it. Being stuck at the Old Neighborhood Parade for days or weeks. It’ll be like the Blizzard of ‘77 for Irish people. Erin Go Party!!!”
Hanna Wroblewski: “I’m hoping this extends to Dyngus Day. That’ll be like a month of drinking. I hope I can transition from Guinness to Zywiec.”
Conor O’Malley: “I can’t wait to call my boss, who is this middle-management asshole, and tell him I’m self-quantining and to send my check with sick pay to Gene McCarthy’s on Hamburg Street.”
Donna Kane: “What are you talking about, this isn’t a parade. This is people in green drinking watching other people in green drinking. It’s totally ridiculous. And those floats aren’t floats. They’re trucks with port-a-potties on the back, which is even more ridiculous. I’m staying home, thank you very much.”
Parade organizers are open to community input and are receiving email suggestions at: firstname.lastname@example.org.