Humor Magazine

Like Justin Timberlake and Sexy, I’m Bringin’ May Day Back

By Christopher De Voss @chrisdevoss

Somewhere, lost between the risen Lord of Easter Sunday and the more laid-back Dos Equis guy of Cinco de Mayo, is the Roman flower goddess Flora, who used to reign supreme as THE party icon this time of year.

It's time to get crazy and have some wild fun! But watch your manners...

It’s time to get crazy and have some wild fun! But hey, watch your manners…

I don't always celebrate Cinco de Mayo, but when I do... What am I saying, of COURSE I always celebrate Cinco de Mayo!

I don’t always celebrate Cinco de Mayo, but when I do… What am I saying, of COURSE I always celebrate Cinco de Mayo!

Nowadays, any May Pole dancing is purely coincidental, at strip clubs, with the only reference to Flora the flower goddess being dancers named “Daisy.” How did a celebration dating back before Jesus somehow get lost in the shuffle between Easter eggs and Mexican beer bottles? Even when I was a kid, which I’d like to point out was well after the resurrection and as recent as the 1970s A.D., I remember dancing around the sixth-grade May Pole and savoring the opportunity to hold hands with Sara Getlost as she cried out in springtime rapture, “Ewww! Ewww! Your hands are SWEATY! Ewww!”

It’s that kind of wild, springtime ecstacy that May Day and the goddess Flora were all about.

And did I mention the flower goddess Flora is cool enough to have a tat?

And did I mention the flower goddess Flora is cool enough to have a tat?

So what happened? Or perhaps more importantly: Is Sara Getlost now an alcoholic single mother of six living in an abandoned trailer, as my Mom predicted in her loving attempt to console me that school year? We’ll probably never know for sure. But even at age 12, I thought my Mom’s prediction was a bit harsh; I wouldn’t wish six kids on anyone. Regardless, what I do know is that the true spirit of unabashed springtime revelry was lost somewhere between holding sweaty hands with Sara Getlost and the first Girls Gone Wild video. I say this because, unlike Easter and Cinco De Mayo, the goddess Flora’s party was open to everyone.

There was no fine print
[Must be age 21 or older, or a practicing Christian to participate];

There were no pre-qualifications
[Eligibility based on proof of I.D. or Baptismal certificate];

And there were no strings attached
[Offer subject to change. See local liquor store or priest for details].

Because Flora’s annual May Day party had no such stipulations, it was celebrated for centuries by every country in the Northern Hemisphere. Except Morocco; they already have enough parties.

A painting for Moroccan president Milo Guadalupe on a typical morning in 1798.

A painting of Moroccan president Milo Guadalupe, nursing a hangover on a typical morning in 1798.

But for everyone else, dancing around the May Pole was just the beginning. Each country celebrated the return of spring in its own unique, generally intoxicated way, which was inclusive to everyone. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying you have to be Mexican to celebrate Cinco de Mayo. I’m just saying that if you find yourself drunk and wearing a sombrero while wandering the streets of East L.A., being Mexican wouldn’t hurt. The same goes for dressing that way on Easter.

Unless you are actually Chevy Chase, if you're dressed like this and not Mexican you won't make it out of east L.A. alive. Even on Cinco de Mayo.

Unless you are actually Chevy Chase, if you’re dressed like this and not Mexican you won’t make it out of east L.A. alive. Even on Cinco de Mayo.

As May Day approaches, I hope you’ll consider joining me and others in helping re-unite the entire northern hemisphere on May 1 by celebrating spring with flower goddess Flora. Naturally, there will be exciting activities for everyone, including:

Dancing around the May Pole together.

Dancing around the May Pole together (Hey, is that Sara Getlost?)

Sack races for flower children of all ages.

Sack races for flower children of all ages.

Free falling with Mother Nature.

Free falling with Mother Nature.

And whatever these people are doing.

And whatever it is these people are doing.

Together, let’s make May Day great again! Actually, my hands are getting sweaty just thinking about it…

(Ned Hickson is a syndicated columnist with News Media Corporation. His first book, Humor at the Speed of Life, is available from Port Hole Publications, Amazon.com or Barnes & Noble.)

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