Yes, Julian Fellowes coined a perfectly perfect sentence, spoken in a perfectly half-inquisitive, half-derisive manner, by one for whom nothing is out of bounds. No wonder, there is a YouTube compilation video of her finest observations entitled, S@!t the Dowager Says. This particular example of refuse is, in my opinion, right up there with Shakespeare’s “What’s in a name?” Both questions make us think about what we take for granted, only to realise that neither are what they seem.
What is a weekend, really? As kids, it probably was Saturdays and Sundays to us. As adults, it is anytime we get when we don’t have to do what we have to do. For a moderately miserable person with frequent, unpredictable bouts of anxiety, the Dowager’s query rings true in circles of life that would not even strike people who know what it is. These people, as you surely know, are most people who know how to really live it.
A weekend is a state of mind. You can’t be technical about it. Weeks technically begin on Sundays and end on Saturdays. Now, who wants to work on Sundays so that you could, technically, take a two day weekend on Friday and Saturday? I, personally, have always enjoyed Fridays. The anticipation of fun and release is more fun than fun and release. A weekend is always a weekend in the metaphorical sense. Living weekends are not what they are cracked up to be. What’s the point of reserving the best of TV on a Sunday night? When everyone, as they laugh or cry along, always remember the *word-used-to-describe-the-dowager’s-observations* that will come down the next day? You should keep that for the tougher nights, like harrowing Mondays and harrowing-continued Tuesdays instead.
If I were to add to the list of profundities above, then mine would be, “What is a Tuesday?” Or more precisely, what is the point of it? Nothing great happens on it. Nothing pleasant happens on either side of it. And perchance, it is a holiday, you don’t really know what to do with it. I’d exchange the mood-spoiling anticipatory fear of Sunday night for the blandness of Tuesday. In fact, I’d exchange the days themselves. If Sunday could make Tuesday better, then there’s nothing like it. Actually, there really is nothing like it.
For, who could ever get a Sunday to be what it is? This Sunday girl has learned to dry her eyes, as ordered by Miss Deborah Harry. Miss Harry perfectly captured the pathos, the quiet desperation of this, frankly, over-sugarified day in her song. Just like what we think of the Christmas holidays is what we were made to think by Greetings’ cards companies approximately a century ago (kids, Greetings’ cards were these papers with pictures on them that people used to write notes on and give each other, before email and texting came along), a weekend is a modern invention, probably caused by or cashed in on by advertising. From what I remember about that Downton Abbey episode, an American origin was suggested.
On paper, it is a great idea. It motivates through an entire work week. But, the promise rarely lives up to its expectations. Fridays are great, fun and relaxing. Saturdays are when you get stuff done. And Sunday morning is, truly, fun. It starts to sag after that and mischievously blends into another work week. Well, that is my pattern anyway. Would be lovely if you could share yours!