By the time you read this, the smell of burgers and brats will fill the air, loud cracks and pops will be heard every few seconds, and dogs everywhere will howl and cower – some running for the hills, never to seen again. Yes, the Fourth of July is a joyous holiday, unless you’re scratching fleas or driving drunk.
Holidays are a dime-a-dozen, but nearly everyone has that personal favorite to anticipate with a passion, (excluding maybe “Harvey Milk Day,” suffering from its close proximity to Mother’s Day). While pondering which might be America’s favorite, I realized one’s preference might reveal more about them than a Rorschach test.
I typically use Simpsons characters for journalistic reference. Homer Simpson might look at a Rorschach blot and mutter, “Mmmm; doughnuts smothered in gravy,” while Barney, seeing that same ink sample would likely bark, “Wow, a 12-pack of Duff Beer, buuurp,” (that loud, long belch that makes his lips flutter endearingly). Lonely “Comic Book Guy” maybe sees a pornographic image of Veronica and Betty, while Sideshow Bob sees an ice pick in Bart’s ear.
Do you see where I’m going with this? Holiday preferences are like ink translations. The rotund (never use the always-inappropriate “fat”) likely begin drooling days before Thanksgiving, while future rehab in-patients enter early July giddy as schoolgirls. That chronically-libidinous individual (and I don’t label anyone as “pervert”) loves Halloween since it’s the one night he could conceivably see that curvy bank teller dressed as Wonder Woman.
New Year’s Eve, another boozy favorite, is often referred to as “Amateur Night,” to many aging drinkers, a good night to just stay home and throw darts at mice or something. It also gives a leg up for the quit-drinking New Year’s resolution, traditionally broken well before Valentine’s Day.
Statistically, those with the Independence Day, (nearly always falling on July 4th) highest blood alcohol content upon arrest know far less about the holiday they’re celebrating than do their non to moderate-drinker counterparts. Asked what the holiday means, many will stammer, “Ah, who knoshe?” Few even know it was Ichabod Crane, i.e. “The Headless Horseman,” who took the midnight ride down the cobbled streets of Boston screaming, “The British are coming!” That is where our “Independence” Day originates.
Here are some other holiday facts that might surprise you: 1) There are more alcohol-related traffic accidents on Groundhog Day than the 4th and New Years Eve combined. 2) A majority of those polled secretly prefer lasagna over turkey at the Thanksgiving table. 3) Paperweights are still the preferred Christmas gift, (speaking volumes about the frustration of important documents constantly blowing off business desks).
Halloween is also often the favorite holiday night of those on probation, and any lush worth the salt on his Margarita knows why. I too was on probation many years ago, and during one of my innocent acts of defiance, Deputy Tom Ehlers unwittingly aided and abetted, assuming he was buying a beer for Hannibal Lechter. Who knew?
As a final holiday PSA, my Communications Director Eric Barton tells me Friday morning TBS airs a 15-hour, classic Seinfeld episode marathon. It’s like a Festivus miracle.