Last week we celebrated Labor Day, which is a very important holiday based around… um, something important enough to get us a three day weekend. Hopefully, you were able to spend it swimming, barbecuing, drinking beer or watching race highlights from the weekend.
Not me. Due to a massive lapse in judgment, I signed up to work on Labor Day. As I sat in my lonely cubicle, I got to thinking about holidays and why we have them. There are holidays that mark significant days in a nation's history, birthdays of famous figures, religious events and military victories.
The problem is, there's no holiday for the gearheads, the car guys and gals, the hoons, and the Jalops. There's no holiday for us, man! I think that needs to change.
I drafted a series of events, causes and people that I think deserve holidays of their own, and I've submitted them to my congressman in hopes that they will become full-fledged, duly recognized reasons not to go to work. You should do the same. Join me in supporting the gearhead holidays!
Feel free to add your own ideas in the comments below.
Photo credit Shutterstock/JoshDobson
National Saab Hoonage and Rememberance Day
Date: Dec. 19
Of all the car companies that fell victim to the Carpocalypse, Saab is perhaps the one we will miss the most. Even when they were reduced to selling rebadged WRXs and Envoys, the Swedish company always made interesting cars and did their own thing. Saab's long history of innovation and uniqueness must not be forgotten, and that's why it deserves its own holiday.
How it's celebrated: Build a car out of some old aircraft parts. Re-wire your ignition so that it's next to your shifter. Go off-roading. Act generally superior to BMW owners. Strap a turbo to something. Go to IKEA with your friends, eat the meatballs and call it a "Saabecue."
Photo credit firstname.lastname@example.org
The Feast Of St. Senna
Date: March 21
Ayrton Senna was one of the greatest drivers to ever compete in Formula 1. His career has rightfully blossomed into the stuff of legend. In addition, his memory has fueled the Instituto Ayrton Senna, which has raised millions of dollars to educate poor kids in Brazil. He's a national hero in his home country, so why shouldn't we take a day off work to show him some love everywhere else?
How it's celebrated: Go driving in the rain. Get on Cars.com and look around for an NSX. If you have the means, buy one. Make all your friends watch Senna, but stop talking to them if they didn't like it. Start an intense rivalry with a Frenchman that later blossoms into a friendship based on mutual respect and admiration.
Photo credit senna.org.br
Henry Ford Day
Date: July 30
Is is said that Henry Ford is the man who got the world motoring. He may not have invented the car, but he found a way to build cars so that nearly everyone could afford one. But in addition to being one of the most important figures in automotive history, he was also kind of a psychopath, as well as an anti-Semite and a ruthless power-monger. No one's perfect, I guess. Still, Ford's contributions are great enough that his life should get us a holiday.
How it's celebrated: Find a more efficient way to do something. Build a car, then make it for nearly 20 years but refuse to believe it has become obsolete. Be a massive and unrepentant asshole to everyone, most especially your own children.
Photo credit Cea
Stick Shift Evangelism Day
Date: Sept. 15
The Bible says that after Jesus was resurrected, he told his followers to go forth, preach to others and spread his teachings across all nations. You love manual transmissions and so do I, but there are too many other folks who haven't received the good word. That's why we should have a day set aside for spreading the gospel of stick. Trust me — people will be better for it when they're saved from the hell of driving automatics.
How it's celebrated: Educate people about the Ten Commandments. Stand on a street corner screaming about better car control and fuel economy. Leave notes on parked cars telling their owners that life is better with a manual. Look inside other people's cars; if they have an automatic, judge them. At the very least, teach someone to drive stick.
Photo credit Shutterstock
Dany Bahar Excellence Day
Date: April 1
‘Round these parts, we aren't the biggest fans of deposed Lotus chief Dany Bahar. And why would we be? Not only was the guy clueless, he also implemented a plan that would have packed one of the most storied car companies with a bunch of fat, bloated cars that no one wanted.
But while he was in charge of Lotus, Bahar lived a pretty sweet lifestyle that included having a giant house and kicking it with Brian May and various Baldwins. That's why a holiday built around his life would be a lot of fun, even if it ends badly for you.
How it's celebrated: Eat way too much and gain a ton of weight. Get fired from your job. Hang out with rock stars. Spend too much money. Make generally bad decisions. Completely fail to understand the circumstances in which you find yourself.