useless holidays

Happy B.C. day, Vancouverites. Canada seems to be doing almost as well as Holland at creating completely pointless holidays. But let me tell you why Holland still wins.

Here are my favorite useless holidays in Holland:

    • Koninginnedag (Queensday), of course. Every April 30, the country dresses itself in orange and a) has a huge yard sale of all the crap they can find in their houses and b) goes into the streets and gets extraordinarily drunk. Why? It’s the Queen’s birthday… but not this one, the queen before this one. I am now going to refer you to the video below.
    • Pinksterdag. This has some religious significance, and I’d be okay with that, if they didn’t insist on adding a SECOND DAY on top of it. Tweede Pinksterdag. It’s not bloody Easter, people.
    • Ascension Day (Hemelvaartsdag). Again, something about the final time Jesus went to heaven or something. People celebrate this. Well, not people. The shops. They close. (See video.) I mean, this must be the most useless holiday of them all. Ascension?! Really? It’s not enough to celebrate that Jesus was born, that he died, that he rose from the dead, and whatever Pinksterdag celebrates? We need to add an extra day of holidays just for him going to heaven for real this time?
    • Sinterklaas. This is a pre-Christmas holiday that happens on December 5th. I can’t really do it justice here, to be honest, but it involves a story about Sinterklaas (something like Santa Claus) coming to Holland on a ship from Spain with his, um, chimney-darkened helpers. He brings presents. There is usually a parade in every city in which Santa Claus rides through the streets with these helpers, who are in blackface. Yeah. There’s a reason this festival was banned when they tried to do it in Vancouver last year. Actually, maybe their site has a better explanation of this holiday. The good thing about it is they eat delicious cookies and giant chocolate initials of their names.

And for a nice summary of the above… No mention of useless holidays would be complete without a reminder of the shops being closed and this brilliant video:

What’s your favorite pointless holiday?

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About Varia

Traveler, writer.
This entry was posted in Culture Shock and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to useless holidays

  1. Jibb says:

    I can’t wait for Family Day in February! Right around Vday too! HA.

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