Life Day 23939: Nuts To You

January 26, 2013 at 12:41 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Good morning my nutty friends. Today is Saturday, January 26th, 2013. There are two food-related “holidays” today, both involving nuts (although neither are really nuts; one is a one is actually a legume, the other is a seed). The first is National Peanut Brittle Day. Since I wrote about peanut butter, and gave you some pea-nutty facts a couple of days ago, I won’t dwell on this too long. All you really need to know about peanut brittle is that it is brittle, it contains peanuts,  and it is delicious. Treat yourself to some today.
The second is National Pistachio Day. Prior to 1979, there was no pistachio industry in the United States. Most of the pistachios in America came from Iran. With the overthrow of the Shaw, the taking of the hostages, and the resulting embargo on all things Iranian, farmers in the central valley of California saw the opportunity to plant the crop. The soil conditions and climate were similar. Since the U.S. farmers have more modern farming methods, the result is a better pistachio. Here are a few fun facts about pistachios.
Pistachios are not actually nuts, but seeds.
Pistachios are one of the lowest calorie, lowest fat nuts.
There are about 49 nuts per ounce.
Pistachios are an excellent source of vitamin B6, copper and manganese and a good source of protein, fiber, thiamine, and phosphorus.
Pistachios are one of the best sources of antioxidants among plant-based foods.
California is the second largest pistachio producer in the world, led only by Iran. In fact, 98% of the pistachios produced in America come from California.
Pistachios are one of only two nuts mentioned in the Bible (Genesis 43:11). The other is the almond.
Enjoy a few as a snack today. A handful is only about 100 calories, and they even come in a variety of flavors now.

There are also some “irregular” regular “holidays” today as well. The first is Lotus 1-2-3 Day. On this date in 1983, Lotus began to sell its best-selling, user-friendly spreadsheet for Microsoft OS. Although it wasn’t the first spreadsheet (Apple’s VisiCalc preceded it), it quickly became the most popular, because, well, it was easy as 1-2-3. What is a spreadsheet, you say? A spreadsheet gives businesses (and home users as well) the ability to run quick and easy “what if” calculations. “What if we lower the price of our widgets by $10.00 per unit?” or “What if the mortgage rate drops to 3% and we refinance?” It was a major breakthrough for personal computing. It was good for its time, but today the best selling spreadsheet is Microsoft “Excel”.
The second “holiday” today is National Seed Swap Day. Get your minds out of the gutter fellas, that’s not the type of “seed swap” to which this “holiday” refers. The last Saturday in January is National Seed Swap Day.  It’s an opportunity to meet up with other seed enthusiasts and exchange seeds from their gardens. Seed swap categories include natives, edibles, herbs, exotics, annuals, perennials and trees/shrubs. If there is such an event in your area, I urge you to attend. If you aren’t a gardener, maybe this will spark your interest and you can pick up some seeds for next years seed swap.
And, the last holiday is Spouses Day. Spouses Day is a time to enjoy and appreciate your better half. You can use this day as a prelude or warm up to Valentine’s Day, but its not as much of a gift giving event. Rather, use it as a time to show your spouse that you care and appreciate all of the things that he/she does for you and for the household. Over the long years of a relationship, its easy to take for granted the many things your spouse does. Take time today to notice and show appreciation for what they do.

On this date in 1784, in a letter to his daughter, Benjamin Franklin expressed unhappiness over the Eagle being selected as the symbol of America. He wanted the symbol to be the turkey. If he had got his way, what would we eat on Thanksgiving? A Bald Eagle?
Other significant historical events which occurred on this date are:
In 1500,Vicente Yáñez Pinzón discovered Brazil.
In 1788, the first European settlers in Australia, led by Captain Arthur Phillip, landed in what became known as Sydney. The group had first settled at Botany Bay eight days before. This day is celebrated as Australia Day.
In 1802, the U.S. Congress passed an act calling for a library to be established within the U.S. Capitol.
In 1837, Michigan became the 26th state to join the United States.
In 1861, Louisiana seceded from the Union.
In 1870, the state of Virginia rejoined the Union.
In 1875, George F. Green patented the electric dental drill for sawing, filing, dressing and polishing teeth.
In 1911, inventor Glenn H. Curtiss flew the first successful seaplane.
In 1934, the Apollo Theatre opened in New York City.
In 1959, “Alcoa Presents” debuted on ABC-TV. The show would later be renamed “One Step Beyond”.
Inn 1972, in Hermsdorf, Czechoslovakia, a JAT Yugoslav Airlines flight crashed after the detonation of a bomb in the forward cargo hold killing 27 people. The bomb was believed to have been placed on the plane by a Croatian extremist group. Vesna Vulovic, a stewardess, survived after falling 33,000 feet in the tail section. She broke both legs and became paralyzed from the waist down.
In 1996, First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton testified before a grand jury concerning the Whitewater probe.
And, in 1998, President Clinton denied having an affair with a former White House intern, saying “I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss Lewinsky.”

If you were born on this date, you share a birthday with the following illustrious individuals:
Douglas MacArthur, 1880.
William (actor) Hopper, 1915.
Paul Newman, 1925.
Joan (actress) Leslie, 1915.
Bob (baseball player/sportscaster/actor/comedian) Uecker, 1935.
Scott (actor) Glenn, 1942.
Jean (Blues singer) Knight, 1943.
Angela (political activist) Davis, 1944.
Gene (film critic) Siskel, 1946.
Eddie Van Halen, 1957.
Ellen (entertainer) DeGeneres, 1958.
And finally, Wayne (NHL) Gretzky, 1961.

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