I know November and December aren’t here yet, and we aren’t even close to Halloween but allow me to say, HAPPY HOLIDAYS! Because next week is the 37th holiest day of the year. No, not Bosses Day on October 16th. And no, not National Nut Day. That’s on the 22nd, so you nut lovers will have to wait a few a few more days before you put out your cashew wreath. I know, I know, cashews are really seeds and not actual nuts. Shut up nut nerds! The day I’m talking about is Columbus Day! Columbus Day is when we celebrate the much hallowed voyage of Christopher Columbus, who sailed the ocean blue in 1492, to Discover America.
Screw Columbus! Columbus Day! The holiday so lame, it makes Arbor Day looks like the 4th of July. I still don’t know why there are still so many Columbus day parades in honor of this guy. They even have Columbus Day White Sales! Of course, I’ll celebrate even the worst person if it means I can go to the Galleria for some discounted, 300 thread count, egyptian cotton sheets. Chris wasn’t a very nice guy. If you read your history books, (preferably ones not made in Texas) you’ll see that he was kind of a D-bag. You’ll find a few things closed around Birmingham in observance of the holiday. The banks will be closed along with the post office. But interestingly enough, the state liquor stores will be open. Sure I can get rip roaring drunk, but what if I get so incredibly wasted, that I want to do something crazy, like take out a small business loan. Great! My dream of opening my very own cat obedience school is ruined. Thanks Columbus! Now who will teach the city’s felines to extend their pinkies while drinking tea? And what am I gonna do with all these happy Columbus day greeting cards if the post office is closed? Now all my friends and family will get their Columbus cards late. Where is the justice?
If you’re wondering why I’m so down on Chris, I’ll tell you. Here’s the thing. Christopher Columbus is famous because he discovered America. “Discovered” America? You can’t wander into someone’s backyard and start discovering shit. I remember as a child, I tried to “discover” some apples from the tree in Mrs. Johnson’s back yard. After Mrs. Johnson told my mom, I “discovered” an ass whoopin that American historians still talk about to this day. Put that on the calendar!
Columbus was looking for India and instead found what is known today as America, and just started calling the people there, Indians. You don’t go out on a blind date with Stephanie, show up at the wrong house, take out Shirley instead and keep calling her Stephanie all night. “Please stop calling me Stephanie, and how did you get into my house?” “Shut up Stephanie! I discovered this blind date and I’ll call you whatever I want! Now, do you want to go to the movies in the Nina, the Pinta or the Ford Taurus?” And speaking of cars, Columbus was like that annoying jerk you have to carpool to work or go on a long trip with. You know you’ll never do it, but you really want to push him out on the overpass. Columbus’s crew hated him and threatened mutiny because they were sailing in the wrong direction so long. They were starving, afraid of dying and lost all trust and faith in their captain. Also, he would never stop at a gas station to ask for directions, wouldn’t let you pick the song on the radio, would constantly break wind, roll all the windows up and laugh. That’s not funny!
And this whole proved-the-earth-wasround story is a load of Colum-bull! For centuries, cultures knew the earth was round, so I don’t know where that “prove the earth isn’t flat” stuff came from. Only thing Columbus really proved is that he didn’t know his head from his ass when it came to sailing. I have a terrible sense of direction too. Where’s my parade?! Now I know I’ve been hard on the guy so far, but I’m a fair man. I’ll give credit where credit is due. He may not have been the best sailor in the world, but he was pretty darn good at genocide. Oooooh Chrisy loved him some genocide! Here’s an actual excerpt from his captain’s log: “Ewwww, gross! Indians are icky. Let’s totally kill em and take their land and stuff. Won’t that be totally awesome?!” Wow, Columbus sounded like an evil, murderous 13 year old girl. Crazy huh?
Now you know why Columbus and I don’t get along. And if you dig a little deeper, you’ll see it’s much worse than the things I’ve written. Way worse. So on this, Native American angering, history ignoring, half-assed holiday, I will commemorate it the same way I do every year. By making a bunch of wrong turns to the Ramada Inn and giving some real Indians smallpox.
“Here’s the thing…” is a weekly column featuring humor and commentary by Christopher Davis, comedian and host of Fresh Ground Comics and View of the City. Send your feedback to email@example.com.