Pinching on St. Patrick’s Day is a tradition best left on the playground

Mar 17, 2016, 1:44 PM | Updated: 1:49 pm
A spectator arrives to watch the St Patrick's Day parade on the streets of Dublin  Thursday March 1...

A spectator arrives to watch the St Patrick's Day parade on the streets of Dublin Thursday March 17, 2016. (Niall Carson/PA via AP)

(Niall Carson/PA via AP)

Happy St. Patrick’s Day — a day when everyone and their dog is Irish!

As I was waking my kids up Thursday morning, my son said, “Dad, I have to wear green today. I don’t want to get pinched!”

Of course, pinching is the punishment for those not wearing green on St. Patrick’s Day. I smiled, realizing that this tradition has stood the test of time.

Then I started to wonder how much trouble someone at work could get into for handing down this punishment at the office.

I half-jokingly asked KTAR and Arizona Sports legal analyst Monica Lindstrom and she threw out the “A word” — assault!

Yes, even though this is a time-honored tradition, it can come with a price tag of a Class 3 to a Class 1 misdemeanor that can land you in the clink up to six months and cut $2,500 out of your green beer budget!

Assault is defined legally as “knowingly touching another person with the intent to injure, insult or provoke such person.”

Oh, I can hear you rolling your eyes, but think about it. In the litigious world we live in, Sally from accounting just might be looking for an excuse to call the billboard attorney that she’s sees driving to work every day!

Pinching also brings up harassment claims. What if ol’ Sally has been growing tired of your holiday games and the pinch is just what she needed to be sent over the edge?

None of us want to spend the afternoon getting written up by human resources when we should be knee deep in a plate of corned beef and hash!

The bottom line is that it is best to just keep your hands to yourself at the office.

Oh, and Sally from accounting: If you get pinched, just have a green beer and let it slide. St. Patrick would want it that way.

Michael Russell

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Pinching on St. Patrick’s Day is a tradition best left on the playground