May 25th – ♪♪Dance, Dance, Dance♪♪

May 25, 2017 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Good morning ‘hoofers’. Today is Thursday, May 25th. Today’s reasons to celebrate are:

National Tap Dance Day 

I’m not going to ‘tap dance’ around the subject. National Tap Dance Day could be interpreted to mean that this is a day to avoid, or “tap dance” around, problems or issues at home or with colleagues at work. However, if you chose that interpretation…you would be wrong.
National Tap Dance Day celebrates the birth date of Luther Bill “Bojangles” Robinson, one of the premier tap dancers of all time…born on this date in 1878. It was created as the result of a Joint Resolution of Congress declaring May 25th National Tap Dance Day. President George H. W. Bush signed it into law as a national day on November 7, 1989.
If you already know how to tap dance, retrieve your old tap shoes from that dusty box on the top shelf in your garage and brush up on your skills. If you have ever considered learning how to tap dance, today is the day to do so. If you don’t feel like taking up tap dancing today, you can still celebrate today by learning more about Mr. Robinson, learning more about tap dancing, and/or watching old films which include tap dancing (particularly ones featuring Mr. Robinson).

Geek Pride Day

Before we celebrate Geek Pride Day, I should probably define what a geek is. The word geek originally came from the Middle English meaning freak and has similar roots in German and Dutch. It then migrated to the United States and was often used to describe carnival performers. In the past decade or so it has morphed into a more positive connotation. In its current incarnation, the word geek refers to someone who enjoys and extensively purses a single area of study with great interest and energy – from computers to music, to film, to video games, or any other singular subject. While the term geek originally carried a negative connotation, recently, geeks have embraced their image and made being smart, “cool”.  Geeks will often bond together in homogenous groups based on mutual interests that cover almost any specialized topic.
Geek Pride Day was created in Spain in 2006, and soon spread worldwide via the internet. It is intended to promote geek culture and is celebrated annually on May 25th. In 2008, Geek Pride Day was officially celebrated in the United States for the first time, It was heralded by numerous bloggers, coalescing around the launch of the Geek Pride Day website. In 2009, Geek Pride Day received a further boost when it was acknowledged by the Science Channel, which aired special programming to celebrate Geek Pride Day events. In 2010, Geek Pride Day spread further, within cities as diverse as Halifax, Nova Scotia; Budapest, Hungary; Tel Aviv, Israel; Timişoara, Romania and San Diego, California. In 2013, Gothenburg, Sweden was added to the list when the city held a Geek Pride parade and it was decided that it would be an annual event. Also, in 2013, and annually since, a Meetup group in the New York City suburbs calling themselves the Westchester Geeks, has held a Geek Pride Day celebration.

Cookie Monster’s Birthday 

Actually, Cookie Monster’s Birthday celebrates the birthday of Frank Oz, the voice of the Cookie Monster from 1969 to 2002 (and occasionally since then). He (Frank Oz) was also the voice of many other iconic characters from Sesame Street like Miss Piggy, Fozzie Bear, and Grover, among others. He voiced the character of Yoda in the Star Wars films as well.
Author’s Note: There is another Cookie Monster’s Birthday on November 2nd. It marks his first appearance on Sesame Street.

National Wine Day  

Wine has been an important part of human history and culture for thousands of years. Archaeologists in Speyer, Germany discovered the oldest bottle of wine in existence while excavating two Roman stone sarcophaguses in 1867. The bottle dates back to at least 325 AD. It is now on display at the History Museum of the Pfalz in Germany. To celebrate this holiday, visit a winery near you today. If you don’t live near a winery, have some wine at home with your dinner tonight.

National “Brown Bag it” Day 

Last Thursday, we celebrated Brown Bag It Thursday and I don’t know whether this is intended to be the same holiday or not. The general consensus of my sources indicate that today is National “Brown Bag it” Day, but Brown Bag It Thursday was listed in one of my most reliable sources last week, and National “Brown Bag it” Day is listed in the same reliable source for today, so maybe they are different holidays.
Notwithstanding all of that, let’s face it, fast-food restaurants and food trucks (“roach coaches”) aren’t particularly known for their healthy dining options. Most offer only foods that are high in calories and low in nutritional value. Packing your own lunch for work or school is a great way to make sure you know that you are getting proper nutrition during the day.
Aside from negatively affecting your physical health, eating lunch at fast-food restaurants and on “roach coaches” day in and day out can negatively affect your financial health as well. Buying lunch every day is expensive. Packing your own lunch is a great way to save money.
To celebrate National “Brown Bag it” Day, pack your own healthy lunch today before you go to work/school. If you are retired, pack a lunch and go to a park.
Author’s Note: When packing your lunch, be sure to take into account the availability, or lack thereof, of a refrigerator, and make appropriate food choices. Food poisoning is nothing to be scoffed at.

More Holidays

On This Date

  • In 1787 – The Constitutional convention opened in Philadelphia with George Washington presiding.
  • In 1844 – The gasoline engine was patented by Stuart Perry.
  • In 1895 – Oscar Wilde, a playwright, poet, and novelist, was convicted of a morals charge and sentenced to prison in London.
  • In 1925 – John Scopes was indicted for teaching the Darwinian theory in school.
  • In 1927 – Ford Motor Company announced that the Model A would replace the Model T.
  • In 1935 – Babe Ruth hit his final home run, his 714th, and set a record that would stand for 39 years.
  • In 1953 – In Nevada, the first atomic cannon was fired.
  • In 1963 – In Africa, 32 countries formed a coalition against white rule. The Organization of African Unity was founded to promote decolonization and end white minority governments in Africa. The OAU was replaced by the African Union in 2002.
    In 1961 – America was asked by President Kennedy to work toward putting a man on the moon before the end of the decade.
  • In 1968 – The Gateway Arch, part of the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial in St. Louis, MO, was dedicated.
  • In 1977 – An opinion piece by Vietnam veteran Jan Scruggs appeared in “The Washington Post.” The article called for a national memorial to “remind an ungrateful nation of what it has done to its sons” that had served in the Vietnam War.
  • In 1977 – The first Star Wars film was released. George Lucas’ epic space franchise is one of the most popular in movie history.
  • In 1979 –Etan Patz disappeared. The disappearance and murder of the 6-year-old boy from New York City and the extensive publicity it received helped spark the missing children’s movement.
  • In 1979 – American Airlines flight 191 crashed shortly after takeoff. The photo showing the lopsided DC-10 hurtling towards the ground at O’Hare International Airport in Chicago is one of the most horrifying images in aviation history. All 258 people on board died.
  • In 1981 – Daredevil Daniel Goodwin scaled Chicago’s Sears Tower while wearing a “Spiderman” costume, in 7 1/2 hours.
  • In 1985 – Bangladesh was hit by a hurricane and tidal wave that killed more than 11,000 people.
  • In 1986 – Approximately 7 million Americans participated in “Hands Across America.”
  • In 1992 – Jay Leno debuted as the new permanent host of NBC’s “Tonight Show.”
  • In 1997 – Senator Strom Thurmond became the longest-serving senator in U.S. history (41 years and 10 months).
  • In 1997 – Poland adopted a constitution that removed all traces of communism.
  • In 1999 – A report by the House of Representatives Select Committee on National Security and Military/Commercial Concerns with the People’s Republic of China concluded that China had “stolen design information on the United States’ most advanced thermonuclear weapons” and that China’s penetration of America’s weapons laboratories “spans at least the past several decades and almost certainly continues today.”
  • In 2000 – The Walt Disney Co. and Time Warner Inc. signed a long-term deal that ended a dispute over the airing policies of Time Warner. Time Warner had blacked out Disney programs for a 39 hour period the previous month due to the lack of an agreement.\
  • In 2001 – Erik Weihenmeyer, 32, of Golden, CO, became the first blind climber to reach the summit of Mount Everest.
  • In 2001 – Sherman Bull, 64, of New Canaan, CT, became the oldest climber to reach the summit of Mount Everest.
  • In 2002 – A China Airlines jumbo jet broke apart in mid-air. The Boeing 747 aircraft crashed into the Taiwan Strait, leaving no survivors among the 225 people on board. The accident was caused by improper repairs 22 years earlier, and the airplane was far beyond the serviceable life recommended by Boeing in terms of the number of flights, total hours in the air, and the number of years in service.
  • In 2006 – In Houston, former Enron Corp. chiefs Kenneth Lay and Jeffrey Skillings were convicted of conspiracy and fraud for the downfall of Enron.

Noteworthy Birthdays

If you were born on this date, Happy Birthday. You share your birthday with the following list of illustrious individuals – and about 20-million other people.

May 24th – Wassup Bro!

May 24, 2017 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Good morning Bros. Today is Wednesday, May 24th. Today’s reasons to celebrate are:

Brother’s Day 

National Brother’s Day was created in 2005 by three young brothers, ages 2, 5 & 7, who wanted to do something special for each other. They celebrated the first “Brother’s Day” at a “Build – a – Bear” in Las Vegas Nevada building bears for each other.
Since then, Brother’s Day has expanded to include not only to your biological male siblings, but also to ‘brothers’ bonded by lifelong friendship, affiliation with a group, or life experiences…such as fraternity brothers or comrades-in-arms. Brothers come in many shapes and sizes and so do their relationships to us. They are the men in our lives we can always count on, even if we don’t see them that often. What makes them ‘brothers’ is the shared memories we have and the challenges they faced together.
To celebrate Brother’s Day, reach out to as many of your ‘brothers’ as you can today – whether genetically linked, linked by affiliation, or linked by shared life experiences.

Aviation Maintenance Technician Day

Aviation Maintenance Technician Day is a United States holiday that recognizes the efforts of aviation maintenance professionals. In addition, it recognizes the achievements of Charles Edward Taylor…the man who built and maintained the engine used to power the Wright Brothers’ airplane. In fact, it is celebrated on May 24th because that is the date of Taylor’s birth.
Aviation Maintenance Technician Day is currently observed by 45 states in the United States. On May 24, 2007, a United States House of Representatives resolution supporting the goals and ideals of a National Aviation Maintenance Technician Day was introduced. Congressman Bob Filner of California was the sponsor of the resolution. On April 30, 2008, the resolution passed by a voice vote.
The text of the resolution reads, in part:

“Resolved, That the House of Representatives –
(1) supports National Aviation Maintenance Technician Day to honor the professional men and women who ensure the safety and security of our airborne aviation infrastructure; and
(2) recognizes the life and memory of Charles Edward Taylor, the aviation maintenance technician who built and maintained the engine that was used to power the Wright brothers’ first controlled flying machine on December 17, 1903. 

Author’s Note: I was an aircraft mechanic for much of my time in the Air Force. I could have pursued aircraft maintenance as a career after retirement – but instead, I opted for my second career as an over-the-road truck driver. No regrets.

Scavenger Hunt Day

The word scavenger comes from the 14th-century English word scawageour — which referred to officials that traveled the country collecting taxes.
Scavenger Hunt Day is an annual celebration of the popular party game called scavenger hunt. The unofficial holiday encourages people to get together with friends and family and participate in a scavenger hunt.
A scavenger hunt is a game where individuals or teams compete to find items or perform tasks provided to them as a list by the organizers of the game. The goal is to fulfill the requirements on the list before the other competitors. Usually, at the end the hunt, a grand prize awaits the first person/ team to reach the end of the list. Scavenger hunts combine aspects of racing, competitive hunting, and hide and seek. In many scavenger hunts, the organizers hide items in difficult to find places and give the participants clues on how and where to find them. Other hunts may require contestants to complete a route.
In recent years, technology has changed the way the game is played and has made it possible for players around the world to participate in scavenger hunts. Internet scavenger hunts require people to surf online and visit websites to find clues and solve problems.
Geocaching is yet another recent innovation in the world of scavenger hunting brought about by technological advances. It is the use of Global Positioning system (GPS) receivers to find caches or geocaches hidden at different spots around the world. A cache is usually a waterproof container that includes a log book and trinkets. Finders are required to leave their signature or name in the log book and may take a trinket out of the box as a way to remind them of their achievement. They must replace the trinket with another one of their choice and leave the cache in the same place they found it for others to find.
To celebrate, organize a scavenger hunt with your family or friends.

Asparagus Day

Asparagus Day celebrates that tasty slender vegetable, asparagus. Asparagus peaks in flavor and is at its beat in springtime, although it grows all year long.
Asparagus can be boiled, grilled, sautéed, steamed and roasted. No matter how you choose to cook it the flavor is unique. Roasting and grilling make asparagus taste sweet; steamed or boiled the asparagus keeps its original flavor.
Asparagus with slender tender spears is used in most recipes while thicker spears stand up better in grilling recipes. Thin spears are tasty raw or blanched and great used in salads or served as appetizers in recipes with the dip of your choice. Treat yourself to some asparagus tonight. It pairs nicely with any meat or fish.

National Escargot Day 

Escargot is the French word for snail. They are univalve mollusks with a spiral shell. Of the various varieties, the vineyard snail, which feeds on grape leaves, is considered the best eating; but it grows slowly and is difficult to raise. It has a dull, yellowish-brown streaked shell with a blotchy flesh, and grows to approximately 1½ to 1¾ inches in size. The French petit-gris is a smaller variety, growing to about 1 inch, and is currently grown in the United States. Its shell and flesh are brownish-gray in color. Fresh snails can be found in specialty markets throughout the year and are generally boiled first and then baked or broiled in the shell. Canned and packaged snail shells are also available in many supermarkets.
Like most other exotic foods, snails are purported to “taste like chicken.”
I WILL NOT BE CELEBRATING THIS HOLIDAY. The only way I enjoy snails is watching them dissolve when I pour salt on them.

More Holidays

Emergency Medical Services for Children Day – Observed on Wednesday of the third full week in May.

International Tiara Day 

Jerusalem Day  – Dates vary according to the Hebrew Calendar.

On This Date

  • In 1543 – Copernicus published proof of a sun-centered solar system.
  • In 1624 – After years of unprofitable operation Virginia’s charter was revoked and it became a royal colony.
  • In 1689 – The English Parliament passed Act of Toleration, protecting Protestants. Roman Catholics were specifically excluded from exemption.
  • In 1738 – The Methodist Church was established.
  • In 1830 – Mary had a little lamb was published. Sarah Josepha Hale’s poem is one of the best-known English language nursery rhymes.
  • In 1830 – The first passenger railroad service in the United States began service.
  • In 1844 – Samuel F.B. Morse formally opened America’s first telegraph line. The first message was sent from Washington, DC, to Baltimore, MD. The message was “What hath God wrought?”
  • In 1870 – Engineers began drilling the world’s deepest hole. The Kola Superdeep Borehole had reached the unsurpassed depth of 40,230 feet before the project was abandoned due to lack of funding.
  • In 1878 – The first American bicycle race was held in Boston.
  • In 1883 – After 14 years of construction, the Brooklyn Bridge was opened to traffic.
  • In 1899 – The first public garage was opened by W.T. McCullough.
  • In 1930 – English aviatrix Amy Johnson became the first woman to fly from England to Australia. Her 11,000 mi flight aboard a de Havilland Gypsy Moth aircraft took her from Croydon, U.K. to Darwin, Australia in 19 days.
  • In 1931 – B&O Railroad began service with the first passenger train to have air conditioning throughout. The run was between New York City and Washington, DC.
  • In 1935 – The Cincinnati Reds played the Philadelphia Phillies in the first major league baseball game at night. The switch for the floodlights was thrown by President Franklin Roosevelt.
  • In 1954 – The first moving sidewalk in a railroad station was opened in Jersey City, NJ.
  • In 1956 – The first Eurovision Song Contest was held. Lys Assia won the first edition for Switzerland. The ESC is a major song contest in Europe and one of the world’s longest-running TV programs. It is held in a different country each year.
  • In 1958 – United Press International was formed through a merger of the United Press and the International News Service.
  • In 1962 – The officials of the National Football League ruled that halftime of regular season games would be cut to 15 minutes.
  • In 1967 – California Governor Ronald Reagan greeted Charles M. Schulz at the state capitol in observance of the legislature-proclaimed “Charles Schulz Day.”
  • In 1976 – Britain and France opened trans-Atlantic Concorde service to Washington.
  • In 1983 – The Supreme Court ruled that the federal government had the right to deny tax breaks to schools that racially discriminate.
  • In 1994 – The four men convicted of bombing the New York’s World Trade Center were each sentenced to 240 years in prison.
  • In 2000 – Five people were killed and two others wounded when two gunmen entered a Wendy’s restaurant in Flushing, Queens, New York. The gunmen tied up the victims in the basement and then shot them.
  • In 2000 – The House of Representatives approved permanent normal trade relations with China. China was not happy about some of the human rights conditions that had been attached by the United States lawmakers.
  • In 2001 – In Jerusalem, 23 were killed and over 300 were injured in the Jerusalem wedding hall disaster. Hundreds of wedding guests fell two stories when a portion of the third floor collapsed. The tragedy was Israel’s worst civil disaster.
  • In 2001 – Temba Tsheri, age 15, became the youngest person to reach the summit of Mount Everest.

Noteworthy Birthdays

If you were born on this date, Happy Birthday. You share your birthday with the following list of illustrious individuals – and about 20-million other people.

  • Gabriel Daniel Fahrenheit 1686 – Physicist.
  • Emanuel Leutze 1816 – Artist.
  • Lilli Palmer 1914 – Actress.
  • Tommy Chong 1938 – Comedian.
  • Bob Dylan 1941 – Musician.
  • Gary Burghoff 1943 – Actor.
  • Patti LaBelle  1944 – Singer.
  • Alfred Molina 1953 – Actor.
  • Rosanne Cash 1955 – Singer.
  • Kristin Scott Thomas 1960 – Actress.
  • John C. Reilly 1965 – Actor.
  • Erin Close 1967 – Actor.
  • Tommy Page 1967 – Singer.

May 23rd – A Penny for Your Thoughts

May 23, 2017 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Good morning fans of charmed, copper-coated zinc coinage. Today is Tuesday, May 23, 2017. Today’s reasons to celebrate are:

Lucky Penny Day 

Lucky Penny Day is for people who believe that inanimate objects can influence one’s life. Superstition says that unless the ‘heads’ side is facing up, picking up a penny isn’t ‘lucky’. Since I’m not superstitious, I pick up all pennies…strictly in an effort to combat litter of course. When exactly pennies came to be seen as harbingers of good luck is unknown; however, it this is thought to have been the case for hundreds of years.
The penny and all other coinage dates back to the Ancient Roman Empire. Today’s penny was modeled on the ancient Roman denarius. When the Ancient Romans invaded the part of Europe known today as England, they brought their monetary system with them. Even when the Romans departed the region several hundred years later, the idea remained, and later English coins were made to be similar to those used by the ancient Romans. The penny was officially introduced into England in 757 A.D., and they traveled to America with the first settlers.
The penny, or 1¢ coin, has existed since 1793 as a United States coin, as a result of the Coinage Act of 1792; signed into law by President George Washington. Before that, each colony issued their own coinage. The composition of the U.S. penny has varied throughout its history. From 1793 until 1837, it was 100% copper, as copper was plentiful at the time. From 1837 until 1857, it was made of bronze (95% copper and 5% tin and zinc). From 1857 until 1864, the penny was 88% copper and 12% nickel, which gave the coin a whitish patina. From 1864 until 1962, the penny was again made of bronze; with the exception of 1943, when the penny was composed of zinc-coated steel to conserve copper for the war effort. (Note: a limited number of pennies in 1943 were made from copper; making them the rarest of pennies and highly valued by collectors). In 1962, the composition was changed again, removing the small amount of tin, and making the composition of the penny 95% copper and 5% zinc. In 1982, the penny’s composition changed one last time to its current composition of  97.5% zinc and 2.5% copper.
According to the latest figures, each penny costs 2.41¢ to make, making their manufacture unfeasible, and last year there were about 10 billion pennies were minted. I am among the growing number of people who believe that we should stop minting pennies and that the penny should be taken out of circulation, and used only for accounting purposes. There, now you have my 2¢ worth about pennies. Let’s petition our senseless government officials to pass laws that make America a ‘centsless’ society. A penny for your thoughts about discontinuing pennies.

World Turtle Day 

World Turtle Day was created in 2000 by American Tortoise Rescue. Its purpose is to bring attention to, and increase knowledge of turtles and tortoises, and encourage human action to help them survive. Turtles and tortoises are among the world’s oldest creatures and have been around for more than 200 million years. These ancient creatures evolved before mammals, birds, snakes, or even lizards. Biologists believe that turtles have managed to outlive many other species due to the unique protection provided by their shells.
Turtles come in all different shapes and sizes and can be found on every continent except Antarctica. The smallest is the Bog Turtle, which usually measures just four inches in length, and the largest is the Leathery Turtle, which can weigh up to 1500 pounds.
Many species are now endangered due to loss of habitat and pollution. You can celebrate this holiday by learning more about turtles and tortoises today and/or donating to a local turtle rescue organization.

Title Track Day

Some albums are defined by a single track, ones that tie the entire album together and will be the banner for the sound it brings, and often the best of these are the title track of the album. Title Track Day is a holiday to sort through your old albums whose artists have nailed it, and placed the most iconic of a collections music right there on the label.
Title tracks are, simply put, the song on an album that shares the name of the album itself. When a title track really does its job, it sets the theme for an entire album. A lesser used definition of a title track is a song that shares the name with the movie of which it is a part. There have been many movies which were made more memorable by a song as powerful as the movie itself.
To celebrate, dust off your old albums and revisit your favorite iconic rock anthems.

World Crohn’s and Colitis Day 

World Crohn’s and Colitis Day was created in 2007 by the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America. Crohn’s disease is a chronic inflammatory condition of the gastrointestinal tract. Ulcerative Colitis is not the same as Crohn’s Disease but is also a disease of the gastrointestinal tract. The symptoms of these two illnesses are quite similar, but the areas affected in the gastrointestinal tract (GI tract) are different. Crohn’s most commonly affects the end of the small bowel (the ileum) and the beginning of the colon, but it may affect any part of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract, from the mouth to the anus. Ulcerative colitis is limited to the colon, also called the large intestine. This link will give you more information about these two diseases.

National Taffy Day 

Taffy is a sweet treat made from boiling together sugar, corn syrup, water, butter, with flavorings and colorings. The mixture is then pulled and stretched and folded back over itself, and then re-stretched again until it is fluffy. Salt water taffy, which originated in Atlantic City, is the most common taffy. It is called such because it originally contained a small amount of salt water in the mixture. The flavors of taffy are endless. Most common are fruit flavors. My mother used to make taffy using vinegar. I know it sounds yucky but it was delicious. I remember buttering my hands and “pulling the taffy” with my brothers after it was cool enough to handle.

More Holidays

On This Date

  • In 1701 – In London, Captain William Kidd was hanged after being convicted of murder and piracy.
  • In 1788 – South Carolina became the eighth state to ratify U.S. Constitution.
  • In 1844 – Siyyid `Alí Muḥammad Shírází founded Bábism. The Báb, as he called himself, created the religion which was a forerunner of the Bahá’í Faith. His teachings were seen as a threat by the Islamic clergy, and his followers were brutally persecuted by the Persian government.
  • In 1846 – Arabella Mansfield (Belle Aurelia Babb) was born. She was the first woman in the United States to pass the bar exam, though she never used her law degree.
  • In 1868 – Frontiersman and soldier Christopher “Kit” Carson died.
  • In 1873 – Canada’s North West Mounted Police force was established. The organization’s name was changed to Royal Canadian Mounted Police in 1920.
  • In 1876 – Boston’s Joe Borden pitched the very first no-hitter in the history of the National League.
  • In 1895 – The New York Public Library was created with an agreement that combined the city’s existing Astor and Lenox libraries.
  • In 1900 – Civil War hero Sgt. William H. Carney became the first African-American to receive the Medal of Honor, 37 years after the Battle of Fort Wagner.
  • In 1922 – “Daylight Saving Time” was debated in the first debate ever to be heard on radio in Washington, DC.
  • In 1934 – In Bienville Parish, LA, Bonnie Parker, and Clyde Barrow were ambushed and killed by Texas Rangers. They were riding in a stolen Ford Deluxe.
  • In 1937 – Industrialist John D. Rockefeller died.
  • In 1949 – The Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany) was established. The proclamation of the Grundgesetz, Germany’s current constitution, marked the birth of the republic. The foundation of West Germany came four years after the demise of the Nazi regime and the end of World War II.
  • In 1951 – Delegates of the Dalai Lama signed the Seventeen Point Agreement. The contract affirmed Chinese sovereignty over Tibet. According to Tibetan officials, the document was signed under duress and is, therefore, invalid.
  • In 1960 – Israel announced the capture of Nazi Adolf Eichmann in Argentina.
  • In 1962 – The National Basketball Association (NBA) agreed to transfer the Philadelphia Warriors to San Francisco, CA. The team became the San Francisco Warriors (and later the Golden State Warriors).
  • In 1962 – Joe Pepitone of the New York Yankees set a major league baseball record by hitting two home runs in one inning.
  • In 1969 – The Who released the classic Rock Opera “Tommy”. The British rock band’s fourth album is considered the first musical work of the rock opera genre.
  • In 1985 – Thomas Patrick Cavanagh was sentenced to life in prison for trying to sell Stealth bomber secrets to the Soviet Union.
  • In 1992 – In Lisbon, Portugal, the United States and four former Soviet republics signed an agreement to implement the START missile reduction treaty that had been agreed to by the Soviet Union before it was dissolved.
  • In 1992 – The Italian mafia murdered Giovanni Falcone. Falcone, a judge, was the mafia’s most prominent adversary. After he, together with his wife and three bodyguards, fell victim to a car bomb, Falcone became a folk hero in Italy.
  • In 1995 – The Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City was demolished.
  • In 1999 – Gerry Bloch, at age 81, became the oldest climber to scale El Capitan in Yosemite National Park. He broke his own record that he set in 1986 when he was 68 years old.

Noteworthy Birthdays

If you were born on this date, Happy Birthday. You share your birthday with the following list of illustrious individuals – and about 20-million other people.

May 22nd – Elementary

May 22, 2017 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Good morning mystery lovers. Today is Monday, May 22, 2017. Today’s reasons to celebrate are:

Sherlock Holmes Day

Sherlock Holmes Day celebrates one of the most beloved fictional characters ever created. But why does he deserve a holiday in his honor? Elementary my dear Watson. Since his creation over a century ago, the character of Sherlock Holmes has garnered millions of fans worldwide. He is among the most renown fictional characters and has been portrayed on stage, in films, on television, and on the radio more than any other character in history. He is literally a literary icon.
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the author of the Sherlock Holmes stories, says the character was originally inspired by Joseph Bell, a surgeon at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh for whom Doyle had worked as an assistant. Like Holmes, Bell was famous for his ability to draw broad conclusions from minute observations. Francis “Tanky” Smith, a policeman and master of disguise who was Leicester’s first private detective, is also thought to have influenced the character. Doyle’s first Sherlock Holmes story first appeared in print in 1887 and continued to be published for the next forty years, until shortly before the author’s death. During this time, the detective had countless adventures, usually accompanied by his loyal friend and assistant, Dr. Watson.
To celebrate Sherlock Holmes Day, channel your “inner Sherlock” and play a rousing game or two of “Clue” with your family.

Buy a Musical Instrument Day 

No one knows for sure when the first musical instrument was invented, but historians believe that flutes made of animal bones date back 37,000 years. Today there are 6 main instrument categories – percussion, woodwinds, brass, strings, keyboard, and electronic.
Worldwide, the most played instrument is the piano, followed by the guitar and the drums. 21 million Americans play the piano – that’s more than all other instruments combined! Other popular instruments include the flute, ukulele, saxophone, clarinet, trombone, and violin. Playing a musical instrument can increase abilities in other areas. Children who play a musical instrument are shown to read at advanced levels, have larger vocabularies, and work better in teams.
Buy a Musical Instrument Day is pretty much a self-explanatory holiday. If you are a musician, today is the day to upgrade or add to your collection. If you have contemplated taking up a musical instrument, today might be the day to take the plunge and make the purchase. You are never too old to learn something new.

National Maritime Day 

National Maritime Day is a holiday celebrated in the United States. It was created by Congress in 1933 to recognize the maritime industry. The date of May 22 was chosen because it marks the date in 1819 that the American steamship Savannah set sail from Savannah, Georgia on the first ever transoceanic voyage under steam power.
National Maritime Day salutes those who serve in the United States Merchant Marine. The men and women of the United States Merchant Marine have made contributions to this country during war and peace since its infancy. They have participated in every war from the Revolution to the latest wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. They transport troops, supplies, and equipment to war zones, often at great peril. Take time out of your busy day to remember those selfless people who are currently at sea keeping you safe.

National Vanilla Pudding Day 

The sweet creamy dessert that we all know and love today has been around since the 19th century. Most culinary historians agree that our modern recipe evolved from custards, which date back to Ancient Rome.
Jell-O introduced its first line of instant pudding in the 1950’s. The advertising campaign announcing the new product promoted it as the “busy-day dessert.”
To celebrate National Vanilla Pudding Day, make some delicious homemade vanilla pudding from scratch, or from an instant mix. I think I will slice some bananas into mine, then pour the mixture into a pre-baked graham cracker crust and top it with whipped cream. I’ll call it Vanilla Pudding Cream Pie/with bananas – I’m such an innovator.

More Holidays

On This Date

  • In 1761 – In Philadelphia, the first life insurance policy was issued in the United States.
  • In 1819 – The steamship Savannah became the first steamship to cross the Atlantic Ocean.
  • In 1841 – Henry Kennedy received a patent for the first reclining chair.
  • In 1849 – Abraham Lincoln received a patent for the floating dry dock.
  • In 1868 – Near Marshfield, IN, The “Great Train Robbery” took place. The seven members of the Reno gang hauled in $96,000 in cash, gold, and bonds from the robbery.
  • In 1872 – The Amnesty Act restored civil rights to Southerners.
  • In 1892 – A British dentist invented the toothpaste tube.
  • In 1900 – The Associated Press was incorporated as a non-profit news cooperative in New York.
  • In 1906 – The Wright brothers were granted U.S. Patent 821393 – for “new and useful Improvements in Flying Machines”.
  • In 1955 – A scheduled dance to be headlined by Fats Domino was canceled by police in Bridgeport, Connecticut because “rock and roll dances might be featured.”
  • In 1955 – Jack Benny did his last live network radio broadcast after a run of 23 years.
  • In 1960 – The most violent earthquake ever in recorded history hit Chile. The Great Chilean Earthquake rated 9.5 on the moment magnitude scale. According to estimates, between 2230 and 6000 people were killed.
  • In 1967 – “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” premiered on PBS.
  • In 1972 – President Nixon became the first United States President to visit Russia. He met with Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev.
  • In 1972 – The island of Ceylon adopted a new constitution and became the republic of Sri Lanka.
  • In 1977 – Janet Guthrie set the fastest time of the second weekend of qualifying, becoming the first woman to earn a starting spot in the Indianapolis 500 since its inception in 1911.
  • In 1980 – The arcade game Pac-Man was released. The game featuring a dot-munching round yellow figure moving through a maze has become one of the best-known video games in history. It was produced by Namco.
  • In 1992 – Johnny Carson hosted NBC’s “Tonight Show” for the last time. He had been the host for 30 years.
  • In 1997 – Kelly Flinn, the U.S. Air Force’s first female bomber pilot certified for combat, accepted a general discharge. She thereby avoided court-martial on charges of adultery, lying and disobeying an order.
  • In 1998 – A federal judge said that Secret Service agents could be compelled to testify before a grand jury in Monica Lewinsky investigation concerning President Clinton.
  • In 2002 – Chandra Levy’s remains were found in Washington, DC’s Rock Creek Park. She was last seen on April 30, 2001. California Congressman Gary Condit was questioned in the case due to his relationship with Levy.
  • In 2003 – At the Colonial Golf Club in Fort Worth, TX, Annika Sorenstam became the first woman to play on the PGA tour in 58 years. She ended the day at 1-over par.
  • In 2010 – The worst air crash involving a Boeing 737 killed 158 people. Air India Express Flight 812 overshot the runway on landing at Mangalore International Airport. It fell over a cliff and burst into flames. The 737 is the world’s most widely flown aircraft.
  • In 2012 – The world’s tallest tower opened to the public. At 2080 feet, the Tokyo Skytree in Japan’s capital city is also the second tallest structure in the world after Burj Khalifa in Dubai. Its prime purpose is relaying TV and radio signals.

Noteworthy Birthdays

If you were born on this date, Happy Birthday. You share your birthday with the following list of illustrious individuals – and about 20-million other people.

May 21st – I Need a Patch For That

May 21, 2017 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Good morning patch proponents. Today is Sunday, May 21, 2017.  Today’s reasons to celebrate are:

I Need a Patch For That Day

I Need A Patch For That Day, I think, celebrates patches of all kinds (the information on this holiday is sketchy at best).
There are many different types of patches. There are the patches that military personnel and others wear on their uniforms. There are patches for our computers when software needs to be updated. Before we became a “throw away” society, there were patches for our clothes. There are even eye-patches that make pirates appear more formidable.
The one common thread in my research today, however, was medical patches. These days, there are patches for any number of ailments. There are patches that help you stop smoking, help you lose weight, administer pain meds, and even administer birth control.
Wouldn’t it be nice if there were a patch for everything? C’mon scientists. Get to work on developing a patch to fix “stupid”. Or how about one to instill common sense in politicians and bureaucrats. Sign me up for the patch that will make me irresistible to women, and the one that will double my monthly income.

National Wait Staff Day

National Wait Staff Day pays homage to those who serve your meals when you dine out. A server can “make or break” your dining experience. A good server will not hover, but always be attentive. A bad server, one who is surly, inattentive, or who needs a refresher course in personal hygiene can ruin your meal (and your special occasion if that is the reason you are dining out).
With that said, everyone can have a bad day once in a while, so take that into consideration. The wait staff at most restaurants make minimum wage or less, so they rely upon gratuities to supplement their income. The average ‘tip’ these days is about 18%…and that is fair.
Having worked a couple of jobs where the only compensation I received was derived from tips, I tend to be a little more generous. I usually tip 20% plus. I take the total of the amount due, divide by ten, and multiply by two. I then add that amount to the total on the bill and round up to the nearest whole dollar. [For instance: During a recent dining out experience, my total bill came to $23.47. Divide that by 10 and the sum is $2.347 (I round up to $2.35). Multiply $2.35 by 2 and the sum is $4.70. Add $4.70 to $23.47 and you get $28.17. I then round that amount up to $29.00, so the tip was $5.53 or about 24%]. My server(s) (I had dinner right at shift change so I had two) were both excellent. However, if the service is abominable, I will tip accordingly. So, if you dine out today, and your server is at all competent, be a little more generous with your gratuity. You could also wish them a Happy Waiter/Waitress/Wait Staff Day.

American Red Cross Founder’s Day

American Red Cross Founder’s Day marks the creation of the American chapter of the Red Cross, in Washington D.C. on this date in 1881, by Clara Barton. The American Red Cross is an organization which is dedicated to helping people in need throughout the United States and, in association with other Red Cross networks, throughout the world. Barton first heard of the Swiss-inspired global Red Cross network while visiting Europe following the Civil War. Returning home, she campaigned for an American Red Cross and for ratification of the Geneva Convention protecting the war-injured, which the United States ratified in 1882. She led the organization for 23 years, during which time the Red Cross conducted its first domestic and overseas disaster relief efforts, and aided the United States military during the Spanish-American War. The Red Cross received its first congressional charter in 1900 and a second in 1905, the year after Barton resigned from the organization. This charter, which remains in effect today, sets forth the purposes of the organization which includes giving relief to and serving as a medium of communication between members of the American armed forces and their families and providing national and international disaster relief and mitigation.

National Memo Day

I guess that I should begin by defining ‘memo’. A memo is a term shortened from the word memorandum, which is a short note designating something to be remembered – An informal message between two people.
It seems then that a memo can mean anything from: Your boss sending a reminder about the upcoming company picnic or a note between two co-workers at a company about an upcoming project, to the “post-it” note that your wife leaves you on the refrigerator reminding you to pick up the dry-cleaning on your way home from work, or to take out the trash.
Now, why is there a special day for memos? The answer to that question is “no one knows”. This is one of those “holidays” that just “is”. In all of my research, I can find no logical reason for today being designated as Memo Day, or perhaps I didn’t get the memo because it seems that the creators of this “holiday” forgot to send the ‘memo’. You can celebrate this holiday by writing a “memo” to yourself to forget about this “holiday” next year.

National Strawberries and Cream Day

I hope that you heeded my advice from yesterday and saved some of those strawberries that you picked. The simple combination of fresh sliced strawberries and homemade whipped cream has been a popular dish for centuries. In fact, in medieval England, it was customary for newlyweds to enjoy strawberries and soured cream for their wedding breakfast.
Strawberries are the first fruit to ripen every spring. They contain high levels of Vitamin C, fiber, folic acid, and potassium, so besides being sweet, juicy and delicious, they probably won’t kill you either.
If you’re feeling adventurous, there are many interesting variations on the classic strawberries and cream recipe. Try flavoring your whipped cream with amaretto liqueur or substituting a combination of fat-free sour cream and brown sugar instead. For a more elaborate dessert, put together a trifle with alternating layers of fruit, cream, and a sweet pastry such as ladyfinger cookies.
I will have a strawberry waffle with whipped cream for lunch. That’ll have to do.

World Baking Day 

World Baking Day is celebrated annually on the third Sunday in May. It is the holiday to dig out your rolling-pin, heat up your oven, and prepare something delicious. Whether you choose to bake a batch of cookies, some brownies, a cake or cupcakes, or a nice crusty loaf of bread, today is the day to bake something…then share it with your family, neighbors, or friends.
World Baking Day was created to spread the joy of baking all around the world, especially to those who perhaps don’t bake too often and are not particularly experienced at it. This holiday is meant to show people just how much fun it can be to make a cake or some cookies, and that baking can be a great way to spend time with family and friends. And, as a bonus, you get to eat what you’ve created.

More Holidays 

National Take Your Parents to the Playground Day

Rapture Party Day

Sister Maria Hummel Day

Stepmother’s Day – Observed on the Sunday after Mother’s Day.

World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue & Development 

On This Date

  • In 1819 – Bicycles were first seen in the U.S. in New York City. They were originally known as “swift walkers.”
  • In 1832 – The Democratic Party held its first national convention.
  • In 1881 – The United States Lawn Tennis Association was formed in New York City.
  • In 1891 – Peter Jackson and Jim Corbett fought for 61 rounds only to end in a draw.
  • In 1904 – FIFA, the world governing body of association football (soccer), was founded. The Fédération Internationale de Football Association is responsible for the organization of the World Cup, which is one of the world’s most viewed sporting events.
  • In 1906 – Louis H. Perlman received his patent for the demountable tire-carrying rim.
  • In 1924 – Fourteen-year-old Bobby Franks was murdered in a “thrill killing” committed by Nathan Leopold Jr. and Richard Loeb. The killers were students at the University of Chicago.
  • In 1932 – Amelia Earhart became the first woman to fly solo nonstop across the Atlantic. Her disappearance on an attempted round-the-world flight five years later is one of the most discussed unsolved mysteries in the history of flight.
  • In 1934 – Oskaloosa, IA, became the first city in the U.S. to fingerprint all of its citizens.
  • In 1941 – The first U.S. ship, the SS Robin Moor, was sunk by a U-boat.
  • In 1945 – Lauren Bacall and Humphrey Bogart were married.
  • In 1947 – Joe DiMaggio and five of his New York Yankee teammates were fined $100 because they had not fulfilled contract requirements to do promotional duties for the team.
  • In 1951 – The 9th Street Show opened in New York City. The ground-breaking art exhibition showing works by artists like Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning is considered the birth hour of the artistic avant-garde referred to as the New York School.
  • In 1956 – The U.S. exploded the first airborne hydrogen bomb in the Pacific Ocean over Bikini Atoll.
  • In 1970 – The National Guard was mobilized to quell disturbances at Ohio State University.
  • In 1979 – Violent clashes followed the lenient sentencing for Harvey Milk’s murderer. Milk, the first openly gay United States politician, had been shot and killed together with San Francisco Mayor George Moscone. The assassin, Dan White, was convicted of voluntary manslaughter only, triggering the White Night Riots.
  • In 1982 – The British landed in the Falkland Islands and fighting began.
  • In 1991 – Former Prime Minister of India, Rajiv Gandhi, was assassinated. The attacker was a woman believed to be linked the Sri Lankan separatist militant organization, the Tamil Tigers. At least 14 people lost their lives in the suicide bombing.
  • In 1998 – An expelled student, Kipland Kinkel, in Springfield, OR, killed 2 people and wounded 25 others with a semi-automatic rifle. Police also discovered that the boy had killed his parents before the rampage.
  • In 1998 – In Miami, FL, five abortion clinics were attacked by a butyric acid attacker.

Noteworthy Birthdays

If you were born on this date, Happy Birthday. You share your birthday with the following list of illustrious individuals – and about 20-million other people.

 

 

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