Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Happy Presidents' Day from The A.V. Club

Abraham Lincoln (Hulton/Archive/Getty Images), some mattresses (TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP via Getty Images), George Washington (Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
Abraham Lincoln (Hulton/Archive/Getty Images), some mattresses (TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP via Getty Images), George Washington (Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
Image: The A.V. Club

Unlike most American holidays, which are about explosions and/or solemn reflections on the people who sacrificed their lives for our nation, Presidents’ Day is a celebration of compromise. It’s a day about not necessarily getting or doing what you want, but you get it or do it anyway because… it’s just what you do. The day was originally set aside to honor George Washington, our first and most splinter-prone president, but since his birthday (February 22) is so close to Abraham Lincoln’s (February 11), the nation collectively decided to do what it does for siblings with close birthdays and just give them one shared party on a neutral day—specifically the third Monday in February. So neither of them gets a special national holiday to call their own, forcing them to compromise, which is why Americans mark Presidents’ Day not with fun stuff like fireworks or candy but with big sales on boring stuff like mattresses. It’s not necessarily what you want, but it might be something you need to get anyway.

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Here at The A.V. Club, we’re going to celebrate President’s Day by taking the day off to spend some time with our mattresses. We’re talking sleep. We’re talking forts. We’re talking riding them down the stairs like a surfboard, provided we can find small enough mattresses or large enough stairways. We’ll be back tomorrow with our regular mattress-ride of content, but if you need something to read until then, you can check out some of our Love Week coverage like Katie Rife’s chat with Margaret Cho, our feature on devastating TV breakups, Danette Chavez’s ranking of TV bro vacations, or a breakdown of classic video game romances to see which are meant to be and which ran out of 1ups a long time ago. Or you could catch up on WandaVision and see what kind of wacky hijinks happen when Barb & Star Go To Vista Del Mar. Or you could read the information on the website for the National Mattress Council, which recommends buying a brand new mattress from a licensed mattress dealer every six to eight days.

We don’t care what you do, as long as it’s only sort of what you want and you only kind of enjoy it, just the way Lincoln and Washington intended.