Derby, schmerby. It’s May 1, May Day …


… and here’s a Wikipedia overview:

May Day occurs on May 1 and refers to several public holidays. In many countries, May Day is synonymous with International Workers’ Day, or Labour Day, a day of political demonstrations and celebrations organised by unions, anarchists, and socialist groups. May Day is also a traditional holiday in many cultures.

In all my many trips to Europe, only once did I find myself in position to attend a May Day celebration.

It was in Vienna, in 1987. I walked into the city center from my hostel off Mariahilfer Strasse, and found a comfortable place to stand along the Ring. The various unions, workplaces and districts were represented, and at the end, after the sanctioned elements had marched past, there were a series of piggybacking anarchists, radicals and even hooded Muslim extremists.

Ah yes, I remember it well. Afterwards I splurged on schnitzel and draft beer, reflecting on the way that America detached its labor holiday from the rest of the world’s.

It’s another wonderful of our oblivious exceptionalism at work, and accordingly, I find it delicious that on a day when Louisvillians will be drunkenly gazing at race horses, people will be on the streets of cities throughout the US in protest of Arizona’s immigration law. That’s the spirit. Perhaps when the race is over, and the horse pimps have gone home …