I’ll Be Home For May Day, If Only In My Dreams

On the day after St Patrick’s Day next year, I’m going to load up my MP3 player with every single song I can find about the working life and crank it loudly on a continuous loop at my desk so my co-workers will know that it is May Day in six weeks. It will be a limited range of stuff; the majority of which will be obscure and long lost like the Red Army Chorus singing “L’Internationale” or “Car Wash” by Rose Royce.  Certain songs will have cycled through several hundred times before it’s over. I’m going to leave this playlist on overnight so when I walk in at 8am, there has been no pause. If anyone complains, I will admonish them openly. Why don’t you like May Day? Don’t be such a scab! Why can’t you respect my Marx given right to excessively celebrate the *actual* most popular holiday in the world? When I whistle “Working Man” off key thirty times a day or do a brutal impersonation of Sam Cooke singing “Chain Gang”, you must automatically accept this or you will be in violation of the seasonal laws that have been imposed.  I will say dumb ass things like “Why are you in such a bad mood, it’s May Day!” and you must be happy because I’ve said this to you.

I am going to force everyone to participate in a gift exchange called “Secret Fellow Worker”.  We’ll draw names and swap stuff exclusively from the tool section of The Dollar Store, which will definitely end up in the garbage after being used once or twice, if at all. We must wear certain clothes for the month with a *minimum* of 37 pieces of flare like union badges, orange safety vests and hardhats or green Fidel caps. Then we will gorge ourselves on far too much food just for the hell of it but since it honours farm workers and all of those in the food service industry – we’re going to keep doing it yearly without questioning it. You WILL enjoy it! To not participate is disrespectful the meaning of May Day. Eat until you bust, damn you. If you don’t, the capitalists win!


I’m going to make sure that on April 30th, the only things that will be shown on TV are Norma Rae, Office Space, Roger and Me and the Grapes of Wrath. Black and white shows will somehow find a special place in people’s hearts even though they look super crappy in the age of Hi Def.  I’m going to co-write a figure skating special for the CBC called “On To Ottawa On Ice” – Kurt Browning and Patrick Chan will star as navvies building a canal, one of whom is guaranteed to die before the intermission.  The survivors will eventually fire their boss and form a co-operative after a long and bloody strike at Aggressive Hedge Fund Canal Concerns Ltd. Michael Bublé will randomly appear to sing a medley of my playlist. You must watch it and talk about it all day the next day. It’ll be great. There will be nothing else on anyway. The Business News Network and all remotely capitalist reporting will be on blackout out of respect. If you don’t like it, tough.

All work shall cease so that we can attend the raising of the Red and Black Flags at City Hall and I will have a massive public tantrum when somebody that doesn’t share my beliefs requests that they be removed. A long tirade of a letter will be published in the Mercury Tribune to tell you how wrong you are for not giving your total respect to my holiday. A team of dedicated volunteers will prepare beautiful banners of the Tolpuddle and Haymarket Martyrs to be hung from the Norfolk Street Bridge. I will be impossibly indignant to anyone who gripes about them. Have they forgotten the reason for the season and The True Meaning of May Day?  These martyrs were sent into exile, persecuted and many died for their belief in the working class. Many of the English Tolpuddle group ended up in exile in London, Ontario. It would be anti-Canadian to not love them unconditionally.  Tim Hortons will release a special Martyrs Blend, available only until May First. Every sip will be holiday magic in a cup. It is the duty of the working class to drink as much of it as possible to increase productivity.

the pyriamid

In the lead up to The Glorious Day, you will find it impossible not to notice a near life sized model of “The Pyramid of The Capitalist System” in the middle of the mall. Don’t even think about messing with or replacing this sucker. It’s imperative that you and your children bow down, acknowledge and admire this sacred yet somewhat ugly fibreglass display. It is your beacon of Truth, a reminder of the reason for the season. Touch it or tamper with it and there will be a General Strike! The weight of all of labour’s power will come down on you, subjecting you to universal ridicule for having the nerve to question our right to impose this on you. How dare you not subscribe to the only holiday that matters? And don’t forget to drive by my house to see the May Day holiday light show on the front lawn that will run 24/7. Under the immutable holy words taken directly from The Good Book – “Workers of the World, Unite” –  a giant inflatable Karl Marx and Rosie the Riveter will dance and sing “Solidarity Forever” for all to hear 24/7. Isn’t that cute? It’s a You Tube sensation in the making! I’m going to leave it up until Labour Day, deflated and sad all summer long until it kills the lawn but it will be worth it, because it’s May Day dammit.

Is my new national holiday any more ridiculous than the December you just lived through? Can you wake me up when they start singing Auld Lang Syne, please.



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