Just as Christmas is the Thanksgiving of Jesus holidays and Thanksgiving is the Hanukkah of secular holidays*, Labor Day is undoubtedly the Chinese New Year of vague American (Mon)days off of work.
Labor Day -- Labour Day, as they call it in England (where it doesn't exist and where they call England "Bri (pause) An")** -- comes from somewhat murky origins. No one is really sure when Labor Day started or why, but, interestingly, cultural anthropologists*** suspect that the origins lie in both traditional monotheism ("thank a single, all knowing god I don't have to work today!") and paganistic ritual ("I'd do anything to not have to work today, including donning goat leggings and sacrificing something/someone!"). Yowzah! Who knew well researched facts could be so interesting?
So what does all of this mean to the modern human on Labor Day Weekend?
Hahaha. What a stupid question. Traditionally, one starts by getting drunk on Friday, possibly with one's colleagues. Quite drunk (again traditional), as if to say to the world "Fuck you, I earned this!... (something indecipherable)...Oh yeah buddy?!? Where's my phone? (sob)" Hopefully your cab driver sees it that way too, especially if the ceremonial vomiting occurs.
Then you have Saturday, a day for reflection and shame spiraling, followed immediately by Sunday, Labor Day's Eve. This is when you realize that you don't have to work tomorrow and the real reason for the season sets in: You don't have to work tomorrow.
For a Traditional Labor Day's Eve Dinner, prepare Fish and Chips. In this recipe, I've used tilapia instead of cod or halibut or whatever. Tilapia is super cheap and that's what I had in my freezer. Instead of tartar sauce, I used a (not pictured) horseradish must-ayo-chup that I used on a burger the night before. Also, I only took like 5 pics of the fish and chips and most of 'em were out of focus, so you get what you get (filler).
2 Tilapia filets, split in half
1 cup flour plus several tbsp for dredging
1 cup beer
4-5 yukon gold potatoes****
1 qt oil
parsley and lemon wedges for garnish
1. Cut the potatoes into wedges, shorter and fatter than regular fries -- more like steak fries. Fry according to these directions.
2. Whisk together 1 cup flour and beer. Dredge split tilapia filets in a couple tbsp of flour. Dunk them into beer batter and fry at 350 until golden, about 4-6 minutes. Drain and salt.
*Interestingly, Ramadan and Rosh Hashanah are the respective Halloweens of Islam and Judaism. That's actually how the whole Palestine conflict came about -- when to celebrate Halloween.
**That English language is some zany shit! Although not as zany as Japanese, which just sounds like hilarious non sense.
***Goddamn, that's a long word.
****You don't have to use Yukon golds. I like them for their nice color (and taste). Use anything but a waxy potato.