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For good luck in the coming year, Irish children who are celebrating their birthdays are traditionally raised into the air upside down, and their heads are bumped gently against the floor, one bump for every year of their age, plan an extra bump to grow on.

Selkies

These gentle fairy creatures can remove their seal skins, thereby taking on mortal forms of stunningly beautiful men or women with dark eyes and hair, until they put their skins back on, transforming back into seals as they return to the sea. Like merrows, selkies sometimes have webbed fingers or toes. They are compelled to obey anyone who captures their shed seal skins, and because of their beauty, many people have become romantically entangled with selkies. Unfortunately, these romantic stories usually end in tragedy, as a selkies can only dally with a human for a short time before returning to the sea. While in their mortal forms, selkies frequent sea cliffs and sing melancholy songs. The movie The Secret of Roan Inish is a tale of a selkie.

Irish Drink Irish Mist

First produced in Tullamore in 1947, Irish Mist is a complex, golden liquor made from aged Irish whiskey, heather and clover honey, aromatic herbs and spices and other spirits, supposedly derived from an ancient recipe for heather wine more than a thousand years old. Since 1985, it has been manufactured in Dublin by the Cantrell & Cochrane Group. Mist is available in more than 40 countries, and is sometimes preferred mixed with colas.

Born in Dalkey, the novelist Maeve Binchy focuses on themes such as the disparity between rural and urban living, the societal changes in Ireland after World War II and the contrasts between Ireland and England. In 1995, her novel Circle of Friends was adapted into a Hollywood movie starring Chris O’Donnell and Minnie Driver.

Alex Levine Quotation

Only Irish coffee provides in a single glass all four essential food groups: alcohol, caffeine, sugar and fat.  Alex Levine

Irish-American Celebrity

Pierce Brosnan (May 16, 1953 — ) The handsome television and film actor holds both Irish and American citizenship. After first rising to popularity in the TV show Remington Steele, Brosnan moved to movies and has starred in crowd-pleasers Dante’s Peak, The Thomas Crown Affair and Mamma Mia! He also starred as secret agent James Bond in four films from 1995 to 2002.

Born in Wexford, Eoin (pronounced “Owen”) Colfer gained fame as the creator of the Artemis Fowl series of children’s books. Colfer was also given permission to write his sixth book in the late Douglas Adam’s Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series, entitled And Another Thing…, which was published in October 2009.

The political satirist, writer, actor and television host Stephen Colbert gained attention on the television sitcom Strangers with Candy, during which he was also working as a correspondent on the news parody program The Daily Show. After winning three Emmys as a writer on The Daily Show, Colbert gained his own spin-off, The Colbert Report, in which he hosts as a caricature of a conservative political pundit. He now hosts the late-night show, The Late Show on the CBS network.

Irish Food – Irish Stew

Originally a thick and hearty peasant dish created with readily available and inexpensive local ingredients such as lamb (or beef), potatoes, onions, turnips, parsnips, carrots and parsley, Irish stew is so popular and nostalgic that recent recipes have been exalted to near-gourmet status. Called ballymaloe or stobhach gaelach in Gaelic, Irish stew is sometimes favored with Guinness stout.

The dashing actor Tyrone Powell often starred in romantic or swashbuckling movies, including The Mark of Zorro, The Black Swan, and Blood and Sand. He was known for his stage work, too, particularly in the play “Mister Roberts. At the age of 44, Power had a heart attack and died while filming a dueling scene for Solomon and Sheba.

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