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December 26, 2008

T’is the Day After Christmas, So You’d Better Show Up for Work!


What a grumpy bunch of people are surrounding me today. Why? Because they don’t think they should have to be at work on a Friday.


Ha! I laugh!


Today, of course, is Friday, December 26. It’s the day after Christmas, which this year fell on a Thursday – and that means nothing but trouble for me.


Some of you will be familiar with my fond feelings about Thursday holidays, inevitably leading as they do to the expectation that people will also get Friday off work – because, well . . . because one day off work is just torture!


I give in when it comes to Thanksgiving, mainly because the entire business world is pretty much shut down, and the effort required to get people to come in and work on the Friday after Thanksgiving is simply more trouble than it’s worth. Besides, the majority of those who would show up would either be sick, hung over or both (or suicidal if they’re Detroit Lions fans), and no one needs to deal with that.


Christmas, however, is another matter. When I first began assembling my present staff, there was of course the predictable movement to get me to declare Christmas Eve and New Years Eve company holidays. I refused. There is no reason to do this. You get Christmas and New Years off because they are holidays. Now you want a day off to get ready for a day off? I. Don’t. Think. So. I did go so far as to close up shop at 3 p.m. on both days, but a day off is not happening.


But this year, with Christmas and New Years both occurring on Thursdays, the pressure was on again to “just go ahead and make it a four-day weekend.”


Apparently this is necessary because a day off on Thursday makes coming to work on Friday seem just oh, so icky, and hey, you’re already in the weekend mindset, so how can you possibly be expected to get back into the work mindset?


Oh, I don’t know, maybe by, say, just doing what you do every Monday?


And if you don’t think you can, that’s what vacation days are for. Even brand new employees get 10 vacation days every year. They can use them whenever they want, for any reason or for no reason at all. Lacey, who has worked for me for a very long time, is quite familiar with my attitudes about additional days off being added onto established holidays. So Lacey is smart and she saves vacation days every year to take around Christmas and New Years. Fine with me. That’s what they’re for. This year she’s taking vacation days on Christmas Eve and the day after Christmas.


Most of my other employees, who already used up all their vacation days months ago, are sitting here with me today, acting extremely gloomy. They’re giving me a lot of dirty looks. I am not a cold, cruel man, so I’m responding by giving them extra work to do. It’s keeping them busy and keeping their minds off how much they hate me – or at least keeping them too busy to come in here and tell me about it.


The poor, poor dears, being expected to work on a Friday that isn’t a holiday and that they didn’t request to take as a vacation day – and for which I am paying them.


I wonder if it’s still possible to get a job running Guantanamo Bay. To listen to these schlumps, I am eminently qualified.


© 2008 North Star Writers Group. May not be republished without permission.


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