The merits of an Irish goodbye

The merits of an Irish goodbye
Maureen O'Hara & John Wayne in "The Quiet Man"

Since some Irish may exude a loquacious gift of gab, it seems counter intuitive an Irish goodbye is a ghost exit, but Irish people are rich in paradoxes. Some Irish people are notoriously aloof without blatant emotion, they may prefer a discreet departure. The classic love story of the Irish born boxer from Pittsburgh Sean Thornton, played by John Wayne, and Mary Kate Danaher, played by Maureen O'Hara, conjures the image of just who may opt for an Irish goodbye.

John Wayne's character would not end an evening with potential awkwardness. Although a fight may erupt, that seems better than sentimental tears. An Irish goodbye is understated and cool. The Urban Dictionary defines the Irish goodbye as “leaving quietly out the side door of a party or bar without saying goodbye to anyone”.

Fun fact, a French goodbye also avoids anything long or dramatic and may evoke mystery. The urban dictionary states, "To leave a party or a large gathering without saying goodbye to anyone... Cinderella made a French exit from the ball."

A charming guest may still thank their host without interrupting the moment to pivot the attention onto them. A traditional note with snail mail allows a token of gratitude.

How do you bid farewell? Recently, we embraced the Irish goodbye. My husband and I had a blast with school friends at our Emerald Auction and Mardi Gras Ball. We said a low-key "good night" to those nearby and slipped out. I texted our babysitter to let her know our estimated time of arrival. The next day, friends and I spoke on the phone about the good time we shared.

What's your preferred "Good bye?" When appropriate, "Love you" with hugs and kisses warms your heart more than Rhett Butler's callous retort to his Irish American love, Scarlett O'Hara, "Frankly my dear, I don't give a damn!" XOXO

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