Life Day 25021: Happy Skeptics Day

January 13, 2016 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Good morning “doubting Thomases”. Today is January 13th. I am a bit skeptical, but according to my sources, today’s first “holiday” is International Skeptics Day. I don’t care whether you believe it or not, but, by definition, a skeptic is a person who questions or doubts facts and theories. A skeptic does not accept the “given”. International Skeptics Day is of dubious origin. It is unknown who created this holiday, or why, or even when it is to be celebrated. I found 3 different dates on which to celebrate this holiday: January 13th, October 13th, and the first Friday the 13th of the year…but you can’t believe everything you read.
Due to the current political climate, I tend to be skeptical of  just about everything these days. Since when did the “truth” become dependent upon to which political party or organization you belong? The only thing that I know to be absolutely true is that as soon as a politician begins to speak, he is basically engaging is a sex act, because someone, somewhere, somehow is about to get “screwed”.

The second “holiday” today is National Rubber Ducky Day. In 1970, Jim Henson performed the song “Rubber Duckie” as Ernie on Sesame Street, and the rubber duck bath toy has been an iconic American symbol ever since. Rubber ducks have been around since the rise of the rubber industry in the late 1800s, but no one knows their exact origin, just as no one knows the reason this holiday is celebrated on this date…the episode of Sesame Street on which this song was featured didn’t air until early February of 1970.
Did you know that in January of 1992, a shipment of 29,000 rubber duckies fell off a cargo ship in the Pacific Ocean? By 2007, the “Friendly Floatees” had traveled 17,000 miles around the world on the ocean currents. Some are still afloat today. Over the years, people have reported sightings in Indonesia, Australia, South America, the Bering Straight, the Arctic, and (eventually) the Atlantic Ocean.

The third “holiday” is Public Radio Broadcasting Day. No, this “holiday” does not pertain to PBS. On this date in 1910, the first public radio broadcast was an experimental broadcast by Dr. Lee De Forest and the Lee De Forest Company. The microphones were set up at the Metropolitan Opera House where Enrico Caruso and a few other opera stars of the day performed selected arias from Pagliacci. The few radio receivers were those at the De Forest Laboratory, on board ships in New York Harbor,  and at a few New York City locations where reporters were stationed at receiving sets.

The last “holiday” today is Make Your Dream Come True Day. Make Your Dream Come True Day gives you the opportunity to do something to realize your goals and dreams. Whatever your dreams are, they usually don’t come true without some effort on your part. On this day do something, anything, to move in the direction of achieving your dreams. Even if your ‘dream’ requires multiple steps to be achieved, you can still get started on the steps to fulfill your dream.

The food-related “holiday” today is National Peach Melba Day. Peach Melba is a dessert which combines two popular summer fruits:  peaches and a raspberry sauce accompanying vanilla ice cream. It was created in 1892 by French chef  Auguste Escoffier at the Savoy Hotel in London to honor Australian soprano, Nellie Melba. Why it is celebrated in the middle of January is a mystery. Peaches and raspberries aren’t even in season…and ice cream in January?

On this date in 1794, President George Washington approved a measure adding two stars to the American flag, following the admission of Vermont and Kentucky to the union.
In 1854, Anthony Faas of Philadelphia, PA, patented the accordion. He made improvements to the keyboard and enhanced the sound. It can’t be proven, but it is rumored that the first song he played on his new creation was a Polka. (For my  humor-impaired readers, the previous sentence was a joke).
In 1906 – The Electro Importing Company, placed an ad in “Scientific American” magazine for radio receivers. It was the first advertisement marketing radios to the general public. The introductory cost was $7.50, which equates to about $197.00 in today’s dollars.
In 1928,  Ernst F. W. Alexanderson gave the first public demonstration of television.
In 1942 – Henry Ford patented the plastic automobile referred to as the “Soybean Car.” The car was 30% lighter than the average car.
In 1957,  Wham-O began producing “Pluto Platters.” This marked the true beginning of production of the flying disc. And the ‘Frisbee” was born.
In 1962, Ernie Kovacs died in a car crash in west Los Angeles, CA.
In 1966, Elizabeth Montgomery’s character, Samantha, on “Bewitched,” had a baby. The baby’s name was Tabitha.
Also in 1966, Robert C. Weaver became the first black Cabinet member when he was appointed Secretary of Housing and Urban Development by President Lyndon B. Johnson.
In 1984 – Wayne Gretzky extended his NHL consecutive scoring streak to 45 games.
In 1990, L. Douglas Wilder of Virginia, the nation’s first elected black governor, took the oath of office in Richmond.
1992 – Japan apologized for forcing tens of thousands of Korean women to serve as sex slaves for Japanese soldiers during World War II
In 1997,  Debbie Reynolds received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
In 1999 – Michael Jordan (Chicago Bulls) announced his retirement from the NBA.
And last, but not least, in 2002 – President George W. Bush fainted after choking on a pretzel.

If you were born on this date, you share a birthday with the following distinguished people:
Horatio Alger – 1834. (Author)
Sophie Tucker – 1884. (Singer, actress)
Alfred Fuller – 1885.  (Founder of Fuller Brush Company)
Earle Wheeler – 1908.  (General, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff – 1964-1970)
Jeff Morrow – 1913.  (Actor)
Robert Stack – 1918. – ( (Actor – The Untouchables)
Gwen Verdon – 1926. – (singer, dancer, actress)
Charles Nelson Reilly – 1931. (Actor, director, game show panelist)
Billy Gray – 1938.  (Actor – son “Bud” on “Father Knows Best”)
Richard Moll – 1943.   (Actor, comedian – “Night Court”)
Julia Louis-Dreyfus – 1961. (Actress, comedienne)
Trace Adkins – 1962.  (Singer/songwriter, musician)
Patrick Dempsey – 1966.  (Actor)
Nicole Eggert – 1972.  (Actress)
And finally,  Orlando Bloom – 1977  (Actor)

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