Rant of the Day: Observed Holidays

To the people who decide which holidays are to be observed,
In light of Columbus Day coming up, I began to reflect on how some of these days arbitrarily came to be popular and observed. With thousands of amazing people having graced this great nation with their presence, such as Martin Luther King, Abraham Lincoln, and Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson, and remarkable events that have occurred in our country, such as our independence, the end of the Civil War, and that time I got two chicks to make out in front of me, I ask you, how do you decide on these nationally observed holidays? We will begin my inquiry with a story:

A man foreign to this land arrives here on a boat. This man was ambitious, cunning, and utterly ruthless. He was a man in search of wealth and power and saw opportunity in a rich land. Of Latin descent, this man exploited, murdered, and stole anything and everything he wanted, establishing a near-empire for himself. His ruthlessness had no bounds as long as it ended with him gaining wealth or power. The only end to such a tyranny was his early death in his villa.

Any guesses as to who it is? If you said Scarface, you are correct! But it is also a story of a man commemorated every year in our country. I speak, of course of Christopher Columbus. If I am on my way to the grocery store, taking a different route than normal, and drive my car into a park, crushing an old man feeding pigeons on a bench, I don’t cry out “Eureka! I’ve found a park!” I would cry out “Oh S**t!” as I’m handcuffed and booked for manslaughter and drunk driving. But here we are, celebrating a man who killed and enslaved thousands of natives and he didn’t even know where he was either! That’s why Native Americans are called Indians, of course. Sure, the two do look pretty similar for living thousands of miles away, but still… (I wonder if Columbus had to do that thing we all do when differentiating between Indian or “Indian” with the pointing to the middle of your forehead or waving your fingers behind your head like feathers. It’s not racist if we all do it…. Right?)

Working for a bank, I get this day off every year but I must say I almost refuse to crack open that 5th beer on that Monday afternoon because it makes me sick what Columbus did to those people. (And of course I only drink Leinenkugel beer because it has a Native American on the label) If it wasn’t for a paid day off, I would really do something about this.

Along with Good ‘ol Chris, you also have a day of observance for Leif Erickson. No, he was not the quarterback for Minnesota’s NFL team in the 70’s, but he was a Viking. You know; the race of people who raped and pillaged their way across a continent. He was so awful, so horrid, that the rapists and killers were like, “Whoa, this guy is nuts!” and kicked him out of Europe. Leif had nowhere to go so he came over to North America and “discovered” the new world well before Columbus’ time. So you guys decided to celebrate this guy with a day of observance. Who’s next, Jared from Subway?

Saint Patrick’s Day is another weird one for me. Sure, I don’t get a day off for this one but it’s still kind of bizarre to celebrate this guy’s achievements. I’m too lazy to do deep research of ‘Ol Paddy on Wikipedia, the leading source of inaccurate information for college students, but from what I’ve ever been told, he scared some snakes away, wore some pope hats that look like those folded napkins at a fancy restaurant, and apparently loved the color green. If scaring away a few snakes gets you sainthood, I should really fill out an application because I scare away and kill a crap-load of bugs for my wife, Jen, every day.

Nothing says “Let’s celebrate a Saint” like dressing up like leprechauns, getting blasted on booze, watching a parade in the freezing cold, and pinching people who don’t wear green. Just like Jesus would’ve wanted. I pinched a girl a few years ago for not wearing green and got in trouble. Apparently it’s frowned upon to give a female a purple-nurple. Yes, I was drinking and, yes, I was at work but I’m just trying to get into the spirit.

Daylight savings time. Not so much a holiday but more just an annoying day each year where I get an hour of sleep stolen away from me. And for what? So the .02 percent of the population that is farmers can get more work light? And to make it worse, they change it on a Saturday night going into Sunday! Sure, the logic seems sound at first, but what about the 90 percent of us “normal” people who go to bed (A.K.A. Pass out) hammered drunk Saturday night and wake up Sunday to complete darkness. In my foggy, sleep-deprived, hung-over mind, I am positive that the sun has burnt out and we’re all going to die. My wife is awakened by the sound of me crying like a baby, curled up in a ball. All because Old McDonald couldn’t set his alarm an hour earlier? Eee-eye-eee-eye-NO!

Valentine’s Day is another widely celebrated and recognized holiday. This is another Catholic holiday that has become popular in the secular world. I know even less about Saint Valentine but I assume he was a man of great passion who loved chocolates as much as he did getting laid. I’m almost positive this holiday was decided by upon by the women so that they could get free jewelry and candy. The guys are the one’s always busting their ass, spending money on all this stuff, just in the hopes that their lady will put out for them.

Man: “Hey Honey, happy Valentine’s Day! I hope you like caramel chocolate and diamonds!”

Woman: “Aww, how sweet! (Num num nom nom) Burp!”

Man: “Wanna go to the bedroom? I have champagne on ice in there…”

Woman: “Blehhh, sounds terrible! My stomach hurts from all that chocolate. I’m going to try to poop then take a nap….”

This holiday is supposed to celebrate the love of two people for each other so which one of you picked the mascot for this one? A naked, flying baby is the last thing I want to see or think about before I enter my wife. “Oh no, look out! He’s got a weapon! Looks like a bow and arrow. What kind of demon child is this?” You try to stay tumescent while staring at a naked baby with archery equipment aimed at you. I’m just saying, it’s hard to concentrate.

Whomever….. whoever??? Microsoft autocorrect says whoever…. Whoever you may be that decides these things, maybe you should spend a little less time deciding to downgrade Pluto to Dwarf-planet (I personally think it should be called “Little-planet”. We can’t call little people midgets anymore) and spend more time scrutinizing who and what we are observing for holidays. Don’t get me wrong, I love the days off of work. I just find it troubling that rapists, killers, and so-called saints that get their jollies off with flying babies are honored and Captain Kangaroo doesn’t get SH!T.

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