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With the holiday spirit still fresh in our hearts, I've been feeling the need to get something off of my chest. I'm about to do the unthinkable. No. The unimaginable. I'm about to tell you why I'm tired of the Fourth of July. Now before you aim a Roman Candle at me, or flood my Facebook feed with words like “Merica” or even worse, “Murica,” please hear me out. Don't get me wrong, there are certain things I like about the 4th of July; the barbeques, the family reunions and maybe even some boating. Unfortunately, I'm writing this column because the bad is starting to outweigh the good. After going through the motions for 22 years, what I have are two things I just can't stand any longer. First on my list is the annual “oohs” and “aahs.” Really? Are these fireworks actually taking your breath away? Are they really that much different than any previous year? I saw four full fireworks shows this year and not a single explosion, in any show, actually impressed me. I know there are better ones out there – I saw the Beijing Olympic ceremonies. I don't know what the hell they keep shipping us. I feel like we're the fireworks outlet mall of the world. Where are the “Lord of the Rings” flyingdragon fireworks? I'll give one of those damn things a standing ovation, something I rarely even do for humans. But, attending my city's local fireworks display, I ran into something that I think everyone has had to deal with during the 4th at some point or another. That is, the mom giving her one year old a fireworks play-by-play. For just under an hour, I was forced to endure the following assorted statements on repeat. “Oh look at that firework!” “Candice, look at that red firework! Oh, and look and the blue firework!” I don't have any kids, nor do I have a younger sibling, but I have news for this lady, as well as parents across the United States. One year olds have two speeds. They're either on or they're off. It was 10:30 at night and pitch black outside, so naturally I turned around to find out which speed that baby was going. Its tongue was hanging out with a Cheerio on its chin and that mom was convinced her baby was listening to every word she was saying. I started thinking to myself. Worst-case scenario, I punch someone (not the baby) for the first time in 2012. Best-case scenario, the baby's first word is “fireworks.” Not exactly a head start to making the Montessori dean's list. So let's go ahead and put the fireworks play-by-play on the list of things I don't need. If anyone else is tired of celebrating the birth of America with Coronas and Chinese imports or fireworks displays sponsored by your local dollar store, you can join me next year on my couch, watching some baseball and basking in 60 degree air conditioning. Now that's what I call an American holiday.

July 4th  

My beef with the summer holiday