Today is Mother’s Day. Thanks to the work of Anna Jarvis, who thought her own mom was just swell, this has been a National Holiday since 1914. Apparently after spending almost a decade advocating for Mother’s Day, she got her wish, and within a decade already regretted the whole thing. No, she and her mom didn’t get into a fight over tulips instead of roses. Jarvis was disgusted by the commercialization of the day that she fought for, and spent the next couple decades trying to rescind the holiday. She obviously was not successful and was eventually admitted to a sanitarium where she died a few years later. She never had children of her own. Happy Mother’s Day!
I know, horrible, right? But somewhat fitting. How much work do moms do every day that goes unnoticed or unappreciated? It’s a miracle that all moms aren’t admitted to mental institutions. Jarvis should be celebrated for wanting to create a day to honor our mothers because they most certainly deserve it. But to get caught up worrying that someone (Hallmark, Florists, etc) are making a profit off the holiday was naive and misguided. Maybe the early 1900s were a less cynical time but OF COURSE someone is going to try to make money off it. That’s probably why President Wilson approved the damn thing in the first place. If it was approved today, it would be assumed every damn senator that passed the bill had family members on the Board of 1-800-Flowers and Sweetums Candy Corporation. That’s the cost of doing business. Murica.
So big deal, it’s another greeting card holiday. Doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take the time or money to spend it on the person you love for one goddamn day a year. Same for Valentine’s Day. And Christmas. Alright so there’s a few more days a year that you need to pony up for. But think about all the days growing up that your mother spent time, money, and effort on you. My mother threaded Styrofoam planets, painted models of the human lungs, and carved the busts of Roman Emperors out of clay just so I wouldn’t come to school with nothing. Or with a cup of dirt. What the hell was my father doing this whole time? Getting Drunk? Why do we even have Father’s Day? I just buy him a bottle of booze anyway. Tough fucking job he has.
When I was a kid, like most self centered little brats, I asked why there wasn’t a Child’s Day. My parents, like most parents probably did, told me that every day is Child’s Day. It’s true. I don’t have any yet, but man they do seem like demanding little fucks, right? Keep them alive and they just want more. So no, I don’t think children deserve another day. But some people probably do. The first group that come to mind are Native Americans. I mean the guy that committed genocide against them gets a day and they get squat. Actually, Native American Heritage Day officially became a civil holiday starting in 2008. It’s the day after Thanksgiving. And you thought Jarvis had a gripe with commercialism getting in the way of her holiday. At least those greetings card were still going to Mom. I don’t think the Big Screen TVs purchased the day after Thanksgiving every year are to honor our country’s indigenous peoples, but hey I’ve been wrong before (link omitted, eat shit, like you never make mistakes).
Personally, I think we need more holidays that come with days off. Not just acknowledgment days, but real tradition builders. The kind that has either gifts, a large meal, or an unhealthy amount of drinking involved. All three would be ideal. Religion is waning in popularity so I don’t think it’s going to come from that path. People aren’t so big on wars in recent decades, despite what the decal on the window of their pick-up truck may suggest, so I’m thinking Veteran’s and Memorial Days will have to keep to themselves for now. I heard this spring people were trying to make Opening Day a national holiday. I love baseball, but this already got shot down by the White House. They said it was up to Congress. Also, it’s ridiculous.
I’ve heard rumors over the years that people want to make 9/11 a holiday but…I don’t feel comfortable making a joke about it, so I have nothing further to say. I really don’t see any other days under serious consideration for Holiday status. I thought The Best Man Holiday was one, but then I realized it’s just a movie and I am a white guy. Don’t we have anything worth celebrating? Anyone else worth honoring? We can’t do better than No Pants Day? This one asshole invented 90 holidays on his own. They include Blah Blah Blah Day, Crackers Over the Keyboard Day, and Yell “Fudge” at the Cobras in North America Day. We can do better people. Just off the top of my head…Super Hero Day. Everyone wears capes and takes justice into their own hands. What could go wrong?!
You could argue that creating more holidays would only further reduce the importance of the ones that we already have and I suppose I could see your point. Even though I want at least one day to go all Boondock Saints while dressed in an uncomfortably spandex costume, I will hold off for the greater good. Plus Marvel would just capitalize on the whole thing anyway. Who do they think they are, ruining the purity of my well intentioned holiday. THIS. This why Mother’s Day is underrated. Because they spent the time on all those school projects, so that we get into AP and Honors classes in High School, so that we can get into great colleges, and they even scrape to find the money to help pay for it. And after all that education all we want to do is the same bullshit we were imaging in our pajamas decades ago. Super Hero Day. Hopeless. So today please find your mother and tell her your love her. And maybe I’m sorry. Or at least put on some real clothes (no capes) and take her out for brunch.