underpurplemoon's picture
underpurplemoon from PDX October 9, 2012 - 6:13pm

For example: my birthday will land on a national holiday, and I thought about not celebrating it at all. Just wanted to hear people's thoughts.

Dave's picture
Dave from a city near you is reading constantly October 9, 2012 - 6:17pm

Have a birthday party, no work means no excuse not to come.

Covewriter's picture
Covewriter from Nashville, Tennessee is reading & Sons October 9, 2012 - 10:03pm

My birthday is on Halloween! I used to celebrate big time as a kid, so much fun parties! Fortune tellers, friends to trick or treat and spend the night.  Now it's just mostly me at home waiting for kids to come by, which I wouldn't miss for the world. Best holiday/ birthday ever.

underpurplemoon's picture
underpurplemoon from PDX October 9, 2012 - 10:14pm

Are you dressing up for your birthday? I'm going to dress up for your birthday. Just putting on a life jacket and call it my costume.

Dave's picture
Dave from a city near you is reading constantly October 9, 2012 - 10:17pm

Im trying for a birthday suit joke, but it's just not happening. I fail. 

underpurplemoon's picture
underpurplemoon from PDX October 9, 2012 - 10:25pm

Im trying for a birthday suit joke, but it's just not happening. I fail.

Portland has a nude beach, I may go there on my birthday alone because it will be Mother's Day and everyone else will be celebrating the day with their mother.

Covewriter's picture
Covewriter from Nashville, Tennessee is reading & Sons October 9, 2012 - 10:50pm

You are wearing only a life jacket? Wow. I'm gonna be a witch. Best Halloween costume ever. Tights, hat, black mini skirt. I have a jet black cat , midnight, at my side.  I'm the real thing.

underpurplemoon's picture
underpurplemoon from PDX October 10, 2012 - 12:42am

I need a more creative costume.

big_old_dave's picture
big_old_dave from Watford, about 20 miles outside London, Uk October 17, 2012 - 6:29am

My birthday is on xmas day, getting drunk I find helps with the Jesus jokes.

bryanhowie's picture
bryanhowie from FW, ID is reading East of Eden. Steinbeck is FUCKING AMAZING. October 17, 2012 - 6:41am

One of my cousin's kids was born on the Fourth of July.  For years, she thought that they were having a b-b-q, and party, and fireworks display for her birthday.  She loved it.  She was probably 4 or 5 before it finally dawned on her that it was a holiday and not just her birthday.  I think she was disappointed, but still... fireworks on her birthday.

Jack Campbell Jr.'s picture
Jack Campbell Jr. from Lawrence, KS is reading American Rust by Phillipp Meyer October 17, 2012 - 7:56am

Mine generally lands on Memorial Day. Nothing says Happy Birthday like trips to the local graveyards. It might explain my fascination with death in writing.

sorenrajack's picture
sorenrajack February 21, 2014 - 6:47am

If my birthday will be treated as a national holiday then I will be happy because in the same day I have to celebrate it but there won't be any need to take a holiday. I would like to to any bar like Bar Mitzvah Nyc to enjoy with my friends. As well as you can get the  entertainment with music, you can dance and play different games. I love to celebrate my birthday with my friends.

Thuggish's picture
Thuggish from Vegas is reading Day of the Jackal February 21, 2014 - 10:51am

I'd do whatever I could to get the kids out of the house...

justwords's picture
justwords from suburb of Birmingham, AL is reading The Tomb, F. Paul Wilson; A Long Way Down, Nick Hornby February 21, 2014 - 3:43pm

My birthday is in September; I remember at the end of the day on 9/11 being glad it didn't happen on my birthday. Pretty shallow I guess--like I said, it was at the end of a very long, bad day.

electric_symphony's picture
electric_symphony November 20, 2016 - 12:15pm

My birthday is on Columbus Day -- such an awful day to celebrate a birthday, because it's a day we should ardently refuse to celebrate anything. I was literally born 499 years after the 'discovery' of land that led to the one main example of a Western genocide that very few people consider a genocide.

I'd rather have my birthday be any other day of the year. No one should ever feel ashamed at celebrating a birthday because of the disgusting things also associated with that day.

And yes, when I was a kid -- in primary school, middle school and high school -- I made exstensive comments and jabs about Columbus Day and its absurdities, over-shared disgusting truths with classmates and got in trouble plenty of times.

Someone has to say it though, right?

Thuggish's picture
Thuggish from Vegas is reading Day of the Jackal November 20, 2016 - 9:23pm

sigh...

electric_symphony's picture
electric_symphony November 21, 2016 - 3:50pm

The whole Standing Rock thing has made this a bandwagon concern and something trendy, I know. It irks me more than I want to admit, because I suppose I should appreciate anyone's interest after such long periods of apathy. But whatever.

If your sigh is for more detailed reasons, could you elaborate? I'm just curious.

Thuggish's picture
Thuggish from Vegas is reading Day of the Jackal November 21, 2016 - 9:21pm

My sigh is partially because it's such a trendy thing to hate on Columbus day... with the chalk outlines all around college campuses and little messages that say "Columbus killed me" and all that shit...

But he was one of how many people who participated in those things? Those were the standards of the time. Caesar killed and enslaved millions when he conquered Gaul, would we hate on him if we had some kind of celebration of him?

How about George Washington? Thomas Jefferson? They owned slaves, however well they may have treated them. (Don't go on about Jefferson fucking his slaves too, people apparently have figured out it was most likely is brother.) They were flawed men, who, frankly, participated in a horrendous evil. But those were the standards of the time. They also did great things. So great that, intersetingly enough, generations down the road, benefited the decendents of those slaves, who would otherwise almost certainly be in a far, far worse situation in their home countries. (Have you seen what's going on over there? Yet Paul Mooney says I owe him reparations...)

I'm all about knowing the truth and not idolizing anyone, and I would cringe at hiding what Columbus, Washington, or anyone else did. But let's also have some context. Find me one perfect human being and I'll show you fiction's most boring character.

 

And! Since what I just presented was, I'm pretty sure, a reasonable way to look at things, almost no one in this country these days will get on board. Or even hear me out.

And that's why I sigh. I'm so tired of hearing about it.

electric_symphony's picture
electric_symphony November 21, 2016 - 10:09pm

Well I'm certainly not going to dismiss your opinion, because it's entirely valid. It is far too trendy to hate on Columbus Day these days, and the main reason I'm sick of the trendiness is because these people all over my facebook feed who are boasting about donations to DAPL and sharing ridiculous hashtags in support are the same damn people who told me ten years ago in high school to 'Shut the hell up, it's just a holiday. What does any of it have to do with you?' But now that social activism is all the rage for twenty-somethings, suddenly they give a shit. It bothers me because they seem to do it merely out of the benefit to their own image and reputation rather than any kind of genuine belief in a cause or outrage at the situation.

As a disclaimer, yes, I know this sounds incredibly obnoxious, but I don't know how else to say it without sounding like an elitist, and if it comes out that way, I apologize: I'm not a trendy college student. My distaste for Columbus was not brought on by some desire to be trendy or followed on social media. Once we started learning about Columbus and the discovery of America in elementary and middle school, I started to do a lot of research into the subject because I was so curious given the birthday connection, and especially at such a young age, a lot of what I found disgusted me. Immensley. And it's stayed with me for a long time. That's all I'll say about that.

My problem with Columbus is not so much that he exists, but that he has a holiday dedicated to celebrating the atrocities he commited. That we teach five year old children a song that's nothing but hero-worship covered in sugary whip cream and sprinkles. If that's not instilling blind adoration bordering on brainwashing, I don't know what is.

I entirely agree with your point about other similar men in history. I never liked the fact that we ignore a lot of the entire Roman Empire's faults because of the all culture we appropriated from them. I never liked the fact that we ignore that Britain was a once a huge power-center for all kinds of human rights atrocities. Including colonalism, which is the forefather ideology for the reason behind Columbus, anyway. And why do we do we pretend this era of history never existed? Because of cute people with cute accents and good television, I guess.

Same with the forefathers of this country. All your points are entirely valid, I just wanted to express why Columbus Day is the one that hits me more personally than any of the others.

Reading back on my initial message, I realize that it came out strong and can see why you sighed, and where you got your general impression of what I was saying. You're right, I didn't propose or even allow any context. I think the main reason for that is that it was a lot of pent up anger and frustration being released about all the people I see daily on my facebook feed posting and supporting the DAPL and saying they've always cared about the plight of Native Americans, when I know all they care about is how awesome it makes them look to be so supportive of marginalized groups.

If I had said any of that on facebook, I would've gotten spit-roasted. So that initial post was mostly an outlet for my anger, but I realize that none of it was a logical or reasoned argument, so I hope you can view this post as a more representative display of what I meant.

And as an American, I completely understand and even agree with your arguments.

Thanks for elaborating and making me take a look back and change the way I'm instinctively reacting to things.

Jose F. Diaz's picture
Jose F. Diaz from Boston is reading Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel November 22, 2016 - 1:22am

I guess the problem with the argument is that people are allowed to change their opinions and their level of involvement over time. We change. It's what we do. So, does it matter that it's all the rage and people get a boost in reputation by being against the DAPL? Or, does the only thing that really matters is that we save our habitat? Save our drinking water? 

Of course, that argument is one that is not in a direct response to yours, but is attacking obliquely.

If you want a pure desire to change the world, a desire to give without receiving, a belief that we as humans don't want recognition for our good deeds, you may find yourself on a very small island.

We have ulterior motives. When I help a girl I'm attracted to, I'm doing it to be helpful, but I'm not above wanting a little more gratitude. But neither am I going to shame the person because they didn't do what I thought they should. It isn't about controlling other people, but providing the space for them to surprise you. I'm not going to the dakotas to protest, but I'm on their side. Am I reputation whore? 

We can find every great figure and knock them down. We can find every unknown and find amazing acts. People are complex. (obvious? yeah, moving on...)

So, in short, stop generalizing humans. Except me. You should absolutely generalize me.

Kedzie's picture
Kedzie from the SF Bay Area is reading The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien November 22, 2016 - 2:50am

Had Hillary put on her big girl pantsuit and flown to ND to stand with Standing Rock she'd be president now. All them disaffected millenials and environmentalists woulda finally had reason to hold their noses and vote.

Instead, she issued a mealy-mouthed, cake-and-eat-it-too official statement that was dog whistle for "go ahead and protest, just don't make too much noise. And stay outta the way of those bull dozers, they're expensive!"

The fix was in for Enbridge.

And now we got president Chump.

 

Thuggish's picture
Thuggish from Vegas is reading Day of the Jackal November 22, 2016 - 11:25am

^ Hmm... I don't think she would. They weren't showing up before for her, the pipeline most people haven't even heard about wouldn't have got a millenial to the polls. Because electric_symphony is right, everyone gives a shit when it's typing a hashtag. Far fewer gives a shit when they have to get off the couch. Especially with all her negatives. The DAPL is like... number 1,267 on most everyone's list these days. Above it were the likes of "jobs" and "FBI investigation" and "are we low on toothpaste?" 

Anyway, I got nothing against you or even your view, electric_symphony, it's just the subject. At this point, one mention is all it takes for me to roll my eyes and think, oh boy, here we go again...

Although, if I've actually changed a knee-jerk reaction in you (is that what you're saying?) I just might pat myself on the back.

 

And since I can't resist a joke...

#columbusforpresident

helpfulsnowman's picture
Community Manager
helpfulsnowman from Colorado is reading But What If We're Wrong? by Chuck Klosterman November 22, 2016 - 1:15pm

All I know is we used to get Columbus Day off, and now we don't, and I want a replacement day. I'd like a new person from history (or fiction) that allows me to take a day off, and I would strongly prefer if this person wore some sort of fun hat and that this person's accomplishments would lend themselves to a thematic parade.

Thuggish's picture
Thuggish from Vegas is reading Day of the Jackal November 22, 2016 - 4:18pm

I'm kind of with Neal Degrasse Tyson... Why don't we celebrate any scientists from this country?

 

helpfulsnowman's picture
Community Manager
helpfulsnowman from Colorado is reading But What If We're Wrong? by Chuck Klosterman November 23, 2016 - 3:39pm

I'd celebrate a Neil Day. 

Kedzie's picture
Kedzie from the SF Bay Area is reading The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien November 23, 2016 - 5:00pm

Neil Degrasse Tyson, Neil Young; Neil Diamond (hey, Thank The Lord for the Nighttime is killer!), Neil Patrick Harris, Neil Armstrong; yeah, Neil day is a go!  

Thuggish's picture
Thuggish from Vegas is reading Day of the Jackal November 23, 2016 - 5:32pm

How about a Tyson day so we can get some knock out action along with it?