A big family, a reading addiction, and the occasional celebrity scandal are the ingredients of life that create one woman's opinion on just about everything.

Monday, January 19, 2009

The Day Off

My brain runneth over. S'rsly.

Like many Americans I have a day off today, Martin Luther King day. I should be waxing poetic about the contributions Mr. King made to the civil rights movement, but that's not what's on my mind today.

Since I work for a fire department, a public agency, we rightly observe MLK day. GG, otoh, works for an LTL, or freight trucking company. They do not observe MLK so in order to have a day off together he had to take a vacation day. We don't have a particular problem with this since he has far more vacation days than I do, but it bugs me for this reason: a holiday should be a holiday for EVERY one.

Why is it only some people, companies and agencies observe MLK and others don't? Is there a holiday hierarchy? It seems to me when we have this random participation, we, as Americans, lose the importance of the reason for the observance. This has bothered me since we started honoring Mr. King. What's up with the 'holiday optional' business?

If anyone has a reasonable explanation why, I'd sure like to hear it, because as it stands, it makes no sense to me.

GG and I are off to swim now. He's on vacation. I'm on a holiday.

ETA: For all you inquiring minds (like me) and out of a sense of curiosity after Keishon mentioned that each State decides which holidays to observe, I did a little research. (A very little). I found this document which explains a bit about how holidays become holidays.

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13 Comments:

Blogger Jenster said...

I'm trying to make long overdue rounds. I've got no answer for you. Todd has to work today. I thought I was going to work today, but the big guy sent out an email yesterday saying today was an official holiday - office closed. Kids, of course, are out of school. No answers here at all.

Enjoy the swim!

8:27 AM PST  
Blogger Katiebabs a.k.a KB said...

I have wondered this also. Smaller companies I work for never gave me MLK day off, but bigger corporations do. But then again I have never gotten Columbus Day off.

8:37 AM PST  
Blogger Rosie said...

Jenster, does Todd get Columbus Day off? Personally I'd get rid of Columbus Day (it's been more than 500 years!)and celebrate MLK.

Kate, I know! I've worked at smaller places and didn't get MLK or Columbus Day off, but I've also worked places where we got Columbus Day and NOT MLK. Weird.

8:41 AM PST  
Blogger Rosie said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

8:41 AM PST  
Blogger Shon said...

It should be observed for everybody but it is not. I think it is up to each state in how they enforce this (I think). I work today and if I had wanted it off, it would have been a vacation day as well. Keishon

9:41 AM PST  
Blogger Wendy said...

Sorry, no good reason. As a librarian, I pretty much get all the holidays off - although that's not universal. For example, I know some librarians who have to work on Columbus Day.

When I was a wee little Super Librarian, the school system I went to didn't give us all the holidays. So I was in class on Columbus Day, President's Day and MLK Day.

In college? I don't recall. I want to say class was in session. Although since I went to a college with a HUGE Jewish population, we got Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashanah off....which was pretty darn cool.

And for the record - My Man is at the office today.

11:28 AM PST  
Blogger Lori said...

So agree with you, Rosie. I'm off to have lunch with my siblings. I have the day off - holiday. My sister works for the schools. She has a holiday. My brother is at work. We're meeting on his lunch break. Who he's actually doing business with today is beyond me, but there it is.

Seems like if we make a decision to honor somebody, it is not optional whether we honor them. Agreed.

11:39 AM PST  
Blogger Tracy said...

I have no idea why some observe and others don't. Strange. But, happy day off! :)

12:33 PM PST  
Blogger nath said...

Being Canadian, there's no MLK day at all ^_^; However, I don't have any answer for your question...

5:20 PM PST  
Blogger Rosie said...

Keishon, you know I've been meaning to do a little research on this to see how it all works. I'm going to do a follow up post because you are correct... while Congress decides federal holidays, each state has the right to choose which ones it observes.

Wendy, I think it's confusing. It's a holiday. Folks should be off. How's that work with your Man? Aren't his contacts and clients mostly schools?

Lori, hey, way cool you are all getting together for lunch, but weird that you 33% of you are working.

Tracy, don't you think it should be the same for everyone if the State of CA recognizes the holiday?

Nath, yeah, no way you'd know about MLK day in Canada.

8:21 PM PST  
Blogger CindyS said...

On that note, I believe there is something now called Family Day up here - it's optional as in WTF? Apparently Bob and I aren't a family as we didn't qualify. I think it was created to give a holiday in February - the only month without one (I think).

Cindys

10:43 PM PST  
Blogger Rosie said...

Cindy, huh? How is it that you and Bob don't qualify as a family? That's just wrong.

10:51 PM PST  
Blogger Wendy said...

Rosie: Yeah, his clients are mostly schools. And since they were closed yesterday, it was a quiet day for him around the office.

7:40 AM PST  

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