Now the jubilee weekend is over, people are back to work and life has returned to it’s normal pace, everything feels a bit flat. We love to celebrate holidays and festivals and happily fork over billions to the greeting card industry each year. Whilst the Queen’s 60 year reign is one of the more respectable holidays, many slightly less serious occasions have brightened up our week, including some of my favourites; Oreo Cookie Day, ‘What if Dogs and Cats had Opposite Thumbs’ Day and even National Grammar Day. Here are some particularly good, bad and downright bizarre ones.
Driving Side Switch Days.
On September 7th and 8th in 2009, Samoans were given two days off work to drive on the other side of the road in preparation for the actual switch. Although they were overwhelmingly against the change, at least (if the roads weren’t completely gridlocked) two days off to go to the beach took away the sting.
National Rebelliousness Day
On July 26th, Cubans get to live the dream. Getting to stick two fingers up at ‘the man’, this holiday commemorates the attack on military barracks in 1953. It’s not as exciting as it sounds, there’s no swearing at teachers, playing music too loudly or getting too drunk, the focus is instead on parades and cultural performances. An interesting holiday nonetheless.
Play God Day
January 9th in the US is Play God Day, officially 24 hours to help and solve others’ problems, but really just a day where meddling in people’s lives is allowed. The origins of the holiday seem to stem from greeting card companies, so it actually has no cultural or religious value, but a great excuse to tell your friend to dump the bad guy she’s been seeing regardless (although be prepared for the consequences!).
Boring, yes. Over-commercialised, yes. But if you ignore the millions that greeting card companies make and the tacky decorations, a holiday to tell your loved one how much they mean to you and a perfect excuse to spend some quality time is pretty hard to beat. And singletons, don’t close this page down yet. Loved ones aren’t confined to boyfriends or girlfriends, spending a night in with friends and movies is just as rewarding. A holiday celebrating love? Who needs Oreo Day!
Flip Flop Day
The 15th June encourages us to ‘free our feet’ and don flip flops, whatever shape, size and colour for the day. Whilst the hotter countries may do this without struggle, getting a hot, flip flop worthy day in England isn’t quite as simple – get ready for wet feet.
Be Kind to Lawyers Day
10th April brings a day where we’re encouraged to be kind to lawyers. Wine and dine them, shower them in gifts and show them how grateful we are for their hard work. Something tells me this holiday won’t go down so well…
Straw Bear Day
This old English festival occurring on the 7th January involves a male being completely covered in straw and lead to houses in the area. He must dance in exchange for money, food or beer. This is an old tradition which died out until it was revived in 1980… we’re not sure that’s a good thing.
Punch Your Neighbour Day
First rule of Punch Your Neighbour Day is don’t talk about Punch Your Neighbour Day. Celebrated in Bolivia annually on May 7th, thousands descend on the small city of Macha to… well… beat the crap out of their neighbours. It’s a violent festival dating back 600 years and, between overgrown trees, noisy kids and loud music, I’m sure there are a few families that wouldn’t mind introducing it in England.