Not So Good Friday

When I lived in the UK, I always looked forward to the double bank holiday weekend around Easter Sunday. In case you are wondering what a “bank holiday” is, it is a public holiday in the UK, so called because the banks close, as do most offices. Some bank holidays occur on religious or national holidays, such as Christmas or New Year’s Day, whereas other bank holidays don’t seem to represent any “holiday” at all – the first Monday in May, for example, is always the “early May bank holiday” and the last Monday in May is the “spring bank holiday.” Nobody can explain what the “holiday” actually is, but nobody cares, because it’s a day off.

But of course it’s clear what Easter Sunday celebrates (the arrival of the Easter bunny, right?), and in the UK, Easter is always a four day weekend, because Good Friday (the Friday preceding Easter Sunday) and East Monday (the Monday after Easter Sunday) are both bank holidays. So, nearly everyone takes time off work and many people go away for the weekend or visit their families. Likewise in Canada, Good Friday is a federal statutory holiday.

NOT SO IN THE U.S. of A., where neither Good Friday nor Easter Monday are federal holidays. Office workers continue to type away in their cubicles, postal workers continue to deliver mail, bank clerks continue to process checks, and federal and state government workers continue to do whatever it is federal and state government workers do (although I read online that apparently some states do celebrate it as a state holiday). And of course every supermarket and retail establishments remains open, lest observant Americans be prevented from engaging in the holiest of activities, shopping for Easter candy and baskets.

Easter Sunday is on a Sunday, and Sunday is already your day off, so what more do you want? Now get back to work.



1 Comment

Filed under Holiday

One response to “Not So Good Friday

  1. david fahrland

    It’s a strange, strange world indeed. In England, which is very agnostic, they have the whole holy weekend off … while in America, which is religious, its not Politically Correct to celebrate any religious holiday (Except Christmas which has been completely commercialized anyway). Go figure.
    Washington politics at work here taking the constitution literally.

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