What do we want? Longer weekends. When do we want them? Not just at Easter | Jack Marshall’s column

It takes a feast to make you question the famine.

By Jack Marshall
Monday, 25th April 2022, 4:55 am

Now I appreciate that’s a hoity-toity and faintly biblical way to start a pretty mediocre weekly column, but bear with me - we’re talking weekends, and who doesn’t love weekends?

Last weekend, we all - presumably - enjoyed the long Easter break. Let’s look at the Easter weekend in depth; let’s fully appreciate its majesty. Here we are, living our lives as two-day weekend paupers, when Easter rears its ecclesiastical noggin and doubles our lot.

All of a sudden, you’ve almost got more time than you know what do to with. Those subtle calculations you have to make on a conventional Saturday night regarding how you need your Sunday to pan out ahead of a new working week are out the window. Freedom.

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Easter: sun, mates, and so much time

Thursday feels like Friday, Friday feels like Saturday, Saturday feels like some kind of giddy mushroom-trip fever dream when you realise that, after today, you still have two - two! - days off. It’s a taste of the high life, my friends. A real glimpse of Nirvana. We need more of it.

Some self-reflection: my intense feelings of greed for longer weekends may be predicated on recency bias following an Easter break dominated by rare sunshine and hours whiled away in beer gardens with friends.

It may be predicated on four days of no alarm in the morning and of not worrying about getting an early night so as to not wake up groggy. On four days when all is forgiven for not going to the gym because your diet is now primarily chocolate-based.

All those facets are distinct factors, but it comes down to something more fundamental: weekends are innately great. Which brings us back to the core issue at hand here: compromise. We’ve established two is too few and four is a treat. Three is the sweet spot.

The concept of a four-day working week buttressed by wonderfully thick three-day weekends is not a new one. Over the decades, trials have shown it makes employees happier, more productive, less likely to take sick days, and greener. Come on. You know it makes sense.

The grassroots four-day working week movement starts here. Go forth and spread the weekend. And demand that Creme Eggs are sold year-round while you’re at it, too.