Re: United Irish Cultural Center

10/12/18 - posted by jb

Sad news indeed, Frank, though not surprising in this day and age where many of the ethnic, social and cultural institutions once enjoyed and honored are falling by the wayside. What I wonder is what is replacing them?

Perhaps social media is the new “club” “society or “ancient order” that bonds folks of like minds or cultures together with a free, 24/7 availability, but to what end? To me, “friends” are those who will help you move, take you to the airport and still laugh at your worn-out jokes while resisting the urge to correct your spelling and grammar. “Friends” in today’s social media milieu are seemingly mere clicks attached to a cat photo.

Given the deficit reporting of the UICC, clearly economics has claimed the lives of many in the old established order of brick and mortar hospitality portals: Regretfully, this signifies their lack of perceived value today. But can one put a price on a friend’s warm smile, an embracing hug or handshake, a shared libation over a death or wedding? Is LOL any substitute for the sweet and heart-felt intonations in an accent from the “old country?”

From childhood, I would delight in sitting at the Aquatic Park bocce ball courts just to experience these Italian gents laugh, argue and interact in a language I could not comprehend. What I understood, over time, was their expression of friendship, passion and joy, something very difficult to capture in a selfie or tweet. Now if my cat could only speak Italian...

The Western Neighborhoods Project is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit.