Do you remember back when we only had a few ‘Days’? There was Christmas Day of course, followed by Boxing Day, all after the sombre mood of Armistice Day, in November. My own Birthday, always a cause for celebration, then Mother’s Day, followed by Father’s Day. Good Friday qualified as a Day, as did Easter Monday, and Bank Holiday Monday, in August. That was about it at the time.
Then I noticed that they were trying to sneak in ‘Grandparents’ Day’, from America. I avoided that one, as after all, enough was enough. But it was only the start of an avalanche of ‘Days’. As I got older, I read about International Women’s Day, and May Day, to celebrate workers around the world. I thought, ‘OK, that’s enough.’ I was wrong. The Internet arrived.
There was an explosion of ‘Days’, accelerated by the world-wide web. Most of these were actually good ideas, and raised money for charity. Aids Awareness Day, Mental Health Day, Alzheimer’s Day, and so on. You get the idea. Support Our Troops Day, (once we started to become involved in foreign conflicts once again) was one of many more that were instigated to embrace good causes.
But then it got out of hand. Circulated via social media, we soon had such things as ‘Stroke Your Pet Day’, (who doesn’t stroke their pet?) ‘Adopt A Hedgehog Day’, ‘Throw a Sickie Day’, ‘Cuddle A Vagrant Day’, and many more too numerous to mention. Once I started blogging, I noticed a trend towards sub-division of days. ‘Mental Health Awareness Day’ was no longer enough. That had to be split into ‘Bipolar Day’, ‘ADHD Day’, ‘Manic Depression Day’, and on and on. Animal days followed suit, with ‘Save A Tiger Day’, ‘Adopt A Panda Day’, and as many as you can possibly imagine.
Then came Climate Change, and Recycling. Soon, I was inundated with yet more days. ‘Save The Icecaps Day’, ‘Polar Bear Day’, ‘Conserve Your Local Wetland Day’ and possibly hundreds more. ‘Ride Your Bike To Work Day’, ‘Do Fifty Press-ups Day’, my head was spinning. If I thought that was it, I was sadly mistaken. Think of a day, any day you like, and it is taken by something. It will be ‘—–Day’, be certain of that. ‘Poetry Day’, ‘Literature Day’, ‘Singing Day’, and ‘Feed Someone Day’. They have all been thought of. Believe me, there is nothing left. Days have had to be claimed by more than one of those ‘—– Day’, and they are now competing for attention like pups in a box. (Oh, ‘Adopt A Puppy Day’, I almost forgot.)
When the days were overrun, they migrated into months. ‘World Literacy Month’, ‘World Water Aid Month’, ‘Bake A Cake Month’, and ‘Learn A New Skill Month’. Think of anything, and it has a month, believe me. There are even years of this stuff. ‘City of Culture for —-‘ (year). Good luck with trying to think up 365 things to give the impression that your city is remotely cultural. Not only that, you will be competing with 365 (or 366 in a leap year) other things that the ‘world’ is celebrating, alongside many months of ‘this and that’ going on all around your cultural ‘hub’.
When will enough ever be enough, I wonder?
My own non-scientific research has discovered that each year is already ‘full’. There are no days left, and these ‘events’ are now sharing days, marching on relentlessly, driven by Facebook, Twitter, and Bloggers. Not only are there far too many, some of them trite in the extreme, but there is just no space left for ‘National Cut Your Pet’s Toenails Day’, or ‘National Stroke A Rabbit Day’. I am worn out, ‘Dayed’ out, and bewildered by the choices on offer.
Something’s got to give, or we are going to need a lot more days.