Monday, September 06, 2010
Keeping in the true spirit of this holiday, here's a reprint. I trot it out of the mothballs pretty much every year around this time to do it's semi-humorous little dance. I believe this is it's fifth appearance.
(I know "it's", with the apostrophe, is generally incorrect when referring to something inanimate, but I figure this post has been resurrected enough times to qualify as a life form.)
(By the way, I know, from what I promised in my last non-reprint posting, some of you might have been expecting something completely different. You'll get it soon, but, as alluded to above, I've taken to heart the "let's not do any work" part of this holiday.)
Be that as it may - and, if it isn't now, I bet it might have been during one or two of the previous times I published this - here's...
Let's hear it for Labor Day, the only holiday specifically created as an excuse to do absolutely nothing!
Oh, sure, there are those other days throughout the year when you don't have to go to work, but they all require at least a grudging acknowledgment of somebody or some thing; saying prayers, listening to speeches, the preparation of a gluttonous feast. Labor Day asks only that you revel in sloth (which is my second-favorite deadly sin.)
I hear someone saying, "Oh, yeah, wise guy? What about New Years Day? You don't have to do a damned thing on New Years Day!" It troubles me that I'm still hearing the voices, but I'll answer the question. Hangovers. The only reason New Years Day is a holiday is because you couldn't get diddly-squat out of the work force after New Years Eve. Everyone gets stinky drunk and stays up until at least 2 am the night before. You can't expect much else from folks the next day except for them to lay on the couch like slugs watching Oklahoma get their asses handed to them by Florida/Boise State/West Virginia/The Little Sisters Of The Poor.
Next up on the calendar is Martin Luther King day. Nice guy, but you get history lessons for 24 hours. Next!
President's Day. This used to be Washington's Birthday, and in some places you also got Lincoln's Birthday off, too, but now you get a combined day honoring Harding, Taft, Clinton, Obama, and whichever bozo we elect in 2012. There are some mighty fine deals on cars, but that's not enough to make up for the gratuitousness.
Saint Patrick's Day. This is one of those days that isn't really a holiday because you don't get the day off - unless you work for the state government in Massachusetts, in which case they call it "Evacuation Day" and you get time off to try and figure out just what in hell that means. However, most folks recognize Saint Patrick's as a special day. This is because they see the Irish getting looped and beating the bejeebers out of each other. They figure that if they'll do that to themselves, what will they do to someone else if that person isn't wearing green? So they do.
Memorial Day. One of two days on the calendar specifically set aside to honor those folks who served in war. The other is Veterans Day. Veterans Day started out as Armistice Day, and was created as a remembrance of that day when peace was declared at the end of World War One. Of course, in those days they didn't have to number their wars; they just called it The Great War, because they didn't expect their children to be stupid enough to have another one. After World War Two, they realized that the calendar might get too full of holidays if we took a day off to celebrate the end of every war to end all wars, so they changed it to Veterans Day. For some folks - myself included - Veterans Day is the day you trade off at work so that you can have the Friday after Thanksgiving.
July 4th! Fireworks! Parades! Speeches! Concerts! Way too busy to even be considered!
Columbus Day. Nice little holiday honoring a man who thought he was going to India, but who ended up here instead. Although I really like the idea of a holiday honoring someone who became famous via the expedient of being utterly mistaken, the day has become way too politicized in recent years to totally relax about. Let's move on.
Halloween. See Saint Patrick's Day, but exchange "children" for "Irish", "sugar addled" for "loopy", and "give 'em some candy" for "wear something green". Actually, in recent years this has become more of an excuse for adults to wear silly costumes and drink copiously (which is what most holidays eventually devolve into, by the way.)
Thanksgiving. Eat gigantic amounts of food and flop down into an easy chair to watch the Detroit Lions embarrass themselves nationally (as opposed to locally, which they do the rest of the year.) Thanksgiving is followed by Friday After Thanksgiving, which doesn't really have an official name. I've been proposing "National Shitloads Of Leftovers Day" for some time now. Thus far, nobody with any clout has listened to my suggestion (which is probably the very reason they have clout. However, I digress.)
Finally, we get to December. Religious holidays abound, which, while fun and all, do require you to go someplace and mumble stuff at the very least. Anyway, the weeks beforehand certainly require more work from you than any other holidays - shopping, wrapping, cursing - and take so much out of you, both mentally and physically, that the day or two you get off don't come anywhere near to enough of a rest to make up for what came before, which is why you get shitfaced on New Years Eve.
So, let us be thankful for Labor Day. Or not, if that seems like too much work.