Life Day 24261: Well, I’ll Be A Monkey’s Uncle

December 14, 2013 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Today is Saturday, December 14, 2013. Good morning simian supporters. The holidays today are:

Monkey Day:

Monkey Day is an unofficial holiday celebrated internationally on December 14. While the holiday is mainly about monkeys, it also celebrates all things simian; all non-human primates such as apes, tarsiers, and lemurs. It is the one day of the year when “monkeying around” is acceptable. While the spirit of this holiday encourages a little “monkey business”, it has a more serious undertone as well; that of raising awareness of the theory of evolution, medical research, and animal rights.

There are three distinct types of simian primates. Familiar species like baboons and macaques are classified as Old World Monkeys; capuchins and howler monkeys are New World Monkeys, and chimpanzees and gorillas are Apes. There are currently 264 known monkey species in the world.

Monkey Day holiday was started in 2000 when artist Casey Sorrow, then an art student at Michigan State University, jokingly scribbled Monkey Day on a friend’s calendar, and then first celebrated the holiday with other MSU art students. It gained notoriety when Sorrow and fellow MSU art student Eric Millikin began including Monkey Day in their artwork and Fetus-X comic strips, and began promoting it online along with other artists. Since then, Monkey Day has been celebrated internationally, across countries like the U.S., Canada, Germany, and the United Kingdom.

There are a number of ways to celebrate this holiday. You can visit the primate section of your local zoo; research “monkeys” online or at your local library; watch simian based movies such as “King Kong” or “Planet of the Apes”; eat a lot of bananas; or enjoy some “Chunky Monkey” ice cream; or any combination of these. Your imagination is the only limiting factor.

Day Of The Horse:

In other animal-related news, Day Of The Horse was recognized by congress in 2004 (Senate Res. 452; sponsored by Senators Michael De Wine – Ohio and Ben “Night Horse” Campbell – Colorado; and co-sponsored by Senators Orin Hatch – Utah, Mary Landrieu – Louisiana, and Jack Kingston – Georgia). It is always celebrated on the second Saturday in December. The purpose of this holiday is to raise awareness to the plight of the few remaining wild horses and the slaughter of horses for commercial purposes.

Day Of The Horse encourages the people of the United States to be mindful of the contribution of horses to the economy, history and character of the United States, and recognizes the horse as a living link to our history, and as a vital part of the collective experience of the United States.

International Shareware Day:

International Shareware Day is a day to take time to reward the efforts of thousands of computer programmers who trust that if we try their programs and like them, we will pay for them. Unfortunately, very few payments are received, thus stifling the programmers efforts. This observance is meant to prompt each of us to inventory our PCs and Macs, see if we are using any shareware and then take the time in the holiday spirit to write payment checks to the authors. Hopefully this will keep the shareware coming.

National Bouillabaisse Day:

Bouillabaisse is a fish stew that originated in Marseilles, France around 600 B.C. At that time, Marseilles was a Greek colony so the stew was originally called “kakavia.” Bouillabaisse also appears in Roman mythology as a soup that Venus feeds to Vulcan. Today, bouillabaisse is an extremely popular dish in the Mediterranean region.

Marseilles fishermen typically make the dish when they return to port. Rather than using the more expensive fish that they catch, they use common fish like rockfish and shellfish. Different herbs and spices such as garlic, orange peel, basil, saffron, and bay leaf are added to the soup for flavor. Vegetables like tomatoes, onions, celery, and potatoes were added to the recipe during the 17th century.

By now, you should know of my aversion to seafood. Putting it in a soup does not change that. I will not be celebrating this holiday.

On this date in:

1798 – David Wilkinson of Rhode Island patented the nut and bolt machine.

1799 – The first president of the United States, George Washington, died at the age 67.

1819 – Alabama joined the Union as the 22nd state.

1900 – Professor Max Planck of Berlin University revealed his revolutionary Quantum Theory.

1903 – Orville Wright made the first attempt at powered flight. The engine stalled during take-off and the plane was damaged in the attempt. Three days later, after repairs were made, the modern aviation age was born when the plane stayed aloft for 12 seconds and flew 102 feet.

1911 – Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen became the first man to reach the South Pole. He reached the destination 35 days ahead of Captain Robert F. Scott.

1918 – For the first time in Britain women (over 30) voted in a General Election.

1939 – The Soviet Union was dropped from the League of Nations.

1945 – Josef Kramer, known as “the beast of Belsen,” and 10 others were executed in Hamelin for the crimes they committed at the Belsen and Auschwitz Nazi concentration camps.

1946 – The U.N. General Assembly voted to establish the United Nation’s headquarters in New York City.

1959 – Archbishop Makarios was elected Cyprus’ first president.

1962 – The U.S. space probe Mariner II approached Venus. It transmitted information about the planet’s atmosphere and surface temperature.

1981 – Israel annexed the Golan Heights, seized from Syria in war in 1967.

1983 – The U.S. battleship New Jersey fired on Syrian positions in Lebanon for the first time after American F-14 reconnaissance flights were fired on.

1984 – Howard Cosell retired from the NFL’s Monday Night Football.

1985 – Wilma Mankiller became the first woman to lead a major American Indian tribe as she formally took office as principal chief of the Cherokee Nation of OKlahoma.

1986 – The experimental aircraft Voyager, piloted by Dick Rutan and Jeana Yeager, took off from California on the first non-stop, non-refueled flight around the world. The trip took nine days to complete.

1987 – Chrysler pled no contest to federal charges of selling several thousand vehicles as new when Chrysler employees had driven the vehicles with the odometer disconnected.

1988 – The first transatlantic underwater fiber-optic cable went into service.

1993 – A judge in Colorado struck down the state’s voter-approved Amendment Two prohibiting gay rights laws, calling it unconstitutional.

1993 – The United Mine Workers approved a five-year contract that ended a strike that had reached seven states and involved some of the nation’s biggest coal operators.

1995 – The presidents of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Croatia signed the Dayton Accords to end fighting in Bosnia.

1995 – AIDS patient Jeff Getty received the first-ever bone-marrow transplant from a baboon.

1997 – Iran’s newest president, Mohammad Khatami, called for a dialogue with the people of the United States. The preceding Iranian leaders had reviled the U.S. as “The Great Satan.”

1997 – Cuban President Fidel Castro declared Christmas 1997 an official holiday to ensure the success of Pope John Paul II’s upcoming visit to Cuba.

1998 – Hundreds of Palestinian leaders renounced a call for the destruction of Israel.

1999 – Charles M. Schulz announced he was retiring the “Peanuts” comic strip. The last original “Peanuts” comic strip was published on February 13, 2000.

2000 – It was announced that American businessman Edmond Pope would be released from a Russian prison for humanitarian reasons. Pope had been sentenced to 20 years in prison after his conviction on espionage charges.

2001 – European Union leaders agreed to dispatch 3,000-4,000 troops to join an international peacekeeping force in Afghanistan.

2001 – The first commercial export, since 1963, of U.S. food to Cuba began. The 24,000 metric tons for corn were being sent to replenish what was lost when Hurricane Michelle struck on November 4.

Noteworthy Birthdays:

Nostradamus 1503 – Apothecary, reputed ‘seer’.

Tycho Brahe 1546 – Astronomer.

Roger Fry 1866 – Artist, art critic.

Jammy Doolittle 1896 – Renowned aviator.

Margaret Chase Smith 1897 – Politician, former Senator.

Morey Amsterdam 1908 – Comedian, actor.

Spike Jones 1911 – Bandleader.

Dan Dailey 1913 – Actor.

Shirley Jackson 1919 -Author.

Don Hewitt 1922 TV news producer.

Abbe Lane 1932 – Singer, actress.

Charlie Rich 1932 – Country singer.

Lee Remick 1935 – Actress.

Hal Williams 1938 – Actor.

Jane Birkin 1946 – Actress.

Patty Duke 1946 – Actress.

Jackie McCauley 1946 – Musician.  (Them)

Joyce Vincent-Wilson 1946 – Singer. (Tony Orlando, Dawn)

Dee Wallace-Stone 1948 – Actress.

Bill Buckner 1949 – Baseball first baseman.

Cliff Williams 1949 – Musician. (AC/DC)

Tamara Daanz 1952  – Singer.

Cynthia Gibb 1963 – Actress.

Bridget Hall 1977 – Model.

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