Another Day, Another Celebration.

5 05 2010

Yesterday was Star Wars Day. The day when showing off your lightsaber is something to be celebrated.

I know this, not because I am a massive fan of the franchise – with the obvious exception of the Ewoks and the irritation that was Jar Jar Binks, but because a mate of mine in the UK (through the “social network” that is Facebook) wished me a happy Star Wars Day. When it was pointed out that it was also his wedding anniversary, he did admit that maybe his priorities were slightly askew. 

And why was yesterday being celebrated as SW Day? Granted that the film was released in May 1977, but everybody knows that it arrived in cinemas on May 25th in the USA (although we had to wait until December in the UK!!!!!). The answer is that some enterprising soul decided that the tagline of the film would be funny if spoken by a character with a lisp hence………..May the Fourth be with you.

Seriously. Not a joke.

I celebrated by wearing a T-shirt with a stormtrooper on it and was actually wished a happy SW day by 2 people in the street and by a retail assistant. Again, not a joke.

Monday 3rd May was World Press Freedom Day. I observed this by reading as many newspapers as I could, even managing to get my hands on a copy of The Mail on Sunday (UK, slightly Right-Wing) and, in the run up to the general election in my country of birth, gorged myself on the freedom of the British press before feeling slightly soiled and so turned to the Boston Herald for some light relief.

Who decides these days? Is there some kind of global committee designating individual days for whatever they feel like? Why should we be concerned about the freedom of the press on one day in May? Surely every day should be World Press Freedom Day!

What will we be asked to celebrate next? World Hug A Politician Day? National Lindsay Lohan Support Day? A week of festivities to celebrate the birth of Steve Jobs? Professional Assistant Day?*

Today is Cinco De Mayo, a voluntarily observed holiday that celebrates a victory by the Mexicans over the French in the Battle of Puebla in 1862. It is a symbol of Mexican heritage and pride, and will ensure that a large percentage of the Mexican population in the US will awake with a slight hangover.

Unlike the ludicrous worldwide drinking day that is March 17th, I am not expecting to be greeted by a sea of buffoons wearing sombreros and t-shirts inviting me to “Kiss Me, I’m Mexican”. This is a day when we consider the overcoming of overwhelming odds and as the current debate over immigration rages in Arizona, perhaps we should take some time to raise a glass to everyone who has fought to preserve their freedom and to ensure that their way of life is maintained.

Alternatively we could just thank the Ewoks for destroying the Galactic Empire.

*this actually exists, it is known as Administrative Professionals Day and is usually observed in the last week of April

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