I’m half-asleep at 7 a.m. Muscle-memory and the morning’s first jolts of caffeine in my bloodstream are propelling me through the front doors of the high school. They guide me through the front lobby and point me in the general direction of my classroom.
“We did it,” they say to me with a lift in their voice.
“What did we do?” I ask, baffled.
“We made it to Friday,” they reply and follow it with a strange whooping noise, like they stepped on a tack. “T.G.I.F, Nate!”
“We certainly made it,” I say and smile through gritted teeth.
At the risk of sounding like a curmudgeon, a wet blanket or a sardonic asshole, the whole “Friday”-thing exasperates me. In fairness, I’ve never been a big proponent of small talk. I’m a little awkward around people and, quite frankly, not very good at banal conversation.
While I believe in maintaining a pleasant countenance, and condone the non-verbal greeting—the head nod or the subtle wave—words are precious and must not be wasted by announcing, aloud, the day while passing another person.
Maybe I’m succumbing to latent misanthropic tendencies; maybe my mother is right, and I’m too uptight about friendly banter; or maybe I’m morphing into Larry David as I begin to sniff 50 years old, but people announcing the days of the week has become a veritable pet-peeve for me.
Although Friday is the most frequently mentioned, the other workdays get their reps in as well. And Monday through Thursday are often accompanied by equally predictable inflections and gesticulations.
So here’s the rundown.
“It’s Monday” is always mentioned in a long, doleful tone with the perpetrator’s bottom lip protruding.
“It’s only Tuesday” is usually followed by an eye-roll and possibly an aggrieved sigh.
“It’s Wednesday. We’re almost there” is said with a lilt of optimism and—if you stand too close to the perpetrator—a playful and encouraging punch on the shoulder.
Thursday is almost as bad as Friday and consists of many monikers, largely based on the age of the perpetrator. For example, younger people in the workforce have a tendency to call it “Thirsty Thursday,” a remnant of their college days.
The older generations may use even more egregious and vicariously embarrassing names, such as “Friday Eve” or “Friday Jr.” or—yes, I’ve actually heard this spoken—“Friday’s baby.”
And you can pretty much always expect a fist-bump to follow Thursday’s announcement.
All said and done, it’s no wonder the bars are packed by 5 p.m. on Fridays.
After all, we made it. It’s Friday.
 I know some people are already trying to guess who I’m describing here, but this is a hypothetical scenario designed to establish a point. The person I’m describing is The Every Friday.
 I’m not even going to use gender-specific pronouns.
 Try this sometime: Count how many times in your workplace someone mentions that it’s Friday on the day before a weekend.
 Oddly, this seems to go away on weekends. When was the last time someone stopped you and said, “Hey, it’s Saturday”?
 Each year, I buy an animal calendar. This year is penguins, and 2021 was llamas.