Saturday, September 16, 2006

Hail to the Drunken Bastard

A little while ago, a friend of mine got into a minor altercation with some drunken bastard in the parking lot of an inner-city pool hall. Unfortunately, there wasn't much he could do about it since it happened to be Drunken Bastard Day.

In case you grew up somewhere other than the United States, Drunken Bastard Day is a holiday celebrated on the last Friday of every August. It's not an official holiday, so banks and government offices stay open and the mail gets delivered. It's what we call a "Hallmark Holiday" (after the Hallmark Greeting Card company), sort of like Mother's Day and Valentine's Day -- holidays that have been observed throughout the country for years, but without benefit of any official governmental recognition.

I don't remember when people started celebrating Drunken Bastard day -- all I remember is that one year nobody was celebrating it and the next year everyone was. I was a little kid back then, so I don't know the exact year. I remember being vaguely aware of it and wondering what the big deal was, but in retrospect, I guess I didn't really understand its importance.

Of course, there was a lot I didn't understand back then. For example, in 1958 they took down all the flags with 48 stars and put up flags with 49 stars. Then, the following year, they took down all the flags with 49 stars and put up flags with 50 stars. I didn't know it was because we made Alaska a state in 1958 and Hawaii a state in 1959 -- I just figured that every year, they took down all the old flags and put up new ones with an additional star.

I hardly ever drink, but a friend of mine got me a Drunken Bastard Day card as a joke this year. I thought the card was kind of cute, so I'll share the poem with you, even though doing so may be in violation of current United States copyright laws.

You slur all your words.
You stumble and fall.
You get into fights
outside the pool hall.
You're always in trouble.
It hurts when you think.
But stop by the bar
and I'll buy you a drink.

Happy Drunken Bastard Day.

In closing, I'd like to wish a happy (belated) Drunken Bastard Day to all of my faithful readers, and may the spirit of Drunken Bastard Day stay with you throughout the entire year.