In anticipation of this weekend’s festivities, we are drafting 44 major and not-so-major holidays, based on statistical factors that we believe assist in quantifying their subjective values. Why are we doing this? We’ll get back to you.
Prior to each draft, four categories are chosen for statistical evaluation of each prospect:
1. NOTORIETY. How highly each holiday is ranked in an open forum.
Metric: (100 – The Top Tens Holiday Ranking / 10)
2. CONSENSUS. Rewarding holidays that appeared frequently in Top-5 rankings.
Metric: ((538 Holiday % / Top 538 %) *10)
3. DOMINANCE. Power ranking, by month, each holiday based on above metrics.
Metric: (Inv. Rank (Notoriety + Consensus) / # Eligible Holidays In Same Month)*10)
4. INTANGIBLES. As this process is still inherently subjective, we allow each GM to score each prospect, from 1 to 5, by whatever unfounded opinions they have formed.
Metric: (GM1 Score + GM2 Score)
The combined score from these four categories equals a Draftee’s Overall Prospect Rating (OPR), which will allow GMs to compare draftees over several dissimilar categories throughout the course of time.
Each draft is conducted between two teams, Team Humanity and Team Chaos.
DRAFTING ON BEHALF OF HUMANITY:
Dylan Lamb, Founder of The Everything Draft.
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DRAFTING ON BEHALF OF CHAOS:
W.M. Akers, Viceroy of the Past.
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The Holiday Draft will be performed in a classic serpentine style, with a 1–2–2–1 structure for every round.
At the time of drafting, Mr. Akers actively celebrated 16 holidays on the list of eligible prospects, compared to Mr. Lamb’s 15. From this, he received the draft’s first pick.
1. THANKSGIVING. 39.1 OPR.
Will: At its best, Thanksgiving is a perfect holiday: all about eating, hanging out with people you love, and also eating. I love cooking, and I’m a bit of a show-off, and there’s no better showcase than Thanksgiving. It’s really great to casually say, “Oh yeah, I made both of these plates of fancy dinner rolls”, like it’s a thing you do all the time.
Dylan: This, to me, is the greatest holiday in the American canon, controversial origins aside. It has the highest OPR of any Everything Draft prospect thus far, including our previous Best Picture Oscar Winner draft. Advocating for this Meal of Many Starches is a statement selection coming out of the gate.
Will: Top Thanksgiving dish?
Dylan: I am personally a champion of stuffing, with candied yams as my sleeper pick.
Will: Stuffing is king. I’m also partial to gravy.
Dylan: Just straight-up gravy? I had no idea who I was up against.
2. INDEPENDENCE DAY. 35.2 OPR.
Dylan: Fireworks. Grilling. A family softball game. Pontoon partying. Independence Day arrives as Summer is at the peak of its powers. Plus, American holidays as we know them would be vastly different if this one hadn’t occurred. Regardless of one’s partisanship over Thanksgiving v. Christmas, we can all stand together behind this one. ‘MERRRICA!
Will: No need to sell it to me– I adore the Fourth of July. I think that fireworks are one of the happiest things in the world: a big free show based around the very sound premise that people like explosions and bright lights. Also, there’s usually a Twilight Zone marathon on. Great pick!
3. CHRISTMAS. 39.0 OPR.
Will: I was hoping you’d be mad enough to let it drop, but I didn’t really expect you to. Glad to see the War on Christmas hasn’t managed to completely destroy its draft value.
Dylan: As an open Thanksgiving fanatic, Christmas feels rather nice at 3. Michael Jordan was the third pick in the 1984 NBA Draft, and Christmas is arguably the Michael Jordan of the Holiday Draft. The combination of Jesus + Santa is just too powerful to deny beyond this point.
4. HALLOWEEN. 32.9 OPR.
Will: I’m taking two greedy handfuls of this holiday, even though the sign on the door asks me to only take one. I live in a neighborhood that’s full of children, and there’s nothing better than watching a few thousand kids maraud around in silly costumes. I wish it happened four times a year.
Dylan: This is the clear-cut pick at 4. The pageantry, the general spookiness. Plus, it dominates the month of October. Any top costume nominees from recent memory?
Will: There was a five-year-old boy in my neighborhood who dressed up as Carl Sagan, complete with a mop wig and a laserdisc of Cosmos.
Dylan: It’s probably a fair time to mention to our readers that you live in Park Slope.
Will: Yes. Yes I do.
5. MEMORIAL DAY. 30.5 OPR.
Will: Slightly off-beat pick, but it feeds nicely into my strategy of seeking out the most pleasant holidays, wherever possible. Memorial Day is the official kickoff of summer, and it’s a perfect holiday in that it doesn’t demand anything of you besides hanging out with people, drinking a little and maybe grilling if you feel like it. Plus, I’m all for remembering the fallen; if I can do that by shotgunning a Miller High Life at a rooftop barbecue, it’s a win-win.
Dylan: I admire the culture that you’re building over there at #TeamChaos. Memorial Day is basically Independence Day with a lesser emphasis on fireworks.
6. ST. PATRICK’S DAY. 25.7 OPR.
Dylan: I’m not about that green beer nonsense, but a Guinness in the afternoon as a fiddle plays is a time I look forward to all year. St. Patrick is basically the Indiana Jones / Kim & Kanye of all the saints: he HATES snakes. Also, corned beef rules.
Will: Oh, lord. I would have let this drop all the way to the bottom of the draft. And I’m here to tell you, you can have a Guinness in the afternoon any time you want.
Dylan: You just blew my mind.
7. EASTER. 29.7 OPR.
Dylan: The bonnets? The pastels? The Judy Garland soundtrack bumping over brunch!?
Will: I can taste the Cadbury now. It’s not one that I would have jumped on, but this gives you a 1-2 punch of top tier Christian holidays, and that’s nothing to sneeze at.
8. LABOR DAY. 28.1 OPR.
Will: I’m doubling down on my summer bookends, and grabbing the slightly melancholy, vaguely fancy, and extremely drunk Labor Day. I’ve now completely encircled summer, which means that if we were playing Go, I would get to steal Independence Day from you.
Dylan: These mind-game-slash-board-game tactics will serve you well later, I’m sure. Despite the impending autumnal doom latent in Labor Day, this is a spectacular complement to what you have going.
9. SHROVE (FAT) TUESDAY. 11.3 OPR.
Will: This party’s about to get a little more intense! I realize I’m reaching all the way down the draft board here, but it’s a unique holiday, and I’d’ve been sorry to let it go.
Dylan: There’s nothing more fun than doing all the horrible things while lying to yourself that you’re not going to do any of them for the next 40 days. #RespectTheReach.
Will: I like it because it means totally different things all over the world: daiquiris and king cake in New Orleans, dancing costumed people on stilts in Rio, and a two-day, town-wide football match in a tiny village in England. It’s a party before the darkness descends, and that is so thoroughly human that I think #TeamHumanity should be embarrassed to see it snatched away.
Dylan: Your team is looking pretty fun at the moment, but a fun parent does not always the best parent make, which is why I am countering with…
10. FATHER’S DAY. 27.0 OPR.
11. MOTHER’S DAY. 25.8 OPR.
Dylan: Because hey, moms and dads, am I right?
Will: I simply can’t argue with that. As both a father, and the husband of a mother, I can’t believe I let both of those get away.
12. CHRISTMAS EVE. 27.4 OPR.
Will: Grabbing a marquee holiday that I think dropped a little too far.
Dylan: I should have closed the manger circuit while I had the chance.
Will: And now I’m going to get weird here, and grab…
13. NEW YEAR’S DAY. 27.8 OPR.
Will: Here’s a holiday that I think offers a lot more than New Year’s Eve. It’s the whole world sitting around hungover, and eating waffles and poached eggs. And I think that’s a good thing.
Dylan: We obviously do not endure the same hangovers.
Will: Let it be known that I regretted this choice as soon as I made it.
14. NEW YEAR’S EVE. 32.1 OPR.
Dylan: To foil your last selection, I’m picking up the last remaining holiday that boasts a 30+ Overall Prospect Rating, and doubles as the greatest excuse to pop bottles and kiss just because you stayed up kinda late.
Will: Feel good with #TeamHumanity, feel TERRIBLE with #TeamChaos the next morning. I can’t believe I took New Year’s Day over this. What a bizarre decision!
Dylan: I understand reservations are difficult to come by, and the traffic is sometimes terrible, but the sozzled false hope associated with this evening gives it the decisive edge over the dehydrated reality of January 1st.
Will: I will say that New Year’s Eve is Top-2 most reliably disappointing holidays, which is why I slid around it.
15. CINCO DE MAYO. 13.0 OPR.
Dylan: Reaching deep into my pockets to get some sort of fun started over here on #TeamHumanity.
Will: You have now nearly cornered the market on Big Loud Party Holidays, with Mardi Gras and Halloween being the notable exceptions.
Dylan: The Battle of Puebla is very close to my heart.
Will: As is, I assume, a pitcher of watery margaritas.
Dylan: As it is the only water I drink on Cinco de Mayo, I’m very thankful for it.
16. CHINESE NEW YEAR. 21.3 OPR.
Dylan: Is this a holiday you celebrate?
Will: It is not! But the Chinese Zodiac is an unparalleled delight, and Chinese dragons are the best kind of dragon.
Dylan: No further questions.
17. HANNUKAH. 20.5 OPR.
Will: Backing up my last pick with another of the happiest, least-demanding holidays still on the board.
Dylan: A savvy pickup this late, and another dampening of my Christmas pick.
Will: Gotta contain Christmas.
18. WOMEN’S DAY. 14.0 OPR.
Will: Ah, I see. At #TeamChaos, we consider every day to be Women’s Day.
Dylan: I mean, I consider every day to be Valentine’s Day, but ignoring the day’s existence because of that philosophy doesn’t always bode well for me.
19. MARTIN LUTHER KING DAY. 13.4 OPR.
Will: Blast! My next pick!
Dylan: Cornering the market on holidays commemorating guys killed in their thirties for being disruptively promotional of an elevated common good.
Will: I still haven’t gotten over the tragic death of Independence Day’s namesake, Johnny Independence.
20. VETERAN’S DAY. 22.9 OPR.
Will: One of the most solemn holidays remaining, and one I’ve had my eye on all night.
Dylan: You OWN November.
Will: I really don’t think people spend enough time thinking about World War I, so I’ll quickly remind the world that because the armistice was fixed at the symbolic eleventh minute of the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, lots of people died that morning because their commanding officers wanted to burn off ammunition while the war was still raging.
Dylan: Wow. That is, like, the most horrible example of stat padding. Russell Westbrook, you’re off the hook!
21. MLB OPENING DAY. 10.3 OPR.
Will: The most important holiday of all! This was right near the bottom of the board, but I’d have been sick if you took it, and I’ve been sick enough this year.
Dylan: This pick will forever be tied up in arbitration, so I’m not worried about it.
22. VALENTINE’S DAY. 25.3 OPR.
23. EARTH DAY. 21.0 OPR.
Dylan: I’ll stoop for ‘Love’ and ‘The Planet’ in the sixth round.
Will: “Blech” to the first and “very nice” to the second.
Dylan: I feel lucky to have had some nice Valentine’s Days. I’m leaning in and buying low.
24. BOXING DAY. 15.3 OPR.
25. FESTIVUS. 14.8 OPR.
Will: In the interest of the continued boxing in of Christmas, I’m grabbing the two lowest-stakes December holidays.
Dylan: Christmas will not be contained!
Will: I’ve always found it kind of stupid the way people act like Festivus is a real thing, but I love Seinfeld, and that’s good enough for the 25th pick.
26. GROUNDHOG DAY. 17.0 OPR.
Will: It’s getting weird here!
Dylan: If we’re now drafting holidays based on their affiliated comedies, I’m selecting my half-birthday, here and now.
Will: The movie aside, I hate Groundhog Day. It’s a holiday with rules that make no sense, which makes it antithetical to my strategy.
Dylan: Having grown up Catholic, I’ve always gotten a kick out of rules that make no sense.
Will: That is a sterling piece of self-examination.
27. SUPER BOWL SUNDAY. 10.3 OPR.
Dylan: #TeamHumanity prefers holidays that celebrate the conclusion of something, rather than a daunting new beginning. Plus, it’s a day that celebrates gratuitous eating and football — which helps aid my missing out on Thanksgiving. This doubles as Puppy Bowl Sunday, yeah?
28. ROSH HASHANAH. 16.0 OPR.
29. YOM KIPPUR. 10.3 OPR.
Will: I’ve always thought Yom Kippur was a beautiful holiday, and it’s a form of atonement that is 40x more effective than Lent.
Dylan: While that stat is completely accurate, I don’t actively seek holidays centered around dedicated fasting.
Will: Rosh Hashanah, on the other hand, now gives me New Year’s Day, the Jewish New Year, and the Chinese New Year.
Dylan: This is troubling. Though it does leave my favorite Jewish holiday available…
30. PURIM. 12.4 OPR.
Dylan: Going all in on Purim. Whoever said this was a ‘lesser’ Jewish holiday is… probably right, but it has to be the most fun. This is a happy-ass holiday, and in the face of some super-high life-and-death stakes for the Jewish people! It also helps soothe the absence of Halloween by getting my costume count up. And, to make up for losing out on Hanukkah, I’m taking my own Festival of Lights celebration…
31. DIWALI. 18.5 OPR.
Will: Ack! I was about to grab that. Very nice. Okay, I’ve gotta take a different tack here: You’ve got Earth Day, which means I have to take…
32. ARBOR DAY. 17.1 OPR
Will: What could be more #TeamChaos than chilling out and planting a tree?
33. MAY DAY. 13.0 OPR.
Will: Kicking off Round 9 with everyone’s favorite socialist holiday.
Dylan: May Day is a holiday that is literally a cry for help.
34. GOOD FRIDAY. 15.9 OPR.
Will: Based on everything I’ve learned from The Long Good Friday, this is a dangerous holiday indeed.
35. DERBY DAY. 9.0 OPR.
Dylan: Doubling down on bonnet-centric holidays here. Those 2 minutes of racing are more exciting than most of the remaining prospects on the board.
36. CANADA DAY. 17.2 OPR.
37. KWANZAA. 13.3 OPR.
Will: Canada Day makes up for the loss of July 4th…
Will: …and Kwanzaa is another lovely holiday.
38. PATRIOT’S DAY. 10.0 OPR.
39. LEAP DAY. 11.6 OPR.
Dylan: Patriot’s Day is a beautiful day in Boston; as a current resident of the city I am honored to pick it up. With regards to Leap Day: any holiday that makes you wait four years to celebrate it stands as another shining example of a holiday with awesome rules that make no sense.
40. ASH WEDNESDAY. 9.3 OPR.
Will: My wife has put in a strong request for this.
Dylan: Always a nice reminder that YOU ARE DUST, AND TO DUST YOU SHALL RETURN. Really puts me in the mood to eat fish sandwiches for a month and a half.
41. PASSOVER. 13.0 OPR.
Will: I appreciate Passover’s branding, since it includes telling a story about itself as part of the official calendar.
Dylan: In first grade, a classmate of mine made an off-putting remark involving my last name being Lamb and spreading my blood on a door to save the class and, coincidentally, Passover has never really been my thing.
42. APRIL FOOL’S DAY. 8.5 OPR.
43. OPPOSITE DAY. 13.0 OPR.
Dylan: Hoping most people peruse this draft on one of these two holidays, then get confused on how to vote while still staying true to the holiday, and vote for #TeamHumanity out of bewilderment.
44. ALL SAINT’S DAY. 11.1 OPR.
Will: Halloween’s sourpuss big brother!
Dylan: You ran the table on ‘holidays involving hangovers from better holidays’.
Will: By and large, I’m very happy with this team. Arbor Day! Yeah!
XX. PRESIDENTS’ DAY. 13.9 OPR.
XX. COLUMBUS DAY. 6.5 OPR.
Draft Duration: 1 hour, 32 minutes.
About as long as you should stay at any particular establishment for an effective holiday pub crawl.
BY THE METRICS.
AVERAGE TOP TENS RANKING: #TeamHumanity (4.3) < #TeamChaos (4.4)
AVERAGE 538 TOP FIVE SCORE: #TeamHumanity (1.3) > #TeamChaos (1.1)
AVERAGE MONTHLY POWER RANKING: #TeamHumanity (6.8) > #TeamChaos (5.9)
AVERAGE INTANGIBLES RATING: #TeamHumanity (7.0) < #TeamChaos (7.4)
AVERAGE PROSPECT RATING: #TeamHumanity (19.4) > #TeamChaos (19.2)
Please cast your vote below. You might as well: you’ve already made it to the bottom of this very long list.
Enjoy the holiday weekend, and instead of drinking a green beer, maybe check out what’s Next on Draft.