Part of me loves Monday holidays like Memorial Day and Labor Day. Another part of me loathes Monday holidays and dreads seeing another one approach.

My mixed feelings about three-day weekends mostly comes as a result of the profession I have chosen.

Officially, Monday was a “holiday” for employees of The Independent, and I confess to not having done a lick of work for the newspaper on that day. The same goes for Saturday and Sunday. I took a three-day weekend from newspaper work, and I enjoyed it immensely.

On Saturday, I drove a friend to pick up some food she had ordered, helped my wife in the yard a little bit, but mostly loafed while my wife toiled away in the yard, which is her idea of having a good time. Weird, huh?

On Sunday, I joined the choir in singing a medley of patriotic songs for both services, and in the afternoon, I grilled hamburgers and immensely enjoyed a backyard picnic with new friends.

On Monday, my wife and I spent much of the afternoon enjoying the gospel music at the Bobby F. Crager City Park amphitheater, while our granddaughter went swimming at the Flatwoods pool. All three of us had a great afternoon, and we all have sunburns to prove it.

All in all, it was a great holiday weekend.

Weekends like this one are why I love Monday holidays; it is what I have to do before and after the holiday that makes me loathe them.

While I said Monday was a “holiday” for Independent employees, the only real holiday we get each year is Christmas Day, the only day in which the newspaper does not print. Thus, even though Monday was a holiday, we still published a newspaper that day. That means that some reporters and copy editors and pressroom workers had to work Monday night to prepare Tuesday’s newspaper. Those who worked Monday receive another day off for their “holiday.”

For me, preparing for the holiday really began last week. Normally, Friday is my busiest day of the week. That’s because instead of just doing the opinion page for the next day, I have to turn out the pages for Saturday, Sunday and Monday. Well, to get Monday off, I had to turn out the opinion pages for Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday on Friday. That made for two long work days Thursday and Friday, and I probably worked as many extra hours clearing the way for the holiday as I would have worked on Monday.

That’s why I loathe Monday holidays, and I am glad Independent employees don’t observe most of them. I know some people — especially government employees and teachers like my wife — get Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday, Presidents’ Day and even Columbus Day as Monday holidays, but those are just normal workdays at The Independent. The only Monday holidays are Memorial Day and Labor Day.

As I write this, it is Tuesday afternoon. But it feels like a Monday to me — so much so that I almost forgot that I had a deadline to meet for this column. The rest of the week will be much like any other week — except I will only have four days in which to do my work. Thus, I am dreading the rest of this week.

I don’t want to ever have Presidents’ Day or Columbus Day as a holiday at The Independent. Two Monday holidays a year are about all I can handle.

JOHN CANNON can be reached at or (606) 326-2649.


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