Something is happening next Sunday, June 16, and it’s not just that Gordon’s Acoustic Living Room is playing the Free Times Café (College just west of Spadina) at 8 pm. Regular readers of these dispatches will know that information about our shows is usually found much further down the page, in the fourth or fifth paragraph after a bunch of perambulating around by me, but I thought “I don’t have to write to some template or formula, I’m a creative guy and I will write what I want and if I want to put the date and time of our next gig in the first line then I’m damn well going to do that and if that makes me a rebel then so be it – I revel in the word rebel.” Although I should say that I have no idea on what world outside of the one in my head could this be at all seen as rebellious.
If I haven’t lost you yet, you may be wondering what other event I was referring to in the previous rebellious paragraph. And the answer is Father’s Day which is always the third Sunday in June. On the hierarchy of totally commercialized or made up holidays that are also not statutory holidays and/or religious events (which takes Christmas and Thanksgiving out of the mix), Father’s Day ranks as number 1 on the second tier of these holidays (I know, what kind of life do I have that I can come up with this category and then divide the holidays into tiers, but then without that we wouldn’t have this missive – and then where would we be).
The first tier of commercialized holidays that are also not statutory holidays and/or religious events includes – in no particular order, Valentine’s Day, Hallowe’en, and Mother’s Day. If alcohol consumption is added to the criteria for this list then St. Patrick’s Day would also be included. Father’s Day doesn’t come close to that first tier.
On the other hand, Father’s Day is a much bigger deal than Secretary’s Day (now more properly called Administrative Professional’s Day – I’m not making that up – which you missed because it was on April 23), International Flight Attendant’s Day (which was May 31 and I was on a plane that day but couldn’t rouse the other passengers to sing, to the tune of Happy Birthday, “Happy International Flight Attendant’s Day to You, Happy International Flight Attendant’s Day to You, Happy International Flight Attendant’s Day, Happy International Flight Attendant’s Day, Happy International Flight Attendant’s Day to You” but if you happen to be on a plane on May 31, 2020 you give it a try and let me know how it goes), International Be Kind to Lawyers Day on April 9 (really, Be Kind to Lawyers Day – I have no words for how stupid that is – sorry am I being unkind), and – just a head’s up – National Automotive Service Professionals Day which is coming up fast on June 12. I think we can all agree that Father’s Day would top that list no problem.
Because Father’s Day is a completely made up holiday (created in the 1920s by the greeting card and necktie companies – OK I totally made this up but it could be true) no one should feel compelled to do anything for anyone for Father’s Day. But while that is intellectually correct, the whole point of totally commercialized made up holidays is to make people feel guilty for not buying something for a specific person who happens to belong to a larger specific group of people who would otherwise not expect to receive anything from anyone on a day that has been arbitrarily chosen by some marketing person.
And this brings us back to the beginning – to Gordon’s Acoustic Living Room. As you recall from the first sentence in the first paragraph, our monthly gig at the Free Times will be on Father’s Day starting at 8 pm. What I didn’t say at the beginning and I wanted to save until now is that there is no cover for the show; it is free! And so, if you want to do something for dad, but stick it to the greedy commercialized folks who made up a holiday to make you feel guilty about not spending money on your father, then bring him to the show. And if your dad happens to be a member of the band, then show up – that can be your present. And if, for whatever reason, Father’s Day does not or no longer has meaning for you then come to the show anyway. There will be lots to eat and drink (please note, that’s not free) and tons of great music.
Hope to see you there.
P.S. In case you were wondering, International Bagpipe Day is March 10. That holiday is not in the first or second tier of commercialized holidays that are also not statutory holidays and/or religious events – it is in the six hundred and sixty sixth tier.