The fourth Wednesday is the best weekday to have your event

I just got an invitation to a new event series that I was told would take place on the First Tuesday of the month. However, I already go to two different dinners that take place on the First Tuesday, and I suspect that was no accident. For social events, people use the weekends, and for other events people prefer the weekdays. They have a psychological desire for the first week of the month.

So I ran a quick set of yahoo queries to find out how many hits there were on the web for "first monday" and similar strings. I figured that would tell when the most events do occur, and help people pick a day that is likely to have the least conflicts.

The results are below:

first monday 2,710,000
first sunday 2,430,000
first friday 1,870,000
first tuesday 1,750,000
first saturday 1,680,000
second tuesday 1,410,000
first thursday 1,310,000
second sunday 1,090,000
first wednesday 1,090,000
third thursday 1,070,000
second saturday 937,000
second monday 904,000
third tuesday 865,000
third sunday 849,000
third wednesday 824,000
second wednesday 780,000
third monday 761,000
third saturday 724,000
second thursday 721,000
third friday 524,000
second friday 495,000
fourth thursday 493,000
fourth sunday 452,000
fourth tuesday 432,000
fourth monday 350,000
fourth wednesday 307,000
fourth saturday 240,000
fifth sunday 209,000
fourth friday 202,000
fifth tuesday 20,600
fifth wednesday 14,700
fifth friday 12,900
fifth saturday 10,700
fifth thursday 2,530
fifth monday 2,460

As you can see, for personal events those first week days are a bad choice. For weekday events the first monday is the worst choice and the first tuesday is next. I did not bother also checking for "2nd monday" as I figured that would probably even out. Somebody can do that if they like.

The real winner is a "fifth" day. Of course not all months have a "Fifth monday" -- only 4 of them do this year. February only rarely has a fifth of any given day. So if you want an irregular event that seems a bit more special, a fifth day is really good for avoiding conflicts. For a regular event, the fourth Wednesday is your winner.

I've been thinking of arranging a dinner salon of my own. The day I was favouring was the third Thursday, mostly for the clever acronym "ThirThur", but that turns out to be more popular a choice than I expected. I guess others like the rhyme of it.

Google disagrees, by the way and puts "first tuesday" ahead by a notch. Either way if you have a new event, those two days are a poor choice if you want to avoid conflicts.

Last One In

I never organize anything for the "fourth" week, but instead, organize it for the "last" week. People don't seem to be able to figure out that, say, if the first of the month fell on a Friday, then the fourth Wednesday is the 27th. But they can figure out that the 27th is the last Wednesday of the month. Some months, it'll be the fifth Wednesday, other months there's only four. But knowing that the event is on the last Wednesday of the month, they at least know when to show up.

By extension, this leaves events organized for the third week as needing a lot of reminders. But people seem able to figure out (e.g.) the "second Wednesday" okay.

unfortunately "last friday" is a common phrase

Google gives 274M compared to only 16M for forth friday. I blame it on Critical Mass being on the last friday of the month.

Yeah, I guess I was busy

Yeah, I guess I was busy "last Friday" as well ... and it was only by coincidence that it was the "last Friday" of the month. No, wait, I guess it was the first Friday of this month. So much for my theory about people being able to figure that much out :)

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His name is Brad Templeton. You figure it out.
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