Nobody on the road
Nobody on the beach
I feel it in the air
The summers out of reach- Don Henley The Boys of Summer
We mark the start of summer with Memorial Day.
People gather in a field of stone markers to place plastic flowers (during the growing season, duh) on a plot of land which, per foot, cost more than real estate in Manhattan. They boohoo over some dead person that became worm poop years ago.
Remembering the horrors of grandpa’s head collapsing from brain cancer is great kickoff for the season of fun.
The start of summer is the end of the school year and the beginning of a time of freedom for millions of children across the country. There is no more joyous act than running (no one walks) out those doors and away from the oppressive regime of forced education. No more pencils, no more books, no more teachers’ dirty looks. Perhaps this should updated to the more current idiom: no more calculators, no more manifestos, no more teachers’ politically correct safe saccharin non-committal brainwashing.
With the kids out of school and able to travel without losing days of crucial indoctrination, adults are able to take vacation. This results in a generally more relaxed atmosphere for everyone in the summer.
Traffic is better. There are no school busses plodding along two abreast at 10 miles an hour with cars backed up for a mile behind them. Also, there are no housewives in giant SUVs driving their spoiled little brats to school, yacking on the phone and using the mirror to adjust their makeup.
The pressure at work is lessened. Fewer colleagues means less bullshit to deal with. And what brings greater joy than that email from the boss telling everyone he will be gone for two weeks on vacation in Piscataway? Plus there is the secret joy of knowing he will be stuck in a car with three smelly, bratty kids for two days. No one notices if you sneak out early on Friday for a “head start on the weekend.” Mostly because everyone has already snuck out.
Swimming, wife beaters with no bra, picnics, short shorts, baseball, belly shirts, camping, thongs, fishing, boating, bikinis, vacations, halter tops…it’s a nice time of year. We can go outside and have fun letting loose our unbridled energy. Or, as in my case, drinking beer under a tree and snoozing in a hammock. It’s a season of joy and revelry.
After three short months, it all comes to an end. How do we mark the demise of the happy season? We celebrate with holiday Labor Day- a holiday dedicated to work!
School busses and yentas in Suburbans are back on the road. Annoying colleagues and overbearing bosses are in everyday. You’ll feel like an antelope doing a death march in front of a pride lions if you dare leave at 4:55 on Friday.
The shorter days and cooler nights point to the imminent return of cold, darkness, and snow. We can only look forward to being held inside like prisoners, playing Scrabble, and not being able to see any more girl flesh than face and hands.
Who the hell came up with ass-backward placement of these two holidays? Considering the total lack of reason and logic, it had to be the government.
We need to clean up this paradoxical mess. Getting it in order will quell the rest of the rampant chaos which is consuming this country. Fire some sense over its bow and the madness will surrender faster than a Frenchman at a Nazi rally.
“We worked all year and now we can rest from our labors with barbecues and doing nothing” is a great way to start the summer season.
“Oh well, we are already bummed so we may as well go see the dead people” is a great way to end it. Plus it puts us in the proper, somber mood to pretend we care about someone we didn’t like when they were alive.
This is easy to fix- just transpose the two holidays. Last weekend in May, Labor Day. First weekend in September, Memorial Day. The only people that would be negatively impacted are those in the calendar industry. But calendars are going the way of the dinosaur so no one cares.
There is one codicil. That aged comedian who wasn’t funny even at the height of his career? The one that spends 36 hours bilking money out of people by parading crippled kids across the TV screen between horrible musical acts?
His ass stays in September.