Oh Christopher

Oh Christopher (Columbus) what have you done for us lately? Or, maybe better said, “Why do we hate you now?”

I started out sort of kidding, but then upon further research realized that the “holiday” has drawn far more attack that I was going to offer. All I was going to do was complain that if the kids didn’t get the day off (and I didn’t have just cause to take a day off, too) then the banks should be open.  It only occurred to me as I looked at my deposit slip that I wrote out today, but which I could not submit. Sure, I could have done a digital deposit, but had already filled in one of the pre-printed (and oh, so valuable deposit slips) that I figured I’d go say hello to Amy at the bank tomorrow anyway.

My kids have never had off on this holiday. They get all of the Jewish Holidays (we enjoy them, too even if we don’t fast or celebrate with brisket, baked chicken, honey and challah.)

No surprise about the protests I guess, it is in line with the recent surge of protests for all things that are not “natural” and occurring with out strife of conquest. Which let’s face it is part of pretty much the majority of history. At least since the time that people could have things, there were other people who wanted them – to live and survive – only later did it become just about being the cutest chick at the party. Today let’s hope we go about getting them in a better way than a cat fight.

But, let’s get back to our boy who has lost his Google Doodle.

Ages and ages ago, Christopher Columbus (sailed the ocean blue) and when we can remember that rhyme, we remember that is was 1492. The holiday established based on the landing which was apparently in October; all this time I thought it was because of his birthday, similar to Valentine’s Day and such other holidays that Americans over the age of 30 have pretty much celebrated for their entire lives.

Interestingly enough, his birth day is unknown actually, while it is also in the month of October (according to Wikipedia) they can’t nail down the exact day because back then, it probably wasn’t all that important. Living through birth and the first couple years of a child’s life was more celebrated, even if not celebrated with cake and presents let alone a bank holiday named after the child.

So the Italian sailor survived the middle ages and was hired by the Queen of Spain … and found the world we call home. But, can we blame him? I mean him? Just that one guy?

Am I being ridiculous to think that if he didn’t, no one would? Someone was bound to find it and take it over weren’t they?  Anyway, after surviving his trek across the ocean through hurricane season I am sure, he landed somewhere south of here. That landing… well, it wasn’t celebrated for centuries. I mean, maybe sure, celebrated, but not with a holiday and all the (wait, do we have pomp and circumstance for CC? None that I can recall…) hooplah with a tree or dyed eggs or special foods or decorating or even dressing up like a pirate/ghost/witch.

Nope, there wasn’t that much to do but enjoy a day off and maybe eat dinner with the family. I am not entirely sure, I wasn’t around back then.

Way, way back then – in the early 1900s (see how I did that?) it was celebrated as more than just a bank holiday, it is/was the one lone October Monday holiday that would create an opportunity for a 3-day weekend which until recently was enjoyed by most students, teachers, employees and of course, the bankers.

No hope for it any longer I guess – or – is the fight still to be won?

Is it worth a fight?

Do we really care any more?

The Italian and Spanish immigrants did (or do if they are still with us, few of them from the early 20th century are here today) but it was probably created to help them feel, well, more welcome. One of their paisans…from the old country… which they left for a better future and a better opportunity for their families.

Thank goodness they did. My kids wouldn’t be here today and I probably would be off some where else doing something far different than this.

So, I am all for a new holiday and while I doubt that we will select, let’s see, Oh Christopher Robin for our next bank-holiday-Monday in October, I do hope they pick something…even if not a someone. This is one darn long month and it has only just begun.

~ Dawn aka Hat Girl

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