Ballpoint Pen Day

June 10, 2016 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Good morning writing implement aficionados. Today is Friday, June 10th.

Ballpoint Pen Day 

Ballpoint Pen Day celebrates the fact that on this date in 1943, a journalist, Laszlo Biro and his brother, a chemist, developed the ballpoint pen. They took out a patent with the European Patent Office and made the first commercial models of Biro pens. The British government bought the rights to the patented pen so the Royal Air Force could use them. The pens wrote without a problem at high altitudes with reduced pressure, while fountain pens flooded. The ball served two functions: it acted as a cap to keep the ink from drying and it let the ink flow out of the pen at a controlled rate. To celebrate this holiday, give your keyboard a break and write notes to all of your friends and family with a ballpoint pen. You do still have one, don’t you?

Alcoholics Anonymous Founders’ Day 

Alcoholics Anonymous Founders’ Day celebrates the founding of Alcoholics Anonymous on this date in 1935. Bill Wilson, a stockbroker from New York, and his friend Dr. Robert Smith were looking to find the best way to reform alcoholics. Both had problems controlling their drinking. Wilson had some success with the Oxford Group, (a national organization founded by Lutheran minister Dr. Frank Buchman that promoted waiting for divine guidance in every aspect of life), while residing in New York. While on a trip to Akron, OH in 1935, he met Dr. Robert Smith. Dr. Smith posited that alcoholism was not a defect in character or morality, but rather a disease. It was from these humble beginnings that Alcoholics Anonymous blossomed. They developed the now famous 12-step program to sobriety, and the organization grew into the nationwide organization that it is today.

National Marriage Day

The second Friday of June each year is set aside to honor the institution of marriage. Marriage in one form or another has existed since the creation/evolution of mankind, and it has never had just one meaning. Throughout history, what is termed “marriage” has differed from society to society. And this diversity has been in evidence, if not since the beginning of time, at least since the beginning of marriage itself, roughly some 4000 years ago. The fact that there are so many adjectives commonly used in conjunction with the word “marriage” lend gravitas to this fact — Traditional, religious, civil, arranged, gay, plural, group, open, heterosexual, common-law, interracial, same-sex, polygamous, and monogamous are all used to describe marriage today. As societies evolve, so do the parameters that define marriage.
Marriage can be sanctioned legally or religiously, and typically confers upon married people a special legal status with particular rights, benefits, and obligations. Access to this special status has changed over time. For example, it took until 1967 for the Supreme Court to legalize interracial marriage; while same-sex marriage, which for some time had been banned in many states or ignored in others, wasn’t ruled a constitutional right for all Americans until last year (2015)…and that is still creating controversy.
In today’s ever-changing society, marriage means different things to different people, so you should celebrate National Marriage Day in any way that you deem appropriate…no matter what type of relationship you are in. It is not my place here to judge people for whatever they believe marriage to be, or express my personal opinion. Your opinions on marriage and how you choose to celebrate, or not celebrate, this holiday should be between you and your Deity, your government, your partner, or if you prefer, your gerbil.

National Herb and Spice Day 

We often hear the term “herbs and spices”, and know that they are vital ingredients in many dishes. They add flavor, aroma, color, texture and even nutrients. Both spices and herbs are part of plants (fresh or dried). Both also been used to preserve foods, cure illness and enhance cosmetics. But have you ever stopped for a moment to think what the difference is between the two?  Well, the difference lies in where they are obtained from a plant.

Herbs come from the leafy and green part of the plant.
Examples of herbs include basil, oregano, thyme, rosemary, parsley and mint. They are usually grown in more temperate areas than spices and have great medicinal value and are also used in the preparation of cosmetic products. Herbs can be used either fresh or dried.
[Fresh herbs are now in season, and they are available in abundance at your local supermarket, farmers market, or possibly even your own garden. But what do you do with all those fresh herbs that you buy, but can’t use immediately? If you try to keep them in your refrigerator, they will soon become an unidentifiable mass of shriveled, malodorous goo. The answer is dry them. The easiest method for preserving your herbs so they will cook up a tasty dish next time you need them is to tie the leftover sprigs with kitchen string and dry them by hanging them upside down from a rack or open shelf in the kitchen. As a bonus, while they’re suspended, your kitchen takes on the aroma of an exotic marketplace].

Spices are derived from any parts of the plant other than the leafy part; such as the root, stem, bulb, bark or seeds.
Spices are usually dried before being used to season foods. Some examples are cinnamon, cloves, ginger, and pepper. Unlike herbs, they are grown in more tropical countries. They’ve also been known to preserve foods and some have medicinal value, such as turmeric with its anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal properties.

National Black Cow Day 

Although cows are a major source of food, Black Cow Day does not celebrate bovines with ebony pigmentation. Black Cow Day celebrates the refreshing summertime treat the Black Cow — For the unenlightened, a Black Cow is another way to say “root beer float”. But that can vary depending on where you’re from. Some regions of the country make a distinction between a root beer float and a Black Cow by making a Black Cow with chocolate ice cream rather than vanilla. In other regions of the country, a Black Cow is a traditional  root beer float, but with chocolate syrup added. Still other regions use the term Brown Cow instead. How many of you even know that a beverage like the Black Cow even existed? No matter what you call it, or whether you use chocolate ice cream or chocolate syrup…or not, enjoy a Black Cow today.
Author’s Note: For my readers in the Bakersfield, California environs, this holiday gives you a valid excuse to visit Dewar’s (as if you need an excuse). I don’t know it they have Black Cows on the menu, but if they don’t, they will probably make one for you anyway.

National Iced Tea Day 

With the official start of summer less than a fortnight away, chances are it is already hot where you live. What better time to celebrate National Iced Tea Day? Iced tea is a refreshing beverage enjoyed by millions of people worldwide.
It is generally accepted in America that Iced Tea was created by plantation owner Richard Blechynden at the 1904 World’s Fair in St. Louis, MO. While he is largely responsible for popularizing the drink because of a large number of people attending the Fair and spreading the word about it, iced tea had been around at least for a few decades prior to that in the south.
Since ancient times, people have believed that tea has a wide range of medicinal uses. Modern research has given credibility to many of these beliefs and identified more. In some cases, research is not conclusive. Regardless of the final determination as to its value over time, drink and enjoy some Iced Tea today because there is no research to suggest that it can hurt you either…and it tastes good.
Here are some of the known or suspected medicinal benefits: Avoidance of heart disease, cancer, tumors, stomach ailments, sore throats, colds (often flavored with honey), and it is refreshing and relaxing.
No matter who, where, when, why, or how it was created, it is delicious, refreshing, and healthy (if you don’t use too much sugar). I love iced tea and live on it during the hot months of summer. I especially like “sun tea”, which uses solar energy to brew the tea. You know me,  the consummate environmentalist. Enjoy a cool, refreshing glass this afternoon.

On this date:

  • In 1776 – The Continental Congress appointed a committee to write a Declaration of Independence.
  • In 1793 – The Jardin des Plantes zoo opened in Paris. It was the first public zoo.
  • In 1854 – The U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD, held its first graduation.
  • In 1902 – The “outlook” or “see-through” envelope was patented by Americus F. Callahan.
  • In 1909 – The SOS distress signal was used for the first time. The Cunard liner SS Slavonia used the signal when it wrecked off the Azores.
  • In 1920 – The Republican convention in Chicago endorsed woman suffrage.
  • In 1925 – The state of Tennessee adopted a new biology textbook that denied the theory of evolution.
  • In 1944 – The youngest pitcher in major league baseball pitched his first game. Joe Nuxhall was 15 years old (and 10 months and 11 days).
  • In 1948 – Chuck Yeager exceeded the speed of sound in the Bell XS-1.
  • In 1967 – Israel and Syria agreed to a cease-fire that ended the Six-Day War.
  • In 1970 – A fifteen-man group of special forces troops began training for Operation Kingpin. The operation was a POW rescue mission in North Vietnam.
  • In 1971 – The U.S. ended a 21-year trade embargo of China.
  • In 1984 – The U.S. Army successfully tested an anti-ballistic missile.
  • In 1984 – The United States and the Vatican established full diplomatic relations for the first time in 117 years.
  • In 1993 – It was announced by scientists that genetic material was extracted from an insect that lived when dinosaurs roamed the Earth.
  • In  1994 – President Clinton intensified sanctions against Haiti’s military leaders. Commercial air travel was suspended, along with most financial transactions between Haiti and the United States.
  • In 1996 – Britain and Ireland opened Northern Ireland peace talks. The IRA’s political arm Sinn Fein was excluded.
  • In 1998 – The Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled that poor children in Milwaukee could attend religious schools at taxpayer expense.

Celebrity Birthdays:


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