Life Day 25045: This Is A Lame Day

February 6, 2016 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Good morning quack pots. Today is February 6th. The first “holiday” today is Lame Duck Day. I don’t think that this day refers to a Mallard or Merganser with an injury. Rather, Lame Duck Day commemorates the ratification of the 20th Amendment (which addressed presidential succession) on this date in 1933. It is also about giving support and recognition to people in general who are on their way out – last term’s political leaders, people who’ve been promoted or are moving away, and anybody who’s ineffective in their current position because their time is up. A “lame duck” by human, definition is a person who is in a position of some kind, and will soon be phased out for some reason.
If you are a duck and have an injury…seek medical attention immediately. If you are a human who thinks that you’re a duck…seek psychiatric help immediately.

The next “holiday” today is Take Your Child to the Library Day. Nadine Lipman, a children’s librarian in Waterford, Connecticut, came up with the idea of  Take Your Child to the Library Day and selected the first Saturday in February as the annual day of celebration. The idea gained popularity immediately, and librarians started planning special events, programs, and displays.  February 6, 2016, will be the 5th annual Take Your Child to the Library Day. Although Nadine picked the first Saturday in February as her preferred day of observance, many libraries will celebrate this holiday at varying dates in February, and sometimes, due to adverse weather condition, will stretch it into early March. Check with your local library to find out when, or if, they will be celebrating this holiday. Personally, I don’t think you should need a special day to take your child to the library. You should be taking them on a regular basis anyway. It’s a great way to bond with your child in a quiet relaxed atmosphere.

The third “holiday” today is National Chopsticks Day. Chopsticks were developed about 5,000 years ago in China. The pieces of food were small enough that they negated the need for knives at the dinner table, and chopsticks became staple utensils. Chinese chopsticks called kuai-zi, are usually 9 to 10 inches long and rectangular with a blunt end. By 500 AD, chopstick use had spread from China to present-day Vietnam, Korea, and Japan. In Japan, chopsticks were originally considered precious and were used exclusively for religious ceremonies. The earliest chopsticks used for eating looked like tweezers; they were made from one piece of bamboo bent into a tight “U” shape. By the 10th Century, chopsticks were being produced in two separate pieces. Japanese chopsticks differed in design from Chinese chopsticks in that they were rounded and came to a point; they were also shorter (7 inches long for females and 8 inches long for males). The Japanese usually made their chopsticks out of wood. The Japanese were also the first to create disposable wooden chopsticks (called waribashi), which appeared in 1878.
Personally, I could never master the art of using chopsticks. Instead, I use them to drum on objects on the table until my food arrives…then ask for a fork. Do you know how to use those infernal things?

Here are five fun chopsticks facts:

  1. In Chinese the word for chopsticks,  筷子, means quick little bamboo fellow.
  2. The English word “chopstick” was apparently derived from the Chinese Pidgin English words “chop chop”, which means fast.
  3. In Japanese, chopsticks are called Hashi.
  4. Chopsticks are traditionally held in the right hand, even by left-handed people. Although chopsticks may now be deployed by either hand, left-handed chopstick use is considered improper. This practice prevents a left-handed chopstick user from accidentally elbowing a right-handed user seated nearby.
  5. It is a huge breach of chopstick etiquette to impale a piece of food with chopsticks.

Author’s Note: I had trouble deciding exactly how to classify this holiday. It doesn’t pertain to any food or beverage, yet it is a utensil used to eat food. In the end, I decided to classify it as a regular “holiday” because it is more about the history of chopsticks rather than the food you eat with them.

The “holidays” listed below deserve acknowledgment, but I am not going to expound upon them individually. As usual, I am providing a link to each one should any of them pique your interest.

You scream, I  scream, we all scream for…frozen yogurt? Have you heard the latest “scoop”? The food-related “holiday” today is National Frozen Yogurt Day. Originally, the health-conscious trend of the 1970s spurred the creation of this frozen treat. However, it didn’t gain widespread popularity until the 1980s, when recipes improved to the frozen yogurt we know and love. Frozen yogurt, or “FroYo” as it has become known, is eaten almost as much as ice cream and is served in just as many flavors and styles. It’s generally healthier than ice-cream, and often just as good – sometimes even better. Frozen yogurt is a great source of calcium and potassium, but remember to still enjoy in moderation. A healthier alternative to ice cream, frozen yogurt is also slightly more tart.  Eat it plain, or add toppings such as fresh fruit, fruit sauce, nuts, coconut, and top it off with a dollop of whipped cream. While the origins of Frozen Yogurt Day are unknown, this holiday is celebrated smack dab in the middle of winter. Similar to ice cream but lower in fat, FroYo is a delish frozen dessert perfect for any time of the year.

On this date in 1971 – NASA Astronaut Alan B. Shepard used a six-iron that he had brought inside his spacecraft and swung at three golf balls on the surface of the moon. (He overshot the hole by 387 yards).

Other significant events that occurred on this date are:

  • In 1778 – The United States gained official recognition from France as the two nations signed the Treaty of Amity and Commerce and the Treaty of Alliance in Paris.
  • In 1788 – Massachusetts became the sixth state to ratify the U.S. Constitution.
  • In 1815 – The state of New Jersey issued the first American railroad charter to John Stevens.
  • In 1899 – The U.S. Senate ratified a peace treaty between the U.S. and Spain.
  • In 1900 – The Holland Senate ratified the 1899 peace conference decree that created in international arbitration court at The Hague.
  • In 1911 – The first old-age home for pioneers opened in Prescott, AZ.
  • In 1926 -= The National Football League adopted a rule that made players ineligible for competition until their college class graduated.
  • In 1932 – Dog sled racing happened for the first time in Olympic competition.
  • In 1937 – K. Elizabeth Ohi became the first Japanese woman lawyer when she received her degree from John Marshall Law School in Chicago, IL.
  • In 1952 – Britain’s King George VI died. His daughter, Elizabeth II, succeeded him.
  • In 1956 – St. Patrick Center opened in Kankakee, IL. It was the first circular school building in the United States.
  • In 1959 – The U.S., for the first time, successfully test-fired a Titan intercontinental ballistic missile from Cape Canaveral.
  • In 1972 – Over 500,000 pieces of irate mail arrived at the mail room of CBS-TV, when word leaked out that an edited-for-TV version of the X-rated movie, “The Demand,” would be shown.
  • In 1987 – President Ronald Reagan became the oldest U.S. President in history when he celebrated his 76th birthday.
  • In 1998 – Washington National Airport was renamed for U.S. President Ronald Reagan with the signing of a bill by U.S. President Clinton.
  • In 1999 – Excerpts from former White House intern Monica Lewinsky’s videotaped testimony were shown at President Clinton’s impeachment trial.
  • In 2000 – Then First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton formally declared that she was a candidate for a U.S. Senate seat from the state of New York. (She had that goofy New York Yankees baseball cap to prove her residency).
  • And, in 2002 – A federal judge ordered John Walker Lindh to be held without bail pending trial. Lindh was known as the “American Taliban.”

If you were born on this date, you share a birthday with the following noteworthy individuals:

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