September 21st – Fore! It’s Miniature Golf Day

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

Good morning miniature linksters. Today is Thursday, September 21, 2017. Today’s reasons to celebrate are:

Miniature Golf Day

Last May, we celebrated National Miniature Golf Day and I went into some detail about the origins of miniature golf in Scotland. This Miniature Golf Day is apparently a separate holiday, but with the same goal – to promote miniature golf.
The earlier versions of miniature golf in Scotland fell into a few broad categories, including the “pitch and putt,” the “regulation par-3,” and the “executive.” All used a short driver along with a putter and kept the same design of the larger courses: sand traps, hills, ponds, and trees.
When miniature golf moved to America, the short driver was eliminated and just the putter was used. This meant that the sand traps, trees, and ponds also went away. The first standardized miniature golf course in America was the Thistle Dhu (“This’ll Do”) course which opened in Pinehurst, North Carolina in 1916, and the miniature golf craze began. These early courses didn’t have any of the obstacles with which we are familiar today, just rolls, banks, and curves, with an occasional pipe thrown in for good measure. Courses sprouted up all across America in the next decade, but the Great Depression brought it to a halt in the 1930’s, and by the end of the decade, nearly all minigolf courses in the United States were closed and/or demolished.
After WWII, miniature golf saw a resurgence. These post-war miniature golf courses featured the landscaping of the pre-depression courses, but also added some of the obstacles, like windmills, castles, and wishing wells that we know and love/hate today. To this day, no one knows for sure why the obstacles were added.
These days, there are miniature golf courses all over the world, but nowhere is it more popular than here in America. Miniature golf can be enjoyed by all ages and genders and it is a great way to spend some quality time with family and/or friends – so celebrate Miniature Golf Day by playing a round (or two) today.

World Alzheimer’s Day 

Alzheimer’s disease is often called a family disease because the chronic stress of watching a loved one slowly decline affects everyone. World Alzheimer’s Day endeavors to raise awareness about Alzheimer’s and dementia. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia, a group of disorders that impairs mental functioning. Alzheimer’s disease is the sixth-leading cause of death in the United States and the only cause of death among the top 10 in the United States that cannot be prevented, cured or even slowed.  With the increases in life spans and baby boomers coming of age, support for Alzheimer’s research is more critical than ever. Currently, about 5.4 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s.

International Banana Festival

International Banana Festival has its roots on the Kentucky-Tennessee border in the twin cities of Fulton, KY and South Fulton, TN. With the creation of refrigerated boxcars in 1880, tropical fruits like bananas, that previously weren’t available in the Midwest, were being transported from the tropics. Back then The United Fruit Co (now Chiquita) began shipping bananas from South America via ship to New Orleans. Once there, they were loaded onto rail cars with blocks of ice to keep them fresh for the trip up north. Fulton had the only ice house along the route to New Orleans to Chicago so the trains always stopped there to refill the ice. Fulton became known as the “The Banana Capital of America” or “Banana crossroads”. At one point 70% off all U.S. bananas passed through Fulton. In the late 1800’s, Fulton started having International Banana Festival to celebrate this fruit and their new-found claim to fame.
Today we celebrate bananas because they are a good source of potassium, manganese, Vitamin B6, Vitamin C, and fiber. Bananas are a favorite of young and old alike. Athletes especially love bananas because they are one of the best sources of quick energy.
Author’s Note: The banana is an herb plant, not a tree.

National Pecan Cookie Day

National Pecan Cookie Day is celebrated in America each year on September 21st.
Pecans are an excellent source of protein, unsaturated fats, and healthy antioxidants that help reduce cholesterol. Pecan trees are native to the southern United States and are the only nut-tree native to America, Pecan trees are a member of the hickory family and are in the same family as walnuts.
There are more than 1,000 varieties of pecan in the world, and what better way to enjoy some pecans than in a cookie. Pecan cookies can be enjoyed any time of day. Whether you prefer butter pecan, caramel pecan, orange pecan, or maple pecan cookies, enjoy a delicious treat today in honor of National Pecan Cookie Day. Make a batch of pecan cookies at home, or buy some at your local supermarket today.

More Holidays  

On This Date

  • In 1792 – The French National Convention voted to abolish the monarchy.
  • In 1784 – “The Pennsylvania Packet and Daily Advertiser” was published for the first time in Philadelphia. It was the first daily paper in America.
  • In 1893 – Frank Duryea took what is believed to be the first gasoline-powered automobile for a test drive. The “horseless carriage” was designed by Frank and Charles Duryea.
  • In 1897 – The New York Sun ran the “Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus” editorial. It was in response to a letter from 8-year-old Virginia O’Hanlon.
  • In 1931 – Britain went off the gold standard.
  • In 1937 – J.R.R. Tolkien’s “The Hobbit” was first published. The Hobbit, or There and Back Again is a young adult fantasy novel that follows the adventures of the hobbit Bilbo Baggins as he traverses through Middle Earth to find treasure guarded by a dragon named Smaug.
  • In 1942 – The Boeing B-29 Superfortress made its maiden flight. The bomber was used extensively by the US in World War II and the Korean War. The two planes – Enola Gay and Boxcar – that dropped atomic bombs on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were from the silver plate series of Boeing B-29s.
  • In 1949 – Communist leaders proclaimed The People’s Republic of China.
  • In 1957 – “Perry Mason”, the television series, made its debut on CBS-TV. The show was on for 9 years.
  • In 1961 – Antonio Abertondo swam the English Channel (in both directions) in 24 hours and 25 minutes.
  • In 1961 – The Boeing CH-47 Chinook helicopter made its maiden flight. The American-made helicopter has been used by the US military in a variety of conflict-related operations including during the recent wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. It has also been often used for medical evacuation and search and rescue operations during natural disasters around the world.
  • In 1964 – Malta gained its independence from the Britain. The southern European island country came under British control in 1814 as part of the Treaty of Paris. The country initially retained the Queen of England as its head of state but declared itself a republic on December 13, 1974.
  • In 1966 – The Soviet probe Zond 5 returned to Earth. The spacecraft completed the first unmanned round-trip flight to the moon.
  • In 1970 – “NFL Monday Night Football” made its debut on ABC-TV. The game was between the Cleveland Browns and the New York Jets. The Browns won 31-21.
  • In 1973 – Henry Kissinger was confirmed by the U.S. Senate to become 56th Secretary of State. He was the first naturalized citizen to hold the office of Secretary of State.
  • In 1981 – The Senate confirmed Sandra Day O’Connor to be the first female justice on the Supreme Court.
  • In 1985 – North and South Korea opened their borders for their family reunion program.
  • In 1993 – Russian President Boris N. Yeltsin announced that he was ousting the Communist-dominated Congress. The action was effectively seizing all state power.
  • In 1996 – The board of all-male Virginia Military Institute voted to admit women.
  • In 2013 – The Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya was attacked. In a daring siege, militants of the extremist group al-Shabaab took over the Mall. 63 shoppers were killed during the attack that lasted a few hours, and before the Kenyan security forces rescued the hostages, 4 terrorists were also killed. Al-Shabaab declared that it had undertaken the attack as retaliation for the presence of Kenyan armed forces in Somalia.

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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September 20th – What Gibberish!

September 20, 2017 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Good morning fans of unintelligible nonsense. Today is Wednesday, September 20, 2017. Today’s reasons to celebrate are:

Gibberish Day

Dictionary.com defines gibberish as meaningless, unintelligible, obscure, pretentious, or technical talk or writing. Gibberish may be random speech sounds that mean nothing, or it may be speech that means something, but is a specific jargon that not many people understand. The word gibberish was first used in the early 16th century, and the name may be an onomatopoeia of what unintelligible speech may sound like.
Some comedians make a career out of speaking gibberish. The same holds true for our government officials and their minions. With the daily dose of claptrap emanating from our President and the so-called “mainstream media”, I can think of no more appropriate time to celebrate Gibberish Day.
Gibberish Day affords us the opportunity to join in and celebrate with a little gibberish of your own, and celebrating Gibberish Day couldn’t be easier — Simply sprinkle a little gibberish into your conversations today. If you are unclear about exactly what speaking gibberish entails, merely watch the news on your favorite network or listen to talk radio.

National School Backpack Awareness Day

When I was growing up we carried our books and binders under our arms, and the kids that wore a backpack to school were the ones that “got the wedgies”. But time marches on and things evolve. Today, backpacks are the rule rather than the exception.
National School Backpack Awareness Day is observed the third Wednesday of September. It was created by the American Occupational Therapy Organization. Though this may seem like a frivolous holiday, nothing could be further from the truth.
The American Occupational Therapy Organization created this holiday as a warning about some of the detrimental effects that improperly worn backpacks can cause. Improperly used backpacks may cause injury muscles and joints which can lead to more severe back, neck and shoulder pain and can cause problems with posture as well. A general rule of thumb is: “Pack it light and wear it right.” Here are a few things that you should be doing to ensure that your child’s backpack is safe for them to carry.

  • Your child’s backpack should weigh no more than 15% of their body weight. For example, a child weighing 80 pounds should be carrying no more than 12 pounds in their backpack.
  • Check what your children are carrying to and from school. Make sure the items are necessary and that the heaviest items are closest to the child’s back.
  • Be sure a child’s backpack is the right size. It should fit their back, with the bottom of the pack resting in the curve of the lower back area.
  • Select a pack with well-padded shoulder straps. The neck and shoulders have many blood vessels and nerves. If too much pressure is applied, the result can be pain and a tingling in the neck, arms, and hands.
  • Make sure that your child uses both shoulder straps. Slinging a pack over one shoulder can cause leaning to one side. This curves the spine and causes pain or discomfort.
  • Adjust the straps so the backpack fits snugly to the back. A pack that hangs loosely can pull the body backward and strain muscles. Waist belts are an excellent feature, as they help to distribute weight more evenly.

Author’s Note: Adults, the same rules listed above pertain to you too, not only for backpacks but for purses and luggage as well. Do you really need to lug around a purse that will easily conceal a Volkswagen Beetle or a carry-on bag that would strain the muscles of an avid weightlifter?

National String Cheese Day

National String Cheese Day celebrates, for some odd reason, string cheese and is a new holiday being celebrated for the first time this year. Galbani Cheese, with the intention of creating a way to celebrate America’s love of String Cheese, submitted National String Cheese Day to the registrar at National Day Calendar, who declared September 20th to be National String Cheese Day.
Food historians believe that String Cheese was invented by Frank Baker of Baker Cheese in St. Cloud, Wisconsin, in 1976. Baker Cheese had originally made cheddar cheese, but switched to making only mozzarella, to fill the demand for cheese for pizza that had been fueled by the proliferation of take-out pizza establishments in the Midwest. Originally the mozzarella was made in large loaves or blocks, but customers wanted to snack on the cheese when they weren’t eating pizza and needed something more convenient. Frank Baker didn’t want to get into the market of cubed or shredded mozzarella cheese, which other companies were already doing, and decided to tinker until he came up with something different. His original string cheese looked like a twisted rope, and he tried it out at bars and parties to see if it was liked. Within a few years, the cheese took its, now familiar, cylindrical form. He also found that individual packaging for each string of cheese lengthened its shelf life, and it became popular across the country. It is possible that other companies came up with string cheese around the same time as Baker, but there is no specific evidence of this.
Whether you call it String Cheese, Snack Cheese or Cheese Sticks…there’s no denying that you also call it delicious. Pack it for a picnic. Have it on a hike. Pass it out for a team snack. And of course, no lunch is complete without some String Cheese.
String Cheese is a fun, easy and protein-packed food that is easily portable, so it’s popular with both kids and adults. Usually made with mozzarella, String Cheese melts easily when heated making it an excellent addition to recipes, too.
Perhaps the most enjoyable part of String Cheese is deciding how to eat it. Most people go for the classic “peel down and chow down” method—separating each stick into thin strands. (You have to admit, it is kind of fun to play with your food without recrimination). Others prefer the “get down to business” approach of removing the wrapper and biting into the stick. Whichever method you choose, celebrate National String Cheese Day by indulging in some String Cheese.

National Punch Day 

Oddly enough, it celebrates the meaning of the word “punch”. The word “punch” allegedly comes from the Hindustani word “panch,” which means “five.” The drink received this name because it was made with five ingredients: spirits (originally a fermented drink called arrack), lemons or limes, sugar, water, and tea or spices. Sailors and employees of the British East India Company brought punch from India to the United Kingdom in the early 17th century, and from there it spread to other European countries, and then to the West Indies and the North American Colonies. It is now one of the most popular party drinks in the world.
Recipes for today’s punches are similar to those from the 17th century. Punch is often served in a large punch bowl, and an alcohol-free version is popular at children’s parties.
Today there are hundreds of different punch recipes… a quick online search will prove it. Many of them still incorporate the five key ingredients: base (alcohol), citrus, sugar, water, and spice.
To celebrate this holiday, make a batch of your favorite punch today. Be sure to make a “kid-friendly” batch also so your whole family can celebrate with you.
Author’s Note: Soft drink manufacturers today distribute many types of “fruit punch” beverages. Typically they are red and despite the name, they only contain a small fraction of actual fruit juice with the major constituents being sugar or corn syrup, citric acid, and artificial flavors.

Pepperoni Pizza Day

Pepperoni Pizza Day for some strange reason, celebrates one the mainstays of pizza culture, the Pepperoni Pizza. Pepperoni Pizza is the single most popular variety of pizza in the world, most especially in America. Pepperoni Pizza Day celebrates possibly the best pizza of all time.
Though pizza has been around for centuries and it is thought that it originated in ancient Sardinia, what we know as pizza today originated about 2000 years ago with Roman Soldiers who added olive oil and cheese to Matzah bread. The first time the word ‘pizza’ came into use was in the 16th-Century, describing a food thought fit only for peasants. In 1889, Raffaele Esposito presented the Queen consort of Italy a “Pizza Margherita”, flatbread topped with basil, mozzarella, and tomatoes…colors and flavors selected to represent the Italian Flag. After being served to nobility, the popularity of the pizza grew and it quickly became one of the most popular foods in the world.
To celebrate Pepperoni Pizza Day, you don’t have to settle on just plain Pepperoni Pizza. You can add as many different toppings as you like…as long as the main topping is Pepperoni.

Another Holiday

On This Date

  • In 1519 – Portuguese navigator Ferdinand Magellan left Spain to find a route to the Spice Islands of Indonesia. Magellan was killed during the trip, but one of his ships eventually made the journey.
  • In 1870 – The Papal States came under the control of Italian troops, leading to the unification of Italy.
  • In 1881 – Chester A. Arthur became the 21st president of the United States. President James A. Garfield had been assassinated the day before.
  • In 1884 – The Equal Rights Party was formed in San Francisco, CA.
  • In 1904 – Wilbur Wright made the first circular flight. Wright, who with his brother Orville, is credited with inventing the first airplane, made a complete circle in 1 minute and 16 seconds on the Wright Flyer II.
  • In 1946 – The first Cannes Film Festival premiered. The original premiere was delayed in 1939 due to World War II.
  • In 1962 – James Meredith, a black student, was blocked from enrolling at the University of Mississippi by Governor Ross R. Barnett. Meredith was later admitted.
  • In 1963 – President John F. Kennedy proposed a joint U.S.-Soviet expedition to the moon in a speech to the U.N. General Assembly.
  • In 1973 – Billie Jean King won the “Battle of the Sexes”. The mixed gender tennis match between top tennis player Bobby Riggs and Billie Jean King was held in Houston, Texas after Riggs won another mixed gender match against Margaret Court earlier in the year. The matches were prompted by Riggs’ comments that even at an age of 55, he could beat any female tennis player. King beat Riggs and took home the $100,000 prize money. The match was and still is one of the most viewed tennis matches on television – it was watched by about 90 million people around the world.
  • In 1977 – The first of the “boat people” arrived in San Francisco from Southeast Asia under a new U.S. resettlement program.
  • In 1982 – President Ronald Reagan announced that the U.S., France, and Italy were going to send peacekeeping troops back to Beirut.
  • In 1984 – “The Cosby Show” premiered on NBC-TV. The popular television sitcom followed the lives of a Brooklyn-based African-American family called the Huxtables. The show ran for 8 years on NBC and was largely based on the stand-up comedy of Bill Cosby, who played the role of Heathcliff “Cliff” Huxtable, the father in the show.
  • In 1989 – F.W. de Klerk was sworn in as president of South Africa.
  • In 1991 – United Nations weapons inspectors left for Iraq in a renewed search for Iraqi weapons of mass destruction.
  • In 1995 – The House of Representatives voted to drop the national speed limit. This allowed the states to decide their own speed limits.
  • In 2001 – President George W. Bush declared the War on Terror. The global military campaign against terrorism was first declared in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks in the United States. The phrase was used by President Bush in a speech given to the United States Congress.
  • The official US military policy of “don’t ask, don’t tell” ended. The policy was instituted by the administration of Bill Clinton in 1994. Under the policy, openly gay personnel were not allowed to serve in the United States military, but they could serve as long as they did not reveal their LGBT status.

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.

September 19th – Arrr!

September 19, 2017 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Ahoy, scallywags. Today be Tuesday, September 19, 2017. Yer reasons ta celebrate t’day be:

International Talk Like A Pirate Day

Back in ’95 a pair o’ landlubbers, named John Baur ‘n Mark Summers, were playin’ racquetball. Fer some reason they began natterin’ t’ each other like pirates. Aft they were finished, they came up wit’ th’ idea t’ make natterin’ like pirates an annual event. Fer no particular reason, they decided on September, 19th as th’ date fer thar annual celebration, ‘n Talk Like A Pirate Day was born.
Th’ international part came about when they wrote t’ syndicated columnist Dave Barry ‘n he featured it in his column (on September 8, 2002). Soon they were hearin’ from a bunch o’ scallywags from all o’er th’ world.
T’ help ye celebrate International Natter Like A Pirate Day, I provide this link. Jus’ type in wha’ ye wants t’ be translated ‘n ’twill do all th’ work fer ye. Now, belay yer dillydallyin’ n’ start natterin’ like a pirate ye bunch o’ landlubbin’ louts.

National Woman Road Warrior Day

National Woman Road Warrior Day is a day of recognition for the nation’s traveling businesswomen. Like their male counterparts, Woman Road Warriors open and close deals, make sales, give presentations, attend or lead seminars and maintain that all-important in-person presence in the often impersonal corporate world. But simultaneously, many are often charged with keeping their families on track at home, especially their babies, toddlers and multitasking school-age children, and nurture them, even from a long distance.

National IT (information technology) Professionals Day

National IT Professionals Day is observed annually every third Tuesday in September and is set aside to honor the venerable geeks of the world we all rely on every day to keep us connected to the worldwide web. IT professionals are the unsung hero of modern business but are often under-appreciated. National IT Professionals Day was submitted by SolarWinds, a provider of powerful and affordable IT management software, in March 2015 and proclaimed a National day by the registrar of National Day Calendar.
Whether it be desktops, laptops, mobile devices, applications, servers, networks, databases or cybersecurity, IT professionals keep business humming. However, there is often a lack of understanding by business leaders and end users of the important role they play and the difficulties and complexities associated with modern IT.
If you’re an end-user, you can celebrate National IT (information technology) Professionals Day by simply saying thank you to the IT professionals that make your life easier. Additionally, you can recognize that your IT professionals provide an invaluable service in today’s always-on, always-connected world.

Get Ready Day

Get Ready Day is celebrated annually on the third Tuesday of September. It urges you to be prepared for any emergency. With the recent hurricanes in Texas and Florida and the wildfires in the Western United States, Get Ready Day couldn’t be more relevant.
Being prepared to deal with an emergency is important for everyone and that is what Get Ready Day is all about. It encourages individuals, families, and communities to consider what is required in the event of natural disasters, pandemic illnesses, infectious diseases, and other crisis events.
Get Ready Day was first established in the mid-2000’s by the Public Health Association and the Get Ready website has a wealth of information to help those that are interested.

Take a Loved One to the Doctor Day

Take A Loved One to the Doctor is observed annually the third Tuesday of September and is a targeted campaign to raise health awareness in the Black community. This initiative was launched in 2002 by the Tom Joyner Morning Show and the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services Administration. Since then, Tom continues to encourage his listeners to be proactive about their health by making appointments for themselves and a loved one to visit health professionals.
With a daily listening audience of over 8-million people, Mr. Joyner’s “Take a Loved One to the Doctor Day” grew from one day into a year-long health awareness campaign. It now occurs from January-December on the “Get Well Wednesdays” segment on Tom Joyner Morning Show featuring health topics and expert advice on-air to further generate awareness and action.

National Butterscotch Pudding Day

Butterscotch is a type of confectionery whose primary ingredients are brown sugar and butter, although other ingredients such as corn syrup, cream, vanilla, and salt are supplementary ingredients in most recipes. According to a 1848 newspaper article, the original recipe for making Doncaster butterscotch is one pound of butter, one pound of sugar and a quarter of a pound of treacle, a mild mixture of molasses and corn syrup, boiled together.”
Butterscotch is similar to toffee except that it is heated to a higher temperature (270 to 289 °F, the soft-crack stage). The term butterscotch is also often used for the ‘flavor’ of brown sugar and butter together, even where actual confection butterscotch is not involved; for example butterscotch pudding, butterscotch ice cream topping, and butterscotch chips.
To celebrate this holiday, simply enjoy some butterscotch pudding; either homemade or from a package mix.

On This Date

  • In 1777 – The Battle of Saratoga was won by American soldiers during the Revolutionary War.
  • In 1796 – President George Washington’s farewell address was published.
  • In 1876 – Melville R. Bissell patented the carpet sweeper.
  • In 1881 – James Garfield, 20th President of the United States, was assassinated.
  • In 1893 – In New Zealand, the Electoral Act 1893 became law, giving all women in New Zealand the right to vote.
  • In 1944 – The Moscow Armistice ended the Continuation War. The peace treaty was signed between the Soviet Union, United Kingdom, and Finland. It put an end to the conflict between the USSR and Finland between 1941 and 1944. The war was overshadowed by the more significant conflict, WWII.
  • In 1955 – Argentina President Juan Peron was ousted after a revolt by the army and navy.
  • In 1957 – The United States conducted its first underground nuclear test. The test took place in the Nevada desert.
  • In 1959 – Nikita Khrushchev was not allowed to visit Disneyland due to security reasons. He reacted angrily.
  • In 1960 – Cuban leader Fidel Castro, in New York to visit the United Nations, checked out of the Shelburne Hotel angrily after a dispute with the management.
  • In 1970 – “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” premiered on CBS-TV.
  • In 1973 – Carl XVI succeeded his grandfather King Gustaf VI Adolf as the King of Sweden. Sweden is a constitutional monarchy, where the monarch is the ceremonial head of state. In 1980, Swedish law was changed to allow the firstborn of a monarch to become the crown’s heir apparent, irrespective of their gender.
  • In 1982 – Scott Fahlman became the first person to use “:-)” in an online message.
  • In 1983 – Saint Kitts and Nevis gained their Independence from the British Crown. The first Europeans set foot on the Island country in the West Indies in the late 15th century during an expedition led by Columbus. In 1713, the control over the islands was passed from the French to the British.
  • In 1984 – China and Britain completed a draft agreement transferring Hong Kong from British to Chinese rule by 1997.
  • In 1986 – United States health officials announced that AZT, though an experimental drug, would be made available to AIDS patients.
  • In 1988 – Israel successfully launched the Horizon-I test satellite.
  • In 1994 – United States troops entered Haiti peacefully to enforce the return of exiled President Jean-Bertrand Aristide.
  • In 1995 – Agronomist and entrepreneur Orville Redenbacher died.
  • In 1995 – The Senate passed a welfare overhaul bill.
  • In 1995 – The commander of American forces in Japan and the United States ambassador apologized for the rape of a schoolgirl committed by three U.S. servicemen.
  • In 2006 – A Military coup overthrew the elected government in Thailand. Forces loyal to General Sonthi Boonyaratglin overthrew the elected government of Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra and dissolved the parliament and the constitution.
  • In 2010 – The Oil rig Deepwater Horizon was declared sealed after a 3-month long spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Thought to be the biggest accident in the oil and gas industry, the Deepwater Horizon spill or the BP oil spill began on April 20, 1010, when an explosion destroyed the rig and killed 11 people.

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.

September 18th – Air Force Birthday

September 18, 2017 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Good morning military history fans. Today is Monday, September 18, 2017. Today’s reasons to celebrate are:

Air Force Birthday

Today marks the 70th anniversary of the official founding of the United States Air Force as a separate branch of military service, however, the Air Force has existed considerably longer than that. Although the US Air Force did not exist as a separate and independent branch of the military, from the time that the U.S. Army bought their first airplane back in 1909 until 1947, there were military units dedicated to aircraft. Through their many incarnations; Aeronautical Section, Signal Corps (1909), Aviation Section, Signal Corps (1914), United States Army Air Service (1918), United States Army Air Corps (1926), and United States Army Air Forces (1941), these units played a vital role in military history.
WWII illustrated the value of airpower and air-superiority, and the need to change the basic organization of the US Military Forces. The result was the creation of a single Department of Defense with a strong Joint Chiefs of Staff with Army, Navy, and Air Force chiefs.  In 1947 President Truman signed the National Security Act which established this new defense organization, and along with it the creation of the US Air Force as an independent service, equal to the US Army and US Navy.
In the years since its creation, the USAF has proved the wisdom of that decision. The US Air Force emerged quickly and began to create its own history and heritage. In 1949, the flight of the “Lucky Lady II” demonstrated the Air Force’s capability to fly, non-stop around the world, showing it could take off from the U.S. and drop bombs anywhere in the world. From 1950 to 1953, the USAF dominated the skies over Korea in the first completely “all-jet” aircraft conflict. In 1954, the B-52 Stratofortress was introduced to the inventory. It has been involved in every conflict since. In the early 1960’s, the USAF developed and deployed Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles (ICBM’s) as a major component of the aerial defense capability of the United States. In the late 1960’s and early 1970’s, the USAF played a vital role in the Vietnam war. The 1970’s saw major advances in weaponry; the development of laser-guided bombs and TV-guided air to ground missiles. Air mobility took a major step forward with the introduction of the C-5 Galaxy in the Air Force Inventory.  Other aircraft systems introduced in this decade were the F-15, A-10, AWACS, and F-16. In the 1980’s, stealth technology led to the development of the F-117 and the B-1 bomber. In the 1990’s, the Air Force underwent a major reorganization with the formation of Air Combat Command, Air Mobility Command, and Air Force Material Command to meet the needs of the ever-changing needs of modern warfare. It played a major role in the swift defeat of the Iraqi military forces in the first Persian Gulf War, supported the war in the Balkans, and the US intervention Operation Uphold Democracy in Haiti.
Today, the USAF still leads the way in the development of tactics and technology. The Expeditionary Air Force concept was a major transition in how the Air Force employed forces. The Global War on Terrorism brought the USAF into “Operation Enduring Freedom” and “Operation Iraqi Freedom”. This has led to the development of unmanned drones used for reconnaissance, and now even specific tactical missions. Who knows what the future will bring?
Author’s Note: As many of you know, I served in the USAF for 20+ years and retired in 1987. I am proud to have played a role, however how small and insignificant, in the history of the USAF.

Chiropractic Founder’s Day

On this date in 1895, Daniel David Palmer gave the first chiropractic adjustment. Since then the debate as to the validity of the chiropractic profession has raged on. You need to bear in mind that in 1895 the practice of medicine was still in its infancy, and not too far removed from the days when blood-letting was performed in barber shops and was an accepted and commonly used form of treatment – and “snake oil salesmen” were rampant. Bactria was yet to be discovered, and antibiotics were not even imagined yet. With the rapid advances in medicine at the turn of the century came a propitiatory mindset among its practitioners. Any alternative form of treatment was looked upon with skepticism. Therefore, the medical and pharmaceutical industries regard the chiropractic profession as quackery, and chiropractors as little more than glorified massage therapists; without the “happy ending” — And, I don’t know of any health insurance companies that cover visits to the chiropractor.
With that said, some of my friends swear by their chiropractors and visit them regularly for periodic adjustments to their spine. With the rising costs of medical care, people are seeking other means of treatment. That is why there has been a rise in chiropractic, homeopathic, and other non-medical, non-invasive procedures. The upsurge in the popularity of acupuncture, massage, spiritual healing, nutrition, herbs, aromatherapy, music therapy, homeopathy, and naturopathy bear this out as well.
The healthcare debate will rage on for a long time, but isn’t it time to refocus the debate to a patient-centered approach rather than the provider-centered model used currently?

First Love Day

First Love Day celebrates that overwhelming sensation we feel when we first experience our very first love. First Love Day reminds us that, for better or worse, our first love shaped who we are today.
First Love Day was established to remind us of how important the very first person we ever fell in love with was to us, and likely how important they still are. Those memories no doubt shaped what we looked for in a future partner, whether because of the sadness and pain involved, or because of the moments of joy and exultation. This holiday is intended to be spent in contemplation about the first time we fell in love, whether it was a positive or negative experience.
To celebrate First Love Day, spend the day in quiet contemplation of your first love. If you are among the fortunate few who is still with their first love, spend the day with them and remember why you are still with them. If you’re still friends with your first love, get in touch with them today and reminisce about how important you were to each other. If not, reflect back on those days and remember the person you were then, and compare that to who you are today.

Hug a Greeting Card Writer Day

Hug a Greeting Card Writer Day celebrates those anonymous and often unappreciated people who write the greeting cards that we send at all life’s most basic, personal moments. Whether everyday occasions or seasonal, their words convey the sentiments that most people are unwilling or unable to express themselves to someone dear. Whether humorous, nauseatingly sappy, or religious, greeting cards serve to enable you to express your feelings toward someone dear to you.

National Cheeseburger Day

According to my source, there are many stories about the creation of the cheeseburger. A few are listed below:

  • The cheeseburger was invented by a chef named Lionel Sternberger in 1926  while working at his father’s Pasadena, California sandwich shop, The Rite Spot. During an experiment, he dropped a slice of American cheese on a sizzling hamburger.
  • The cheeseburger was created by O’Dell’s Restaurant in Los Angeles in 1928, which listed a cheeseburger, smothered with chili, for 25 cents.
  • Kaelin’s Restaurant in Louisville, Kentucky says it invented the cheeseburger in 1934.
  • In Denver, Colorado in 1935, a trademark for the name “cheeseburger” was awarded to Louis Ballast of the Humpty Dumpty Drive-In.
  • According to its archives, Gus Belt, founder of Steak n’ Shake, applied for a trademark on the word “cheeseburger” in the 1930’s.

I am skeptical of all these claims. Cheese has been around since the Middle Ages, and the hamburger has been around since the mid-19th Century. I find it difficult to believe that no one thought of combining the two before 1926. It simply defies logic.
Anyway, no matter when or by whom it was created, today cheeseburgers are a staple at backyard gatherings and on restaurant menus everywhere – from fast-food drive-ins to 5-star gourmet establishments.
You don’t need an advanced degree in the Culinary Arts to know how to celebrate National Cheeseburger Day. Enjoy a delicious cheeseburger today.

Rice Krispies Treats Day 

The origins of Rice Krispies Treats Day are unknown, but Rice Krispies Treats themselves were invented in 1939 by Melitta Jensen and Mildred Day at the Kellogg Company’s home economics department as a fundraiser for Camp Fire Girls.
Rice Krispies Cereal was created by Clayton Rindlisbacher for the Kellogg company in 1927, and the company began marketing it in 1928.
To celebrate Rice Krispies Treats Day, evoke some childhood memories and enjoy some Rice Krispies Treats today. Rice Krispies treats are easy and fun to make at home, especially with your children or grandchildren. If you don’t know how to make them, there are recipes are available all over the worldwide web. If you are not so inclined, Rice Krispies Treats are also available in most supermarkets as well, but they may contain some unwanted preservatives…and they definitely won’t contain the love and good times shared by making them at home with your family.

More Holidays

On This Date

  • In 1763 – It was reported, by the Boston Gazette, that the first piano had been built in the United States. The instrument was named the Spinet and was made by John Harris.
  • In 1789 – Alexander Hamilton negotiated and secured the first loan for the United States. The Temporary Loan of 1789 was repaid on June 8, 1790, at the sum of $191,608.81.
  • In 1793 – President George Washington laid the actual cornerstone of the U.S. Capitol in Washington DC.
  • In 1830 – The “Tom Thumb”, the first locomotive built in America, raced a horse on a nine-mile course. The horse won when the locomotive had some mechanical difficulties.
  • In 1850 – The Fugitive Slave Act was passed by Congress. The act allowed slave owners to claim slaves that had escaped into other states.
  • In 1851 – The first issue of “The New York Times” was published.
  • In 1872 – Oscar II became King of Norway and Sweden. He succeeded his brother Charles XV and IV.
  • In 1891 – Harriet Maxwell Converse became the first white woman to ever be named the chief of an Indian tribe. The tribe was the Six Nations Tribe at Towanda Reservation in New York.
  • In 1927 – Columbia Phonograph Broadcasting System made its debut with its network broadcast over 16 radio stations. The name was later changed to CBS.
  • In 1934 – The USSR joined the League of Nations. It was expelled just a few years later for its aggressive actions towards Finland.
  • In 1955 – The “Ed Sullivan Show” began on CBS-TV. The show had been known as “The Toast of the Town” since 1948.
  • In 1959 – The Vanguard 3 satellite was launched into Earth’s orbit. The geocentric satellite was launched into Earth’s orbit by a Vanguard rocket, built by Glenn L. Martin Company, which is now known as Lockheed-Martin.
  • In 1970 – Counter-culture legend and rock music icon, Jimi Hendrix, died.
  • In 1973 – West Germany adopted the Deutsche Mark. This action replaced the East German Mark and helped complete the economic reunification part of the union between East and West Germany.
  • In 1981 – A museum honoring former President Gerald R. Ford was dedicated in Grand Rapids, MI.
  • In 1984 – The 39th session of the U.N. General Assembly was opened with an appeal to the United States and the Soviet Union to resume arms negotiations.
  • In 1991 – President George H.W. Bush said that he would send warplanes to escort U.N. helicopters that were searching for hidden Iraqi weapons if it became necessary.
  • In 1994 – Haiti’s military leaders agreed to leave on October 15th. This action averted a United States-led invasion to force them out of power.
  • In 1997 – Ted Turner, the media magnate, announced that over the next ten years he would give $1 billion to the United Nations.
  • In 1998 – The FDA approved a once-a-day easier-to-swallow medication for AIDS patients.
  • In 1998 – The House Judiciary Committee voted to release the videotape of President Clinton’s grand jury testimony from August 17.
  • In 1998 – The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) was founded. Author Esther Dyson became the first chairperson of the now nonprofit organization, which was initially under the oversight of the U.S. Department of Commerce. In 2009, the Department of Commerce gave up its control over ICANN, which is responsible for maintaining the Domain Name System (DNS) on the Internet.

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.

September 17th – Constitution Day/Citizenship Day

September 17, 2017 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Good morning citizens and constitution lovers. Today is Sunday, September 17, 2017. Today’s reasons to celebrate are:

Constitution Day and Citizenship Day

The first holiday today is Constitution Day and Citizenship Day is an American federal observance that recognizes the adoption of the United States Constitution and those who have become United States citizens. It is observed on September 17, the day the Constitutional Convention signed the Constitution in 1787. Constitution Day and Citizenship Day started out as separate holidays, but Congress combined the two holidays in 2004.
The law establishing the present holiday was created in 2004 with the passage of an amendment sponsored by Senator Robert Byrd to the Omnibus spending bill of 2004. Before this law was enacted, the holiday was known as “Citizenship Day”. In addition to renaming the holiday “Constitution Day and Citizenship Day,” the act mandates that all publicly funded educational institutions provide educational programming on the history of the American Constitution on that day. This holiday is not observed by granting time off work for federal employees.
Here is a bit more information about Citizenship Day. On February 29, 1952, President Harry Truman signed a bill establishing Citizenship Day on September 17 of each year. The roots of this holiday go back to I Am an American Day, which was established in 1940 by Congress as the third Sunday in May. This day was moved and renamed to Citizenship Day to coincide with the signing of the Constitution on September 17, 1787.

Emmy Awards

Each year, the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences hosts an awards ceremony to recognize outstanding achievements in television programming. It is one of the biggest red carpet events of the awards season, and an average of 13 million Americans tune in each year to watch the show.
The inaugural Emmy Awards ceremony took place in 1949. The award given out at the ceremony is referred to as an “Emmy” – a feminized version of the word “immy”, which refers to a piece of equipment used in TV cameras until the 1960’s. The Emmy statuette is a winged woman holding an atom in her outstretched arms, which symbolizes the collaboration between art and science.
Author’s Note: I’m not one for Awards shows, so, for the umpteenth year in a row, I won’t be watching the Emmys.

National Women’s Friendship Day

National Women’s Friendship Day is celebrated annually on the third Sunday of September and was created by women for women. The Kappa Delta Sorority created this holiday in 1999.  Kappa Delta Sorority, founded in 1897 in Farmville, Virginia, has over 180,000 members. The aim of this holiday is to promote special friendship among women. There are many ways to celebrate this holiday ladies. Get together with as many women friends as you can. Invite them to meet you for brunch. For your out-of-town friends, send an e-mail or call them.

National Wife Appreciation Day

Another holiday today that celebrates women is National Wife Appreciation Day. Celebrated on the third Sunday of September, National Wife Appreciation Day is an annual holiday that reminds husbands and partners to show their significant other just how much she means to you. While we all may take each other for granted from time-to-time, it’s important to remind each other how much we value one another. Remind that special lady in your life how much you appreciate her. You don’t need to spend an arm-and-a-leg to remind her how much you care. Just a little token of your appreciation will do. Surprise her with dinner out, some chocolates, or some flowers.

National Apple Dumpling Day

Apple dumplings originated as a humble peasant dish in Europe and soon spread to the rest of the world. Over the centuries, they have become an internationally renown treat found in many a grandmothers’ cookbook worldwide.
Originally, apple dumplings were boiled or steamed, and the word dumpling itself comes from German dampf, meaning steam. Nowadays, however, apple dumplings are typically baked and stuffed with cored and peeled Granny Smith apples which are spiced and sweetened. The crucial spice is cinnamon, though nutmeg and lemon zest are popular as well.
To celebrate National Apple Dumpling Day, bake some apple dumplings today. Don’t forget the caramel sauce and vanilla ice cream.

National Monte Cristo Day

National Monte Cristo Day (sometimes also called Monte Cristo Sandwich Day) was submitted to the Registrar at National Day Calendar in June of 2015 by Bennigan’s Restaurants and proclaimed by the National Day Calendar registry to be observed annually on September 17.
A Monte Cristo sandwich is a fried ham and cheese sandwich. It is a variation of a French sandwich called a croque-monsieur. The Monte Cristo is also sometimes called French Sandwich, Toasted Ham Sandwich, and French Toasted Cheese Sandwich. The Monte Cristo sandwich is typically a savory sandwich rather than sweet.  It is usually dipped in egg batter and either pan-fried or deep-fried. Variations may include sliced turkey and different types of cheese. It can be served grilled or open-faced and heated under a grill or broiler.
To celebrate National Monte Cristo Day, go out for lunch and enjoy a Monte Cristo sandwich. You can also easily make one at home. It’s basically a cross between French Toast and a grilled ham and cheese sandwich.

More Holidays

On This Date

  • In 1778 – The United States signed its first treaty with a Native American tribe, the Delaware Nation.
  • In 1796 – President George Washington’s Farewell Address was read before the Congress.
  • In 1809 – The Treaty of Fredrikshamn was signed between Sweden and Russia. Also known as the Treaty of Hamina, it concluded the Finnish War and ceded Swedish territories, (which later formed Finland) to Russia.
  • In 1862 – The Battle of Antietam was fought near the Antietam Creek in Sharpsburg, Maryland. It was the bloodiest single day of the American Civil War. More than 23,000 men were killed, wounded, or missing. The Confederate advance was ended with heavy losses to both armies. The battle ended Confederate General Robert E. Lee incursion into the North. While there were no clear victors, many believed that the withdrawal of Confederate soldiers from the battlefield before the Union Army did meant that the Union had won the battle.
  • In 1872 – Phillip W. Pratt patented a version of a sprinkler system.
  • In 1894 – A day after Japan won the Battle of Pyongyang it defeated China in the Battle of the Yalu River. Also known as the Battle of the Yellow Sea, the conflict was fought between Japan and China during the First Sino-Japanese War.
  • In 1911 – The first transcontinental airplane flight started. It took C.P. Rogers 82 hours to fly from New York City to Pasadena, CA.
  • In 1930 – Construction of Boulder Dam, later renamed Hoover Dam, began in Black Canyon, near Las Vegas, NV.
  • In 1937 – At Mount Rushmore, Abraham Lincoln’s face was dedicated.
  • In 1939 – A man ran 10,000 meters in less than 30 minutes for the first time in recorded history. Finnish runner, Taisto Mäki, broke his previous record by running the distance in 29 minutes 52 seconds.
  • In 1947 – The first Secretary of Defense, James V. Forrestal, was sworn into office.
  • In 1953 – Ernie Banks became the first black baseball player to wear a Chicago Cubs uniform. He retired in 1971 known as ‘Mr. Cub’.
  • In 1953 – The Ochsner Foundation Hospital in New Orleans, LA, successfully separated Siamese twins. Carolyn Anne and Catherine Anne Mouton were connected at the waist when born.
  • In 1961 – The Minnesota Vikings debuted as a new National Football League (NFL) team.
  • In 1962 – United States space officials announced the selection of Neil A. Armstrong and eight others as new astronauts.
  • In 1963 – “The Fugitive” premiered on ABC-TV.
  • In 1972 – “M*A*S*H” premiered on CBS-TV.
  • In 1978 – The Camp David Accords were signed by Egyptian President Anwar El Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin. The accords were the precursor to the 1974 Egypt-Israel Peace Treaty
  • In 1983 – Vanessa Williams, as Miss New York, became the first black woman to be crowned Miss America.
  • In 1983 – Carl Yastrzemski (Boston Red Sox) broke Hank Aaron’s major league record for games played when he started his 3,299th game.
  • In 1984 – 9,706 immigrants became naturalized citizens when they were sworn in by Vice-President George Bush in Miami, FL. It was the largest group to become United States citizens.
  • In 1984 – Reggie Jackson hit his 500th career home run. It was exactly 17 years from the day he hit his first major league home run.
  • In 1992 – Lawrence Walsh called a halt to his probe of the Iran-Contra scandal. The investigation had lasted 5 1/2 years.
  • In 1995 – Hong Kong held its last legislative election before being taken over by China in 1997.

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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