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Tuesday, July 13, 2010

3 Summer Holidays

We're officially in the "dog days" of summer, having just finished up the 4th of July, and now embarking on the longest gap we endure between major holidays (the next is Labor Day - September 6) all year. As a nation, we love our holidays - taking time from our ever-increasingly busy lives to celebrate our past, revel in our present and toast our future (all of which usually involve some amount of public intoxication and overeating). Which is why it has always perplexed me that during our most celebrated season - the proverbial American summertime - we have the fewest holidays of any season. The big three day weekends and our beloved Independence Day notwithstanding, the summer really could use a few more celebrations - especially during those white hot days of July and August where the U.S. power grid get more stressed than a fat kid before gym class and most days are spent waiting for the sun to go down so the outside temperature is once again capable of sustaining human life. So in the interests of the public good, here are 3 new holiday suggestions for the late summer:

1. Appropriately Sized Swimwear Day - To be celebrated every year on the third Saturday in July. Every A.S.S. day we celebrate those brave men and women who go against the grain of fashion magazines, reality television, and the sales girls' advice at Pac Sun by wearing swimwear appropriate to their body size, type, shape, etc. We would each honor their valor by donning a swimsuit that covers a percentage of our body exactly equal to our latest body fat measurements. Local clothiers will offer free BMI measurements, and swimwear discounted proportionally with the size (i.e. small = 10% off, XXXL = 75% off, etc.). Just think, for one day a year you can go to your local beach, pool, or water park without fear of having your retinas scarred by a 350 lb man in board shorts, a 60 year old European man in Speedo, or a woman who can't reliably spot her toes wearing a thong bikini. Wouldn't it be nice to see someone with 33% body fat cover up the middle third of their body? Or even nicer to celebrate A.S.S. day by not having to see any that you don't want to?

2. Halle Berry Day - In celebration of the delightful Ms. Berry's birthday, August 14. If you're an American man, no matter your sexual preference, color or prurient proclivities, Halle Berry's name has crossed your lips at some point in a discussion of people you'd like to see naked. Hell, even her name is sexy - and that's actually her real name (okay well, it's her middle and last name, but c'mon, you didn't really expect her to go by "Maria" did you?). Aside from being mentioned in countless articles about having a face so symmetrical that it's "mathematically" beautiful, and skin so flawless that it's "evolutionarily" beautiful, it's still "that scene" from the otherwise forgettable Swordfish that sticks in my brain like peanut butter to the roof of my mouth. She was the female analog to Wesley Snipes in Jungle Fever and is the only face that most of the y-chromosome set can recall from the entire movie. In a nation where we celebrate beauty so regularly, it seems like we ought to celebrate at least one birthday on behalf of a transcendentally beautiful woman - who also seems to live her life relatively scandal free and hasn't succumbed to the fame-whorishness that most of her Hollywood counterparts seem to be afflicted with.

3. Hawai'i Day - August 21, in celebration of getting our 50th and probably final state admitted to the union. The U.S. getting Hawai'i is like the rest of us finally getting a summer home. Sure, it's not really practical to live in year-round, but it sure is nice for a couple months. Besides, after the uber-pragmatic move that our 49th state was, we deserved a little luxury, didn't we? And what is more American than Hawai'i? The Kingdom of Hawaii was sovereign from 1810 until 1893 when the monarchy was overthrown by resident American (and some European) businessmen. It was then an independent republic from 1894 until 1898, when it was annexed by the United States as a territory, becoming a state in 1959. A kingdom overthrown by businessmen? To be any more American, you'd have to stand in the middle of enormous apple pie while simultaneously waving a baseball bat and an American flag. And sure, we didn't really need it, but it completed the set so nicely. While Alaska gave us a place to get oil once Texas runs out, a legitimate wilderness/frontier for the "Walden" crowd to run off to when they give up on society, and enough additional land mass to move ahead of Australia and Brazil in the "size matters" contest at the UN - Hawai'i has pretty much just given us beaches that don't suck and a legitimate shot at beating the Australians in surfing contests (okay, okay, and the current President - provided you don't believe Honolulu is located in Africa). The bottom line is, if any state deserves a national holiday attached to its statehood, it's surely our last one - because you've got to love that the same process that started with Delaware ended with an island paradise in the south Pacific.

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In the end, we've really got more holidays than we know what to do with. For those of you that don't know - today is actually both Tapioca Pudding Day and Cow Appreciation Day (yes, seriously). It's just the we don't really celebrate most of them - which is perplexing, considering that Americans hardly need much of an excuse to take a day off. But in the end, it takes much more than a government declaration to make a holiday an actual holiday. What you really need is a critical mass of people who are willing to set aside the banality of their everyday lives and their well-considered maturity to dress up, over-decorate their spaces, buy tremendously unhealthy food for themselves and others, and to do it all in the name of something they hardly consider for the balance of the year (that or Hallmark to decide they can sell cards for it). Of course, before you can get that, it takes one brave soul to lead the way. And so, you can find me this Saturday, out at the pool, with swim trunks covering 14.5% of my naked behind, a month from now watching Swordfish alone in the dark, and week later wearing a grass skirt and a coconut bra. Now if I could only figure out a way to celebrate Hawai'i Day...


Anonymous said...

This is definitely one of my favorites, Glenn!! Well done!!



Anonymous said...

What about August 25th?? The amazing and incredible celebration of Kevin Osborne!!


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