It’s Columbus Day — Whatever…

Another cash-grabbing federal holiday with nothing for the ordinary people to celebrate.

Frederik Verhagen
3 min readOct 10, 2022


Though Washington State doesn’t observe this day, my military town does recognize Colombus Day with the usual flying of the Star-Spangled Banner throughout city. Photo by author.

Ignorant about politics and just going by the electronic calendar on my phone, I spent my entire weekend confused by this holiday called Columbus Day, wondering if my daughter had school or not.

Washington State doesn’t recognize Columbus day. Two of three calendars did not mention Columbus Day, including the free school calendar. So, I got my daughter out of bed and to school like any other Monday.

On my way to the Gym, I noticed the usual stream of flags along the main street and didn’t think much of it. I see the Star-Spangled Banner at least once on every street. Its constant and sometimes nagging appearance lost all its special meaning to me.

I tried to figure out why the city set up its usual celebration decorations. However, as of this writing, I still haven’t figured it out, other than my living in a military city or Wikipedia stating this is a federal holiday.

When I got home, my Twitter feed reminded me that Columbus Day shouldn’t still be a thing, though a certain extreme-right news channel ignorantly considers the Genovese-born explorer a “cool guy.”

The only way Columbus Day affects my life is — like every holiday — the long absence of my darling wife. As a carrier assistant, she’s stuck in a perpetual pre-holiday season limbo. Columbus Day is another commercial holiday in which people flock to Amazon and other sites promoting this month’s “holiday discounts” and stock up on stuff they could have bought downtown.

With military life being uncertain and leading family members to experience high anxiety, depression, and other mental issues, buying happiness and having it delivered to their door relieves stress or depression, though briefly in effect (since they order boxes of random stuff daily), leading to my wife working 16 hours a day. Where is her happiness? Where is mine?



Frederik Verhagen

Stay-at-home father and dork who writes about creativity, science fiction, and little discoveries in life. 🔗