Elephant Appreciation Day

September 22, 2016 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Good morning pachyderm partisans. Today is Thursday, September 22nd. Today’s holidays are:

Elephant Appreciation Day

Elephant Appreciation Day is an obscure holiday created in 1996 by a Sarasota, FL businessman who liked elephants, and it has no official organizers or promoters. According to his website, this holiday is meant “to be observed and enjoyed by anyone anywhere on a local level.”
With that said, I think we need to discuss “the elephant in the room.” In keeping with the ‘appreciation’ part of this holiday, here are a few facts about elephants that you should ponder.

1)  Along with humans, apes and dolphins, elephants are the only animals that are self-aware and can recognize themselves in a mirror.
2)  They are the largest, most interesting, and most noble endangered land animal on Earth.
3)  Although trading in ivory has been banned in most countries since 1989, rising demand by China has boosted the price of ivory from $345 per pound in 2008 to well over $5,000 per pound in some places today. Because of this drastic increase in the value of ivory, criminal gangs of poachers are using such sophisticated hunting techniques as helicopters to hunt elephants. They kill the elephants and take only the tusks; leaving the rest to rot. Some of these gangs have even poisoned watering holes essential for other species to survive just to get the elephant tusks. Local governments are ill-equipped to deal with these heavily armed gangs.
4)  Elephant populations in Africa have fallen by 85% since the turn of the 20th century and those in Asia have fallen by 65%.  In addition to the big-money poaching trend, elephants on both continents are perhaps even more threatened by habitat loss; whether it’s from logging, land development or climate change.

So, as you celebrate this frivolous holiday you might want to keep the above facts in mind, but also don’t forget to celebrate this holiday in the context of its original intent: To celebrate these noble, majestic, intelligent, amusing, and friendly creatures. This video of an elephant painting a portrait of itself will help toward that end. And perhaps most of all, we should take a lesson from our pachyderm pals and “never forget”.

National Centenarian’s Day

National Centenarian’s Day is exactly what you think it is — A day to celebrate those few people who have been alive for a century or more.
A centenarian today has seen first hand the development of technology from the earliest phonographs, radio, and television, to today’s most advanced computer and home entertainment systems. They saw the telephone go from a device available only to a few elite households to something that is seemingly permanently attached to the hands of everyone over the age of 12 today. They saw the progression of the automobile from a passing fad available only to the most wealthy to the sleek, modern, technologically advanced machines in every driveway these days. They watched the aviation industry develop from its infancy to landing a man on the moon. They lived through WWI, WWII (“the war to end all wars”), and all the wars since. They lived through the stock market crash of 1929, and a few more since then. They learned frugality and self-reliance by surviving the great depression of the 1930’s. They have seen this nation torn apart by civil unrest on more than one occasion. And, they have seen politicians go from the corrupt, self-indulgent buffoons of yesteryear, to the corrupt, self-indulgent buffoons of today. (I guess some things never change).
If you are fortunate enough to have a centenarian in your life, treasure every moment with them. Listen to their stories and learn from their experiences. Not only can they offer insight into your family history, they can give you a wealth of information about modern history because they lived through it. Chances are, they’ve “been there; done that” – although they probably didn’t buy the shirt to prove it. Don’t discount them, they have a lot to offer.

Car Free Day

Car Free Day is another self-explanatory holiday. It simply urges everyone to not drive their cars today. Walk, ride your bicycle or take public transportation if you have to go anywhere today. If you have to work, and your job allows you the luxury, work from home today. If not, take public transportation or carpool. C’mon people it’s just for one day, you can go back to your air-polluting, ozone layer destroying, self-indulgent lifestyle tomorrow.

Dear Diary Day

Dear Diary Day hearkens back to the day not long ago when people actually set their innermost, private thoughts to pen and paper and recorded them every day in a locked diary or journal. These days, in the age of “social media”, we are bombarded by these same types of thoughts from virtual strangers; except now, they are usually recorded in 140 characters or less and put on the world-wide web for anyone to read. Whatever happened to the days when people valued their privacy and had a sense of dignity?

Business Women’s Day

The roots of Business Women’s Day go back to the late 1940’s. While men were off fighting World War II, women filled the void in the workforce. The returning soldiers found the women eager to have their men return. But, many women were not anxious to return to traditional roles in the home. Since this time, women’s role and contributions in the workforce have grown and evolved. This holiday commemorates the important legacy and contributions of the more than 68 million American working women and 7.7 million women business owners in America today.
Hilary A. Bufton Jr. and three Kansas City businesswomen founded the American Business Women’s Association on September 22, 1949.  The first Business Women’s Day was celebrated in 1982. In 1983, a joint Congressional resolution was passed and signed by President Ronald Reagan proclaiming September 22 as Business Women’s Day.

Autumnal Equinox

The Autumnal Equinox is not really a holiday at all, but just a reminder that the seasons are changing once again. Seems like this happens four times a year whether we like it or not. The specific time for the equinox this year is 7:21 AM (Pacific Daylight Time) today. If you don’t live in the Pacific Time Zone, make the adjustments yourself. If you read this before that time, make it a point to go outside and see if you actually notice a change in the climate as we transition from summer to fall.

National Ice Cream Cone Day

There is some debate about who actually “invented” the ice cream cone. Legend has it that ice cream vendor Italo Marchiony created an edible cup for his homemade ice cream to cut costs. He filed a United States Patent for his invention on September 22, 1903. But an ice cream merchant from England, Antonio Valvona, received a Patent for his edible biscuit cups machine in 1902. Both men created edible ice cream cups with flat bottoms and tapered sides. During the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair, Ernest Hamwi claimed to make the first edible waffle cone.
Today’s cones are available in a variety of sizes, shapes, and flavors. Regardless who invented them, ice cream cones are delicious treats. Do you lick them or bite them?

National White Chocolate Day
Chocolate has been around for nearly 2 millennia and was first consumed as a beverage by the Aztecs around 1900 BC. Chocolate was so important to the Aztec empire that it was used as a form of currency, and was, in fact, the expected form of payment for the taxes levied on the people they ruled. It wasn’t until Christopher Columbus visited the New World for the 4th time in 1502 that chocolate was brought back to the UK, and the rest is history…until 1930.
In 1930, white chocolate was invented by the Nestlé company in Switzerland and they debuted the first white chocolate candy bar (called the Milkybar) at the same time. White Chocolate is a naturally occurring part of the chocolate making process and is the result of separating the dark solids from the rich fat of the bean known as cocoa butter. Normally, this cocoa butter is recombined with the dark solids later in the process, but Nestlé decided to create a new confection by marketing cocoa butter as “white chocolate”.
Despite its long history, white chocolate was not officially recognized as chocolate at all. White chocolate does not contain cocoa solids—one of the main ingredients in traditional chocolate. In 2004, ten years after chocolate manufacturers filed the first petition, the FDA finally relaxed its definition of “chocolate” and accepted white chocolate into the family. According to the regulations, true white chocolate must contain at least 20% cocoa butter, 14% total milk solids, 3.5% milk fat, and less than 63% sugar.
Being a chocolate purist, I disagree with the FDA’s ruling. Although it is sweet and tasty confection, white chocolate simply does not satisfy me when I am craving chocolate. What do you think?

International Day of Radiant Peace

 Hobbit Day

Proposal Day

World Rhino Day

On this date in

  • 1789 – Congress authorized the office of Postmaster General.
  • 1792 – The French Republic was proclaimed.
  • 1862 – President Lincoln issued the preliminary Emancipation Proclamation. It stated that all slaves held within rebel states would be free as of January 1, 1863.
  • 1914 – Three British cruisers were sunk by one German submarine in the North Sea. 1,400 British sailors were killed. This event alerted the British to the effectiveness of the submarine.
  • 1927 – In Chicago, IL, Gene Tunney successfully defended his heavyweight boxing title against Jack Dempsey in the famous “long-count” fight.
  • 1949 – The Soviet Union exploded its first atomic bomb successfully.
  • 1955 – Commercial television began in Great Britain. The rules said that only six minutes of ads were allowed each hour and there was no Sunday morning TV permitted.
  • 1961 – President John F. Kennedy signed a congressional act that established the Peace Corps.
  • 1969 – Willie Mays hit his 600th career home run.
  • 1980 – A border conflict between Iran and Iraq developed into a full-scale war.
  • 1986 – President Ronald Reagan addressed the U.N. General Assembly and voiced a new hope for arms control.
  • 1988 – Canada’s government apologized for the internment of Japanese-Canadian’s during World War II. They also promised compensation.
  • 1992 – The United Nations General Assembly expelled Yugoslavia for its role in the war between Bosnia and Herzegovina.
  • 1998 – The United States and Russia signed two agreements. One was to privatize Russia’s nuclear program and the other was to stop plutonium stockpiles and nuclear scientists from leaving the country.
  • 1998 – President Clinton addressed the United Nations and told world leaders to “end all nuclear tests for all time”. He then sent the long-delayed global test-ban treaty to the Senate.

Celebrity Birthdays

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