Super Bowl Sunday is basically the most important holiday/event/athletic extravaganza that the United States has to offer, which is why plenty of people tend to ask a pretty obvious question around this time of the year, every year: Why isn't the Monday after Super Bowl Sunday a holiday? It seems a little silly that we haven't just decided to bite the bullet collectively as a society and actually petition for it. Our hangovers would certainly thank us when Monday rolls around.
Look, the fact is, even if you don't really like football, it seems like basically everyone tunes in to watch the biggest game of the whole season. According to CNN, over 111 million people watched the Super Bowl in 2017. That's roughly 30 percent of our entire country, which is, in my opinion, a perfectly acceptable reason to start a legit petition to treat the Monday after Super Sunday like the holiday that it is.
Now, this isn't just me whining about waking up for work after spending a whole day eating greasy food and drinking beer. There is some legitimacy to the idea of turning the Monday after the Super Bowl into a national holiday, primarily related to just how damn unproductive people tend to be on that day. In fact, the U.S. is so unproductive that money is actually lost on that Monday, rather than earned, from people who show up to work.
A 2016 survey estimated that over 16 million Americans would miss work the day after Super Bowl Sunday, and another 7.5 million would show up late to the office.
And, according to that survey, even for people who do show up to work that Monday, they're not really getting much done. The results of the survey estimated that approximately a billion dollars in revenue would be lost for the country collectively on the Monday after Super Bowl Sunday. This led some companies, like ketchup-maker Kraft Heinz Co., to give its workers the day off. In fact, Heinz was so in favor of taking that Monday off that they started a petition on Change.org for "Smunday," the proposed holiday name for the Monday after the Super Bowl.
"We can all agree that going to work the Monday after the 'Big Game' on Sunday is awful," the petition reads. It continues,
So as far as we’re concerned at Heinz, we as a nation should stop settling for it being the worst work day of the year. We don’t settle for that awesome football Sunday to be just like every other day of the year. No. We eat. We drink. And we be merry, having the tastiest times of our lives.
If we can make Big Game Sunday awesome, we can make the Monday after awesome too. Make that Monday more like Sunday. Make it a SMUNDAY and have more Sunday on your Monday than any of us have ever had in our lives. Don’t settle. Sign it. For your sanity. For your family. For your country.
Bold move by a bold condiment, but there is some truth to the idea of an event that's truly as popular as (and probably less divisive than) many of our current holidays, becoming its own legit holiday.
For a holiday to become officially recognized, it has to be approved in Congress as a federal holiday.
Take recent holidays like Columbus Day and Martin Luther King Jr. Day, for example. Both of them have historical significance, but both of them faced opposition in various states, with Arizona refusing to recognize MLK Jr. Day until a national boycott forced them to, and with 27 states still refusing to acknowledge Columbus Day as a holiday. Creating and following through on a federal holiday (and not just a holiday, but one that actually allows you to have the day off from work) is, unsurprisingly, extremely political.
In short, it's pretty unlikely that "Smunday" is going to become a thing in our lifetime. So, the next time someone raises an argument for why it should become a holiday, you should maybe ask them to consider this: In contrast to Heinz's argument about the government losing money by people going to work, a Congressional Research Service report found that federal holidays actually cost the tax payers $200 million a day, on average.
Yeah, I can suck it up and go to work.