Tuesday, May 01, 2018


It's May 1, also known as May Day.  In the 1800s, the date was chosen by socialists and communist to celebrate workers.

Considering the misery created by communism, would a better day for them to celebrate workers be April 1?

May 1 is also for other celebrations, including a traditional spring festival.  You've heard of dancing around the maypole, after all. (Actually, I've never danced around a maypole.  I've never even seen a maypole in person.  I bet the most-seen maypole dancing ever is on the credits to The Odd Couple sitcom.)

Apparently the day is also special in Hawaii.  They consider May Day to be Lei Day.  That I can understand.


Anonymous Lawrence King said...

There aren't many holidays that have generated counter-holidays, but this one has generated two:

Labor Day. Technically this came first: in 1882, a New York labor union proposed celebrating labor on the first Monday of September, but the proposal was initially ignored. Then on May 1, 1886, the AFL launched a strike that culminated in the Haymarket massacre, which led to May 1 becoming a special anniversary for the radical labor movement, so President Cleveland promoted the September Labor Day as a peaceful alternative, and it became a federal holiday in 1894.

Feast of Saint Joseph the Worker. Saint Joseph's primary feast day is March 19, and he has always been the patron saint of workingmen [sorry, "workers"]. In 1955, with Commmunism in charge of a third of the planet (and doing well in Italian elections), the Catholic Church dedicated May 1 to St. Joseph under the title "Saint Joseph the Worker" to celebrate the dignity of labor without the revolutionary aspects.

6:09 PM, May 01, 2018  
Blogger New England Guy said...

Interestingly enough. I was traveling and wound up in Munich on this May 1st as part of a very long layover. I hadn't appreciated the fact until I took my quick morning walking tour Tuesday morning and found most of the shops closed and kept running into parades. The music was pretty good and there were some clever costumes. Somewhat reflexively I guess, I did have some feelings of unease seeing chanting and marching in Munich with a huge Polizei presence though. (I don't speak German so I really don't know what they were saying- the only English sign I did see said "Fight Racism. Abolish Sexism. Smash Capitalism."- its good to have clear goals I guess).

Enjoyed the State Museum afterwards- while they had good exhibits about the birth of national socialism, expropriation of Jewish property (by the museum in the 30s and 40s) and a history of Munich, the one that had the most effect was on a history of puppetry and fairground exhibits on the top floor. I had nightmares about those laughing clowns this week.

4:05 AM, May 03, 2018  
Blogger LAGuy said...

No racism, sexism or capitalism? Well, two out of three ain't bad.

Good thing you weren't in France, where there was some serious May Day violence.

Just by chance, I've been watching a bunch of videos coming from Germany lately. In particular, I've watched stuff from Don't Trust The Rabbit and Wanted Adventure.

9:13 AM, May 03, 2018  

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