I propose a better, more honest, more American holiday, to be celebrated the Saturday after Thanksgiving: Resentment Day.
(Why Saturday? Because that's the day you really start to resent leftover turkey.)
If you studied hard for your MA and now must work extra hours at Wal-Mart to pay off your student loans, Resentment Day is your day. If you find yourself in your fifties working for some twerp in his twenties who treats you like a dullard, Resentment Day is your day. If every film, novel, painting and pop song leaves you convinced that you could do better, Resentment Day is your day. If you won't ride a rollercoaster because you know that if you spent five minutes studying the plans for the thing you'd find the fatal engineering flaw, Resentment Day is your day.
If you're pissed off at Kim Kardashian and Paris Hilton and every other celebrity who has done nothing to earn their celebrity, Resentment Day is your day. If you are pissed off at celebrities who (unlike you) actually do have a few genuine accomplishments under their belts, Resentment Day is your day.
If you coulda been a contenduh, Resentment Day is your day.
If you're infuriated by members of your family -- the thanaterotic teenaged girl, the sullen son, the spouse who seems always on the edge of a violent outburst, the uncle who can't stop talking about his wealth and accomplishments, the parent who always makes you feel five years old -- Resentment Day is your day.
If absolutely nothing in the realm of politics gives you any reason for cheer or approval, Resentment Day is your day. If you wake up every day seething at Barack Obama -- or at the Republicans who hope to unseat Obama -- or both -- or all -- Resentment Day is your day.
If you scoff at conspiracy theories yet secretly presume that "They" really are out to get you, Resentment Day is your day.
If you want to bomb France, Resentment Day is your day.
If life seems too short, Resentment Day is your day. If life seems too long, Resentment Day is your day.
If history is a nightmare from which you seek to escape, Resentment Day is your day. If the present is a nightmare from which you try to escape by reading about the "good old days," Resentment Day is your day.
If you think that every major piece of architecture erected since 1947 was constructed just to annoy you, Resentment Day is your day.
Holiday fun. You're probably wondering how you too can get in on the Resentment Day festivities. Just what is it that you are supposed to do on this occasion?
Well, first and foremost, you and your despised relatives can partake of the traditional Resentment Day meal. It's a stew, simmered for several hours in your own juices, delicately flavored with bile and vitriol. Dinnertime conversation must include recrimination and guilt. If someone leaves the table in tears, you have achieved a successful Resentment Day. If that same person commits suicide, consider it the best Resentment Day ever. (But always remember that it's all your fault.)
Don't forget to send out your Resentment Day cards. These can be unsigned, unaddressed post cards bearing the words "I know what you did." Email will work, as long as you know how to disguise your own address.
Alternatively, you can send out cards with pictures of Schopenhauer, along with appropriate quotations:
After your death you will be what you were before your birth.
Almost all of our sorrows spring out of our relations with other people.
Because people have no thoughts to deal in, they deal cards, and try and win one another's money. Idiots!
If a book and a head collide and a hollow sound results, is it the fault of the book?
Love is a snowmobile racing across the tundra and then suddenly it flips over, pinning you underneath. At night, the ice weasels come. (Incorrectly attributed to Nietzsche.)The basic Resentment Day activity is to make someone's life miserable -- including and especially your own. Call a long-lost friend and remind him of money owed. Tell your sister or father what you really think.
The internet carries plenty of opportunity for Resentment Day fun. Wander from site to site, insulting both posters and commenters. Stir up disagreements over tiny issues, especially issues of grammar. If any website owner posts a picture of himself or herself, do not hesitate to critique what you see. Find one of those erotic blogs where some insecure young lady brags about her prowess as a fellatrice; make her feel like an unlovable hag. Accuse writers of being anti-Semitic or anti-Islamic, using the flimsiest of pretexts. Make innocuous observations that sound inflammatory -- such as: "The president is black!" or "There are lots of Jews in Hollywood!" Then sit back and watch the fun.
Go to a dumbass fanboy website and remind everyone there that Greedo shot first. Then make them feel idiotic for treating 10 frames of film as the single most important event in the history of civilization.
Submit a piece to Rigorous Intuition or Prison Planet in which you reveal that Joseph Cannon is a covert operative working for the CIA/Illuminati/Skull and Bones.
In short: Inflate the hate. That's the Resentment Day way.
Remember: Resentment is of enormous value. If man did not envy the birds, he would never have flown.
What's that? You say that this holiday is unnecessary? You say that most Americans treat every day as Resentment Day?
Typical. You would say that. There you go again, spoiling another Resentment Day. I hope you're happy.