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Thread: Poor Holiday Planning

  1. #1
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Poor Holiday Planning

    I’m sure we’ve all heard the old saw about whoever planned the holidays did a poor job scheduling two turkey dinners so close together. Personally, I see no problem having turkey feasts at 30 day intervals, but if put to it, I could probably come up with quite a few other beefs about the timing and nature of many holidays…..

    Take for instance June 14th, Flag Day. Yeah yeah, the National Ensign is an important symbol and all but it’s only three weeks before Independence Day! Couldn’t we just hold on to all those patriotic thoughts and displays for just a few more days and schedule them for one convenient patriotic day off and not clutter up the calendar with so many second-stringer holidays (i.e. ones where you don’t get time off). Similar arguments could be raised for Patriot Day and Peal Harbor Day (nothing like ticking off ‘holidays’ that read like a laundry list of national axe grinding grievances over wrongs committed), or Valentines Day and Sweetest Day (ladies, isn’t expecting mushy sentiments one WHOLE day of the year demanding enough on the males of the world?)

    Not only are some holidays themselves deficient but frequently the spacing of the holidays leave much to be desired – why the paucity of days off between Presidents Day and Memorial Day? Similarly, even some of the shorter spans of the calendar come close to drought lengths. If having more holidays is not possible could we at least space them more evenly?

    If you were in charge of planning the holidays what would YOU change?
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

  2. #2
    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    I think that we should have the option of St. Patrick’s Day (and the day after) or Thanksgiving (and the day after) off.



    Additionally, in most parts of the Upper Peninsula, entire towns (including schools) shut down for the opening day of deer season! Deer Day is a serious holiday for many hunters.
    Last edited by michaelskis; 08 Oct 2007 at 3:21 PM. Reason: Add in Deer Day
    Not my monkey, not my circus. - Old Polish Proverb

  3. #3
    Cyburbian KSharpe's avatar
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    What in the hell is Sweetest Day?? I've never heard of this holiday, and am therefore angry about the myriad gifts I've missed extorting from my husband.
    Do you want to pet my monkey?

  4. #4
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Oh, and would I be far off by suggesting folks in the UK get cheated with Halloween and Guy Fawkes Day being so close to each other? Both provide lots of autumnal amusement...but are less than a week apart!
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

  5. #5
    Cyburbian
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    They should move Christmas to the fourth friday in December. It's a real bummer when it falls in the middle of the week and you can't swing a longe weekend out of the deal. But putting New Year's day the day after New years eve was genius. It gives you a whole day to recover.
    Off-topic:
    I'm bookmarking this thread for inspiration on this years Thanksgiving week column. Of course Maister will probably expect me to come up with a coupon for a weed burner in return.

  6. #6
    Cyburbian cch's avatar
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    I just wish the two big family-gathering holidays were not at a time when there can be super inclement weather, that we've got to drive through for 4 hour one-way trips.

  7. #7
    Cyburbian zman's avatar
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    I'd make Thanksgiving 2 days long just so I can get more stories from Maister
    You get all squeezed up inside/Like the days were carved in stone/You get all wired up inside/And it's bad to be alone

    You can go out, you can take a ride/And when you get out on your own/You get all smoothed out inside/And it's good to be alone
    -Peart

  8. #8
    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    If you were in charge of planning the holidays what would YOU change?
    More of them, with paid time off for them all! Halloween? I have to be home to stand by for the kiddie-gremlins! Flag Day? I have to be home to monitor my flag! Valentines Day? Well... It's business time.

    See, there's a perfectly good reason to have off on ALL the holidays.

  9. #9
    Cyburbian illinoisplanner's avatar
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    Yeah, realizing that the workplace only has like 6 major holidays is kind of a bummer.

    I think having the following standard paid holidays would be better. In addition, if the holiday fell on a weekend, you would get the Friday before off or the Monday after:
    New Year's Day
    Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
    Monday after the Super Bowl (half-day - off in AM only)
    Valentine's Day (half-day - off in PM only)
    President's Day
    St. Patrick's Day
    Good Friday
    Memorial Day
    Independence Day
    Labor Day
    Columbus Day
    Halloween (half-day - off in PM only)
    Election Day (half-day - off in AM only)
    Three Days for Thanksgiving (Wed, Thur, Fri)
    Three Days for Christmas (24, 25, 26)
    New Year's Eve

    So, that's 18 days total. Not too bad.

    I mean, isn't it standard to get like a month or two off in Europe?

  10. #10
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by illinoisplanner View post
    Yeah, realizing that the workplace only has like 6 major holidays is kind of a bummer.

    I think having the following standard paid holidays would be better. In addition, if the holiday fell on a weekend, you would get the Friday before off or the Monday after:
    New Year's Day
    Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
    Monday after the Super Bowl (half-day - off in AM only)
    Valentine's Day (half-day - off in PM only)
    President's Day
    St. Patrick's Day
    Good Friday
    Memorial Day
    Independence Day
    Labor Day
    Columbus Day
    Halloween (half-day - off in PM only)
    Election Day (half-day - off in AM only)
    Three Days for Thanksgiving (Wed, Thur, Fri)
    Three Days for Christmas (24, 25, 26)
    New Year's Eve

    So, that's 18 days total. Not too bad.

    I mean, isn't it standard to get like a month or two off in Europe?
    You didn't state the reasons for your dates/times but they appear to be for practical reasons. For instance the Wednesday before Thanksgiving is when you need to start a lot of the cooking, and the day after Christmas is when you wanna play with your presents (and maybe even watch the kiddies play with theirs) and clean up all the wrapping paper and get things organized after the Big Mess. Take off early on Halloween so the kids can get their costumes on and start their Trick or treating earlier. The morning after Superbowl Sunday should of course devoted to Alka Seltzer and not work....which raises the question why not make March 18th the holiday instead of the St. Patty's Day itself - I mean there's plenty of time to get your crunk on after 5:00 on the 17th, you NEED the time on the 18th to.....contemplate Irish thoughts.

    One thing the Germans do right and I wished we saw more of here are good Oktoberfest celebrations. That time around the end of September and the beginning of October is usually just right weatherwise for some outdoor fun - usually not too hot and not too cool. But unless you're in a particularly German area in the midwest chances are you've probably never been to one. Y'all are missing out on some good times.

    Now doesn't this look like fun? And look at the size of those mugs!
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

  11. #11
    Cyburbian CJC's avatar
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    There definitely is a lack of good drinking holidays - that's why I fully support lifting St. Patty's Day and Cinco de Mayo to full "day-off" status - and in both cases, it should be the day after that is the day off. And as mentioned above, a day or two for Oktoberfest is a must as well. Mardi Gras/Carnaval should be celebrated nationwide too. Am I missing any?

  12. #12
    Cyburbian Plus
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    I like having both Primary and General Election day off as holidays.
    I usually take the monday before off as vacation day so - 4 day weekend.

    I know that RJ would approve.
    Oddball
    Why don't you knock it off with them negative waves?
    Why don't you dig how beautiful it is out here?
    Why don't you say something righteous and hopeful for a change?
    From Kelly's Heroes (1970)


    Are you sure you're not hurt ?
    No. Just some parts wake up faster than others.
    Broke parts take a little longer, though.
    From Electric Horseman (1979)

  13. #13
    Cyburbian illinoisplanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    You didn't state the reasons for your dates/times but they appear to be for practical reasons. For instance the Wednesday before Thanksgiving is when you need to start a lot of the cooking, and the day after Christmas is when you wanna play with your presents (and maybe even watch the kiddies play with theirs) and clean up all the wrapping paper and get things organized after the Big Mess. Take off early on Halloween so the kids can get their costumes on and start their Trick or treating earlier. The morning after Superbowl Sunday should of course devoted to Alka Seltzer and not work....which raises the question why not make March 18th the holiday instead of the St. Patty's Day itself - I mean there's plenty of time to get your crunk on after 5:00 on the 17th, you NEED the time on the 18th to.....contemplate Irish thoughts.

    One thing the Germans do right and I wished we saw more of here are good Oktoberfest celebrations. That time around the end of September and the beginning of October is usually just right weatherwise for some outdoor fun - usually not too hot and not too cool. But unless you're in a particularly German area in the midwest chances are you've probably never been to one. Y'all are missing out on some good times.
    Yeah, I'm sorry I should have gone into greater depth. I just based it more off of a combo of practicality (Election Day, Valentine's, Halloween) as well as giving everyone the holidays the banks and schools get off (MLK, Presidents, Columbus).

    One thing is that there's not a whole lot of holidays in the summer, but I figure people can use their vacation days here, and not have to waste them all during the holiday season.

    As far as Oktoberfest, you mentioned the whole nice weather thing. As far as fall-time drinking goes, I think tailgating at football games has sort of become the American equivalent. But I do agree that an actual large-scale Oktoberfest should exist. Set aside a specific day or two. There are so many people of German ancestry in America, and I figure if we can celebrate the Irish and their drinking (St. Patrick's), we should celebrate the Germans as well.

    I am noticing a resurgence of interest in Oktoberfest though. So I could definitely see more festivals taking place. I still think a holiday is a long way off though. But maybe we could incorporate it with Columbus Day or something?

  14. #14
         
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    Oh, and would I be far off by suggesting folks in the UK get cheated with Halloween and Guy Fawkes Day being so close to each other? Both provide lots of autumnal amusement...but are less than a week apart!
    They're not really classed as a 'holiday' over here, just a couple of days to go and watch some fireworks being let off and kids smash up the neighbourhood (apply largely to both days). I'm resenting the 'Americanisation' of our Halloween, thansk to the supermarkets seeing another opportunity to squeeze us for cash...BAH HUMBUG. And don't get me started on bloody Valentine's Day.

    Quote Originally posted by illinoisplanner View post
    Yeah, realizing that the workplace only has like 6 major holidays is kind of a bummer.

    I think having the following standard paid holidays would be better. In addition, if the holiday fell on a weekend, you would get the Friday before off or the Monday after:
    New Year's Day
    Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
    Monday after the Super Bowl (half-day - off in AM only)
    Valentine's Day (half-day - off in PM only)
    President's Day
    St. Patrick's Day
    Good Friday
    Memorial Day
    Independence Day
    Labor Day
    Columbus Day
    Halloween (half-day - off in PM only)
    Election Day (half-day - off in AM only)
    Three Days for Thanksgiving (Wed, Thur, Fri)
    Three Days for Christmas (24, 25, 26)
    New Year's Eve

    So, that's 18 days total. Not too bad.

    I mean, isn't it standard to get like a month or two off in Europe?
    We have the following public holidays in the UK: New Years Day, Good Friday, Easter Monday, May Day, Spring Bank Holiday, August Bank Holiday, Christmas Day and Boxing Day. So that's 8 public holidays plus 23/24 days (I forget) annual leave as part of legislation. Every year as it clicks round there's a call for St. George's Day to be made a Bank Holiday too (23rd April), seeing as he's the national saint and all that.

  15. #15
    Cyburbian Plus
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    Off-topic:
    Quote Originally posted by HarryFossettsHat View post
    I'm resenting the 'Americanisation' of our Halloween, thansk to the supermarkets seeing another opportunity to squeeze us for cash...BAH HUMBUG. And don't get me started on bloody Valentine's Day.
    You are in good company with several Cyburbians on the over commercialization of certain holidays. We have had a few threads or postings about this.
    Oddball
    Why don't you knock it off with them negative waves?
    Why don't you dig how beautiful it is out here?
    Why don't you say something righteous and hopeful for a change?
    From Kelly's Heroes (1970)


    Are you sure you're not hurt ?
    No. Just some parts wake up faster than others.
    Broke parts take a little longer, though.
    From Electric Horseman (1979)

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally posted by KSharpe View post
    What in the hell is Sweetest Day?? I've never heard of this holiday, and am therefore angry about the myriad gifts I've missed extorting from my husband.
    I'd never heard of it until a year ago. My understanding is that it is a pseudo holiday invented by candy makers so they could sell candy. You're supposed to give sweets, gifts, etc. to the special people in your life: "the sick, aged and orphaned, [and] also friends, relatives and associates whose helpfulness and kindness we have enjoyed." Look it up on wikipedia or google it, there's more info there.

    It's kind of stupid, IMHO. But, if you're interested in extorting gifts from your loved ones, it's on October 20, just days away.

  17. #17
    Cyburbian ofos's avatar
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    As a veteran, it's alway p*ssed me off that there's a holiday to recognize us and no provision that veterans should get the day off. I've worked at more places that gave me my birthday off than recognized Veteran's Day.
    “Death comes when memories of the past exceed the vision for the future.”

  18. #18
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by illinoisplanner View post
    I do agree that an actual large-scale Oktoberfest should exist. Set aside a specific day or two. There are so many people of German ancestry in America, and I figure if we can celebrate the Irish and their drinking (St. Patrick's), we should celebrate the Germans as well.
    Suddenly the idea of hyphenated-Americans doesn't sound so bad. I'm thinking a massive Polish/Russian Vodka fest should also be observed, as well as a Greek ouzo fest, an Italian grappa observance, and of course a Mexican pulque (fermented cactus sap) celebration is much needed......
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

  19. #19
    Cyburbian Mud Princess's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by ofos View post
    As a veteran, it's alway p*ssed me off that there's a holiday to recognize us and no provision that veterans should get the day off. I've worked at more places that gave me my birthday off than recognized Veteran's Day, when he has to work.
    My husband completely agrees with you. I have to hear about it every Veteran's Day.

    Actually I would add that many people don't get a lot of so-called holidays off. Sure, you're practically guaranteed every holiday (Columbus Day, Election Day, Good Friday...) off if you work in the public sector, but that's about it.

    And what about people who are forced to work even on national holidays? I'm not talking about emergency personnel -- obviously, we need ERs and fire and police departments to be staffed. But remember when no stores were open on Christmas or New Year's? People should not have to run a cash register on those days. They should be home with their families.

  20. #20
    NIMBY asshatterer Plus Richmond Jake's avatar
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    Who here knows today is Boss's Day? I didn't know until I got a card from staff. I should have taken the day off. And on a Wednesday?

  21. #21
    Cyburbian Veloise's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by CJC View post
    ... Mardi Gras/Carnaval should be celebrated nationwide too. ...
    nola.com has a clickable petition that you can sign to help implement this. It's seen as support for the Katrina-affected region.
    http://www.nola.com/mardigras/petiti.../petition.html

  22. #22
    Cyburbian Emeritus Bear Up North's avatar
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    And In the Real World...

    The list of 18 holidays submitted by illinoisplanner would get many a "humfph" in the boardrooms of America and many a "high five" in the union offices of America. I would ask, "Who is going to pay for all of these days of 'no work'?"

    Yeah.....the consumer, eventually......because it really does roll down hill.....

    Most smaller corporations (less than a billion dollars $ in sales per/year) usually have 7-10 paid holidays per/year. Larger companies, often tied-into union contracts, go up to the range of 12-15 holidays.

    Sure, there are some exceptions.

    My distribution center has a package that has 8 paid holidays......New Year's Day, Memorial Day, July 4th, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, the day after Thanksgiving, Christmas, and a pair of half-days before Christmas and on New Year's Eve.

    Trust me on this: When those dudes are in the boardrooms discussing the addition of holidays (for example, at a company doing 20 million dollars $ in sales) they will ask how the lost revenue for the additional holidays will be made up.....without increasing the size of their labor pool. The example company above needs to somehow manufacture (or distribute or retail sell) about 80 grand $$$$$$$$ for each additional holiday.

    How do you do this? You can mix and match the following.....raise prices, cut benefits in other areas, reduce staff deemed "frosting", automate the business processes (requiring capital investment and eventually reducing labor per/unit).
    _____

    Sliding back to the topic of "poor holiday" planning.....

    If I was in a boardroom and decided to take a little "frosting" off my compensation and use it to build some corporate good feelings, I would add a day or two in the time period between New Year's Day and Memorial Day.

    Bear
    Occupy Cyburbia!

  23. #23
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Finished with Labor Day. Summer is unofficially over. Ya. Hoo.

    Okay, if you're looking for examples of poor holiday planning look no further than Labor Day. True, a bad day off is better than a good day at work, but that still won't stop us from kvetching all the same.

    What is the deal with Monday holidays? They fly in the face of all reason. If a three day weekend is what the world wants then wouldn't taking Friday off make more sense? Let's be candid here - three day weekends are the stuff of broken dreams; they dangle the promise of extra fun in the sun before our eyes but deliver it in disappointingly short intervals. Too many beers at the lake on Monday and before you know it - POOF - it's all over and you're back to the daily grind nursing a hangover and staring at a pile of work.

    My solution - offer more four day holidays. Thanksgiving has it right. The key is to sate all those impulses for excess early on; by Sunday one is of a sufficiently sober, dour, serious disposition and quite prepared to stolidly return to the daily grind older and wiser.
    Last edited by Maister; 08 Sep 2009 at 9:50 AM.

  24. #24
    OH....IO Hink's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    My solution - offer more four day holidays. Thanksgiving has it right. The key is to sate all those impulses for excess early on; by Sunday one is of a sufficiently sober, dour, serious disposition and quite prepared to stolidly return to the daily grind older and wiser.
    The Federal Government gives Military Contractors "Family days" before holidays. They figure that if you are going to travel for a holiday you should be able to leave early on the Friday before to get there. Pretty logical to me. So they make you work a forth of a day (2 hours) and then can go and start your long weekend.

    Our country needs to start looking at more efficient ways to make workers happy (i.e. four day work weeks, more days off, less hours). Or we can just keep pushing on like we are which is what will happen.

    My problem with random three day weekends is that I never remember that they exist until it is upon me. A great example is Columbus Day. I get it off. But I never remember that I get it off. Also, my wife doesn't get it off, so it is really pointless for me. I would rather just get more vacation or personal days. Let's not pretend that we care about Columbus for a day.
    A common mistake people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools. -Douglas Adams

  25. #25
    Cyburbian ofos's avatar
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    Every month with more than 28 days should have the excess days recognized as holidays. Leap year would have one additional holiday as a result, I mean who the heck decided that February should have an extra day? That's a month that everybody just wants to end as quickly as possible.
    “Death comes when memories of the past exceed the vision for the future.”

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