Stewart I. Edelstein says everyone should have a three-day weekend twice a month and 29 holidays a year, and to get that all we have to do is change the calendar to make every month 28 days long.
The current calendar should be revised by the next millennium, which begins in the year 2001, says Edelstein, 42, of Southport."The calendar is an arbitrary clustering of days," he said. "It's a human invention. . . . There's no reason to have 28 days in one month and 31 days in another month. What sense does that make?"
Edelstein proposes that each month be made of up of four weeks that alternate between seven and eight days. That way there would be two three-day weekends each month, and our current holidays could be scheduled on those extra days. Since the new calender would only add up to 360 days, Edelstein is calling for a five-day holiday at the end of the year.
With 24 three-day weekends and five holidays at the end, he figures his calendar gives us the equivalent of 29 holidays a year, far more than most employers currently allow. He figures that employees could make up the extra time by working one extra hour three days a week.
"By staggering the extra hour, we could reduce traffic jams and auto pollution," he wrote in an essay published in Monday's New York Times.
Edelstein, whose hobby is etymology - the study of words - said he got his calendar idea while doing research for a book he is writing on eponyms, which are people from whose names words are derived.
He came across the ancient Roman god Janus - the god of comings and goings - for whom January is named.
"I was taken with the image of his double visage - one face looking forward and the other looking back," Edelstein said.