Mayday! Mayday! What happened to May Day?

*Warning-no goggling was done to research this-this is all from my brain….and no animals were harmed in the making of this blog.

 May Day used to be a holiday and now it isn’t. 

This is like the Pluto thing which I learned was a planet and then all of a sudden-not so much.

Maybe I was just dreaming about dancing around a Maypole as a kid? I have a fuzzy memory of meeting in a village park somewhere in the English countryside and doing this-but it could have been some stale porridge or bad pork pie giving me a hallucination from childhood.

Maybe all the communist countries in the world got sick of parading all their new tanks and missiles down the street to prove they were powerful to all those waiting in line for bread and toilet paper. That used to happen,….right? I don’t know if they still do it.

May Day had something to do with medieval or pagan rites of spring. I also think it had something to do with workers’ rights.

But that was another era and it is all gone. The only time we use it now is when a ship is sinking or a plane is going down……or do we?….Mayday! Mayday! My holiday is missing.

Anyway the workers’ rights deal got me thinking about Woody Guthrie, which got me thinking about Pete Seeger and then Bruce Springsteen.

So here is Atlantic City for May Day.

This is a workers kind of song—Bruce is talking about being a working man and then having to “break bad” in order to make a go of it. He knows what he is doing and he knows it ain’t right—-but here we go baby. Bruce at his best, he sings of the common man in a desperate situation. All solid, salt of the earth, workingmen and women have wondered—if only for a moment—if honesty is the really the best policy- and if hard work alone will get them where they want to go.

The compromise of a workingman leads me to this song.

A sad song- get what you want but not want what you get. The authentic cowboy dressed up in rhinestones for the crowd and gaining the world by losing his soul. After a ton of work and compromise.

Yeah…I know….Glen Campbell-but I like this song.

Why not- another working song from Glen.

And finally kids- back to my alt rock roots for my favorite wasting time by working for the man tune.


You may have a different interpretation and that is fine.

Music is subjective and everyone celebrates holidays in their own way.

Even recently demoted holidays.



8 thoughts on “Mayday! Mayday! What happened to May Day?

  1. “(Don’t Go Back to) Rockville” is one of the songs I’ve selected for the soundtrack of my life (and future Stephen Speilberg movie). For me, it reflects a struggle to move forward in the face of so much dragging us down. I can see how this could relate well to work.

  2. Hey Wayne, I vaguely remember May Day too, but it seems that by around 1970 it was no longer being observed very much in the U.S. Weird. And no apologies needed for Glen Campbell – a very talented guy indeed. Wichita Lineman is a really beautiful song. Thanks for stopping by my blog today; hope all is well around the cave. 🙂

    1. Thanks Marie and I was not a member of the geek committee that added “May the fourth be with you” (really–enough guys with making Star Wars a religion…it was a movie…just a movie)

  3. Good choice of songs. Here in the UK we have THREE bank holidays in about 4 weeks – ridiculous.
    I too remember the dreaded Maypole dancing at school. Yuk, you had to actually hold a girl’s hand…

    1. OK…that makes me feel better, because I remember it vividly…very strange to have your entire childhood in a different country from adulthood….memories, nostalgia and culture collide together in a very trippy way. 🙂

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