Saturday, September 21, 2013

Crazy Holidays for Retirees

Kelly Ripa announced on Live with Kelly and Michael that September 9 was National Hermit Crab Awareness Day. Until that moment, I wasn’t aware of this holiday. I felt like the woman in the Prego commercial who is surprised to learn she prefers that brand to the one she’s been buying for years. An audio thought bubble opines: “I wonder what other questionable choices I’ve made…” And she flashes back to show how she’s picked nerdy-looking men, or horrific hairstyles, or too-trendy clothes.

My thought bubble read: “I wonder what crazy holidays for retirees I’ve been missing out on…” After all, some restaurants give you a free dessert on your birthday. Who knows what exclusive treatment could be available for retirees on holidays that are off our radar? You’ll be happy to learn that I’ve researched this and I’m sharing some special days with you, in calendar order.

Dowager’s Hump Awareness Day occurs the second Wednesday of each month. People who are still working get to celebrate Hump Day every week. All the dowagers get is one day a month. We’re still researching appropriate ways to celebrate this holiday. For starters, skip the camel jokes altogether, no matter how cute you think that GEICO commercial is. Free pudding at all restaurants would be nice. It seldom has any lumps, much less humps.

National Mismatched Plaid Day coincides with St. Patrick’s Day. Many people wear plaid for that holiday, Lord only knows why. It’s the Scots who make a big deal of displaying the plaid of their clan’s heritage, not the Irish. No matter. Retirees who wear mismatched plaids on this holiday get free beer at any bar with a name starting with the letter “O.” Which is to say, there’s free beer at virtually every Irish pub for retirees who wear plaid, period. Older folks never do plaid right.

Be still my heart! There’s an entire week set aside to celebrate Quaint Expressions (like “Be still my heart…”) It begins the third Sunday in April, with Cat’s Pajamas Day (my favorite expression of the group.) Retirees get to stay in their jammies all day, even if they go out to eat. And not just for brunch, for any meal. You can check out the rest of the week (including free honey on The Bee’s Knees Wednesday) on line.

National Velcro Appreciation Days are June 19 and September 13. This invention is so fabulous that it’s celebrated twice a year: first on the birthday of the inventor (George de Mestral) and then on the day he filed the original patent. We commemorate these happiest of retirees’ holidays by giving them a 20% discount on any article of clothing or household item that uses hook-and-loop fasteners (Velcro is a trademark) in any way whatsoever.

After a long battle, National Nap Appreciation Day was declared to be the summer solstice, June 20 or 21. Check your Farmers’ Almanac each year. The other faction wanted the winter solstice, December 21 or 22, the day with the most darkness. June aficionados won out. How can you expect retirees to get through about 15 hours of daylight without a late-afternoon nap? Retirees get to take a snooze wherever they are that afternoon. This includes in the driver’s seat of their car, at a stoplight.

National Cranky Pants Day is celebrated the Monday after Thanksgiving. We’re all in a lousy mood by then, even if we didn’t fight the crowds to get some early holiday shopping done. We were probably stuck in traffic, or in a line someplace we had no choice but to go at some point that weekend. You might think that this holiday should be for everyone, not just retirees, but it’s not. We’ve earned the right to be cranky. Others haven’t. Give us a wide berth on Cranky Pants Day.

Medicare Post-Enrollment Exhalation Day happens every fall, the day after the deadline to enroll in or change retirement healthcare plans. As an added stress, it can move from year to year, but it’s often December 7. If you’re not sure when it is, listen for the collective whoosh of retirees sighing in relief that the deadline has once again passed. On this day, retirees get to cut in line at the pharmacy. Come to think of it, let them cut in line wherever they are. Or else be prepared to listen to all their ailments.

No doubt there are other holidays well-suited to being celebrated by retirees, but these are the first seven that I turned up. Be sure to take some time to observe every one of them in a memorable way. If you’re not retired yet, do something appropriate on each of the days for someone who is. A blogger friend, perhaps? Just sayin’…

No comments: