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Rarely successful, Leprechaun traps are a study in persistence

By Ezra Powers

I had never heard of a Leprechaun trap before I moved to Blue Point in the second grade. Standing in Mrs. Riedell classroom, I watched wide-eyed and amazed as she introduced the premise behind what would become an annual tradition. The legend goes that those who outsmarted a Leprechaun on St. Patrick’s Day, would gain his riches for all their days. All we had to do was capture him. I remember coming home and explaining to my less enthusiastic mother what my teacher had tasked us with. I poured every ounce of my limited 7 year old ingenuity into that shoebox, cutting and pasting until I had what I surmised was a foolproof enclosure.

When March 17th dawned, we rushed to school only to enter the classroom and find that he had managed to escape our best efforts. But there was evidence he had briefly been there, in the miniature painted footprints and chocolate coins left behind. Just enough reminisce of magic to keep the ruse alive for years to come.

So come March we would construct a new trap, each year more elaborate than the last, only to be left empty-handed again. We were never disappointed, only determined. Plotting and planning a better device, a quicker release, more appealing bait. It was a foregone conclusion that we would eventually triumph, though what we were winning was never clearly defined. It was the prospect that we'd live to fight another day. The promise that there would always be another year.

I’ve long since left Sylvan Elementary behind, and am staring at the end of my tenure as a BBPHS student. But here I am, covered in glue and green glitter once more, aiding my 5 and 6 year old siblings in the beginning of their quest for gold. Watching them discover the wonder for themselves, refinding it myself. I’m better equipped these days, with AP Computer Science and Physics under my belt, that little bugger and I are on more evening footing now. I’m sure if we manage to just secure this trap door…


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