st. patrick's day run

I was sixteen.
We were young, dumb, and always drunk.
Some would say I was in love

I was sixteen.
My life was happy
And in your arms I could easily fall asleep.

I was sixteen.
With a happy mother.
When I called her you would flirt with me.

I was sixteen.
Stars in my eyes and whiskey in veins.
All of the world could see you were my everything.

I was sixteen.
After years of pretending and empty smiles
I finally found someone who truly believed in me.

I was sixteen
When you told me that I deserved to be free
So my heart grew wings and began to soar.

Now I’m twenty one.
Always stressed and depressed
In a constant state of grief and disbelief.

I’m twenty one
Getting drunk
Saying I need to run from memories.

I’m twenty one
You ask me why I’m crying
With a shot of tequila in each hand

I’m twenty one
When my world implodes
And honesty finally leaks through

I’m twenty one
With plenty to run from
But I’m not running away

I’m twenty one
Swaying in the wind
With me, you, and memories

I’m twenty one
When you hear the truth.

I only drink to chase sixteen.

—  Sixteen

Happy St. Patrick’s Day (with David Tennant)

St. Patrick’s Day in Prison

Last week, the crew running the Fort Greene housing projects across the street from me asked if I knew a guy named Paddy Irish.

Of course I did; he’s a jailhouse celebrity. Paddy was born into the Westies, an Irish-American gang from Manhattan’s Hell Kitchen, a neighborhood real estate agents have almost succeeded in renaming “Clinton.” He went to prison as a kid with a murder conviction, the standard 25 years to life.

By the time I met him in 2004 he had 20 in and lights out—which is to say he was never going to be released. Living up to the Westie reputation for violence, he had killed three additional people over the two decades he’d spent inside. The jail bodies, as they’re called, upped his bid to 100 to life. He would have to live a long, long time to see a parole board. Paddy wasn’t counting on it. Besides, he smoked. Accepting his fate stoically, he enjoyed the boons of his notoriety and treated me well.

I spent three Saint Patrick’s Days with him.


It was our honor to show SONG OF THE SEA…our run ended a bit early for St. Patrick’s Day, but still. The film is chock full of Irish mythology with a twist, starting with the names. For instance, Cú means “dog” in Irish, and Saoirse is “little seal.” Which is appropriate as she and her mother are Selkies, legendary magical creatures who are human on land and seals in the water. It’s just stunning