September Holidays, Ranked

I can’t believe it’s September already, folks. We won. We beat the heat, and the beach traffic, and we arrived at the promised land: fall in New England. Now we can get ready for leaf peeping, the only sort of peeping that is generally accepted by society.

When I was first called to this holiday-ranking work, I thought it was clear that some holidays were better than others. With an open mind and heart, however, I’ve grown to see that each holiday brings something special to the table, and that ranking them is truly an exercise in absurdity.

Nah, I’m just kidding. Some are better than others and it’s my divine purpose to let y’all know. So let’s get down to business. And by the way, September is Baby Safety Month, so find something else to juggle until October, alright?

5. National Dog Walker Appreciation Day: September 8

Sorry-not-sorry, I feel like there are so many other professions that deserve an appreciation day before the dog walkers. First, it’s such a niche group. It’s not “Pet Care Industry” Day or “World Veterinary Day” (that’s in April), it’s just the dog walkers. Second, most people walk their own dogs because we aren’t fancy enough to pay for a dog walker — we may as well be celebrating “National Butler Day.” Hats off to the kids starting small dog-walker businesses and people who just like walking dogs, but let’s give this holiday to truly deserving people. I’d recommend “National Assistant Editor Day.”  

4. Labor Day: September 5

Put away the white clothes, folks, Labor Day is here.

In the late 1800s, Grover Cleveland was in a bad spot. He had just authorized a military response to the Pullman Strike, one of the biggest strikes in American history, and the military ended up firing into a crowd of people and killing an estimated 30. All this was because the railroad workers had their wages cut and many were facing starvation.

To mollify labor leaders, Cleveland was convinced to make a federal observance of the labor movement. But which day should he choose: the first Monday in September, proposed for its good weather for street parades and picnics? Or May 1, the anniversary of the Haymarket Affair, when a Chicago protest advocated for an eight-hour workday and was met with vicious police violence, emboldening socialists and anarchists around the globe? Ol’ Cleve went with the picnics. And even that was just for federal employees — to get the day off for everyone else, union members had to — you guessed it — strike.

May 1 is still acknowledged as International Workers’ Day, though! Just not a federal holiday.

3. National Milkshake Day: September 11

Honestly, I feel bad for the ardent supporters of National Milkshake Day. Seems like a cool holiday, but it falls on September 11. I highly, highly doubt we are going to get diners and dessert places to run milkshake specials on the day of the attack on the World Trade Center. We may want to shake things up by changing the day — what is everyone doing on the 12?  

2. Sept 25 – 27 Rosh Hashanah:

It’s the new year! Shanah tovah! …if you follow the Hebrew calendar, that is. Rosh Hashana is the first of the High Holidays, and it’s both joyful and serious: it’s a Jewish celebration of the creation of the world, but also a time for repentance, reflection on what we did wrong last year and figuring out how to avoid doing it again. Listen for the sound of the shofar, a musical instrument made from the horn of a ram, which is used to signify the importance of the day. And if you like food, you’re in luck — apples and challah bread dipped in honey portend a sweet new year.

1. September 19: Talk like a Pirate Day

Talk about the most underrated holiday in the business. National Talk Like A Pirate Day definitely steals the top spot in September holidays. If I were President, I’d make this mandatory. I want to see everything conducted in pirate speak for the whole day: business negotiations, medical diagnoses and funeral rites. I’d also make everyone call money “doubloons,” make piracy legal (digital only, cue that 90s anti-piracy ad) and require that anyone who wasn’t already wearing an eye-patch wear one over their right eye. Then I’d make those who already had one on their right eye wear one on their left eye. Aye, matey, it’d be absolute chaos and I would probably get run out of town. But at least I’d never be accused of not taking this top-tier national holiday seriously.