April 14th – “Look! Up in the Sky”

April 14, 2017 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Good morning star-gazers. Today is Friday, April 14, 2017. Today’s reasons to celebrate are:

Look Up at the Sky Day

No. This holiday does not pertain to the impending arrival of a superhero from the planet Krypton racing through the sky to save us from a band of ruffians or a global disaster.
Look Up at the Sky Day encourages people to look up at the sky occasionally today. You never know what wonders you will see. You may see a unique type of aircraft, a flock of birds, or just a group of clouds arranged in an unusual pattern.
The night-time sky is full of wonderment too. The stars provide an endless source of enjoyment. There are countless constellations upon which to gaze. You might get the opportunity to see a “shooting star”. The moon is also interesting to look at.
Yes, there is a lot to see if you just look up.  I know people who walk around with their ‘head in the clouds’ all the time, but they are usually oblivious to what is going on around them. On Look Up at the Sky Day you are supposed to actually look up and see what is there.

National Dolphin Day

Dolphins are charismatic water mammals, much-loved for their playfulness and agility. They are social, intelligent, and are captivating to watch. Dolphins are marine mammals, (meaning that they have to surface regularly to breathe), and are related to whales and porpoises – in fact, Killer whales (Orcas) are actually dolphins. They are found all over the world, mostly in salt water, but some do live in fresh water. They prefer the shallower seas of the continental shelves. There are 36 different species of dolphins, ranging in color and size. They range in size from 4 ft to up to 30 feet. Dolphins are carnivores with their diet consisting mostly of fish and squid. They are social animals and live in pods of about a dozen individuals, however, pods do occasionally merge in areas where there is an abundance of food, forming superpods, which may exceed 1,000 dolphins. Dolphins can, and do, establish strong bonds within their pods and will stay with injured or ill individuals, even helping them to breathe by bringing them to the surface if needed. Dolphins have their own ‘language’ and communicate with each other using special sounds and whistles.
Occasionally, you will see the dolphins leaping above the surface of the water. There ar various reasons for this behavior. When traveling, jumping saves them energy as there is less friction while in the air – this is known as “porpoising”. Some other explanations posited for their leaping include orientation, social display, fighting, non-verbal communication, entertainment and attempting to dislodge parasites.
National Dolphin Day is perhaps one of the most well-known ‘unofficial’ holidays. Having gained attention in the 1990’s and continuing into the present day, this holiday not only focuses on their playfulness and all-around lovableness but the plight of dolphins worldwide. Dolphins face numerous threats. From climate change, pollution, and oil spills, to hunting, boat collisions, fishing nets, and tuna fishing, the biggest threat to these fascinating creatures is mankind. Traditionally, National Dolphin Day places a particular emphasis on curtailing Japanese dolphin hunts, as these have received much publicity during the last decade. Each year, this worldwide event continues to gain a growing number of supporters, and hopefully, the near future will see a complete ban on dolphin hunting and it will indeed be a happy ending for both the dolphins and their human advocates.
More Dolphin Factoids:

  • A male dolphin is called a bull, a female is called a cow, and a baby is called a calf.
  • Dolphins are known to have acute eyesight both in and out of the water.
  • Dolphins have a well-developed sense of touch, with free nerve endings densely packed in the skin.
  • Dolphins can hear frequencies ten times or more above the upper limit of adult humans.
  • Dolphins are capable of making a broad range of sounds using nasal air sacs located just below the blowhole.
  • Dolphins communicate with each other using special sounds and whistles.
  • Dolphins can recognize themselves.
  • A study recently conducted by the United States National Marine Mammal Foundation revealed that dolphins, like humans, develop a natural form of type 2 diabetes which may lead to a better understanding of the disease and new treatments for both humans and dolphins.
  • Dolphins are known to commit suicide when under duress.

Reach as High as You Can Day

Reach as High as You Can Day is observed annually on this date.
The word reach can be defined in many ways. Dictionary.com has 28 different definitions for the word. For the purposes of this holiday, Reach as High as You Can Day is defined as reaching higher than we think we can. We often become complacent and this holiday is just a reminder not to let your dreams go adrift. It encourages you to expand your horizons and ‘reach for the sky’.
Is there something that you have always wanted; a new job, to complete a few items on your “bucket list” that have thus far eluded you, or maybe just a date with that ‘one’ girl or guy, but felt that it was out of reach? Well, Reach as High as You Can Day is the day to just “go for it”. Who knows, you might just get what you want.

International Moment of Laughter Day

International Moment of Laughter Day is a day to laugh loudly and laugh often. Watch a funny movie, read an amusing book, share your favorite jokes, and indulge in some good old-fashioned silliness to celebrate the occasion.
In addition to spreading joy, laughter has many health benefits. Studies have shown that there is indeed some truth to the old saying, “laughter is the best medicine.” Laughter can act as an antidote to pain, stress, and conflict. It also strengthens our immune systems, boosts circulation, and relaxes muscles. Whether you giggle, chuckle, chortle, cackle, snort, or guffaw, share a moment of laughter with friends, family, and strangers today.

Ex-Spouse Day

For a wide variety of reasons, marriages don’t always work out. Recent studies show that the divorce rate for first marriages is in the neighborhood of 50 percent. While some people find that they get along better after a divorce than they did during the marriage, that sadly isn’t always the case. Some divorces are extremely contentious, and the experience can be painful and traumatic for everyone involved. Regardless whether it is a friendly separation or not, there needs to be a way to manage the situation when children are involved.
Unless you are one of the lucky few who remains on friendly terms with your ex-spouse or significant other after a divorce, this holiday makes absolutely no sense to me. I can tell you horror story after horror story about some of my friends’ breakups while I was in the military, and while driving a truck over-the-road. I guess that today, you are only supposed to think about the positive aspects of the broken relationship – not the fact that your ex-spouse was a petty, vindictive [bitch or bastard] and behaved like the Devil incarnate throughout the whole process.

Good Friday  

Good Friday is a Christian religious holiday commemorating the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and his death at Calvary. The holiday is observed during Holy Week as part of the Paschal Triduum on the Friday preceding Easter Sunday, and may, but not necessarily, coincide with the Jewish observance of Passover. Good Friday is a widely instituted legal holiday in many national governments around the world, including in most Western countries (especially among Anglican and Catholic nations) as well as in 12 U.S. states. Some countries, such as Germany, have laws prohibiting certain acts, such as dancing and horse racing, that are seen as profaning the solemn nature of the day.
In the United States, Good Friday is not a government holiday at the federal level; however, individual states, counties, and municipalities may observe the holiday. Good Friday is a state holiday in Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Indiana, Kentucky (half day), Louisiana, New Jersey, North Carolina, North Dakota, Tennessee and Texas. State and local government offices and courts are closed, as well as some banks and postal offices in these states, and in those counties and municipalities where Good Friday is observed as a holiday. Good Friday is also a holiday in the U.S. territories of Guam, U.S. Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico. The stock markets are closed on Good Friday but the foreign exchange and bond trading markets open for a partial business day. Most retail stores remain open while some of them may close early. Public schools and universities are often closed on Good Friday, either as a holiday of its own, or part of spring break. The postal service operates, and banks regulated by the federal government do not close for Good Friday. In some governmental contexts, Good Friday has been referred to by a generic name, particularly “spring holiday”, presumably to avoid accusations of violating the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, although neither the word “good” nor “Friday” by themselves have any religious connotation.

National Pecan Day

Pecan trees are the only nut tree native to America. Pecan is an Algonquian (native American) word meaning “a nut requiring a stone to crack”. The Pecan is a nut native to the south central area of the Untied States, it is also found in areas of Mexico. It is a popular ingredient in southern cuisine…such as Pecan Pie. Because of its rich buttery flavor, it is often used in sweet dishes and desserts. On their own, Pecans are a very healthy food. They are high in protein, vitamin E, and antioxidants. They have been shown to help lower cholesterol levels and the risk of gallstones in women.
When buying Pecans pick those only those that are plump. You may store pecans in a cool dark place for up to a year. Shelled pecans may be stored in a glass or plastic container in the refrigerator for up to 9 months. You may also store the shelled nuts in a plastic ‘Ziploc’ bag for up to two years.
I love pecans. We had two pecan trees in our yard when I was growing up, so we were fortunate enough to have pecans anytime we wanted.

More Holidays

On this Date

  • In 1775 – The first abolitionist society in the United States was organized in Philadelphia with Ben Franklin as president.
  • In 1828 – The first edition of Noah Webster’s dictionary was published under the name “American Dictionary of the English Language.”
  • In 1865 – President Abraham Lincoln was shot at Ford’s Theater. He died early the next morning. The assassin, John Wilkes Booth, wanted to revive the Confederate cause, mere days after their surrender to the Union Army, bringing the American Civil War to an end.
  • In 1894 – First public showing of Thomas Edison’s kinetoscope took place.
  • In 1902 – James Cash (J.C.) Penney opened his first retail store in Kemmerer, WY. It was called the Golden Rule Store.
  • In 1910 – President William Howard Taft threw out the first ball for the Washington Senators and the Philadelphia Athletics.
  • In 1912 – The Atlantic passenger liner Titanic, on its maiden voyage hit an iceberg and began to sink. More than 1500 people lost their lives and about 700 survived. It was one of the worst peacetime maritime disasters in history.
  • In 1918 – The U.S. First Aero Squadron engaged in America’s first aerial dogfight with German aircraft over Toul, France in WW I.
  • In  1925 – WGN (Chicago) became the first radio station to broadcast a regular season major league baseball game. The Cubs beat the Pirates 8-2.
  • In 1939 – The John Steinbeck novel “The Grapes of Wrath” was first published.
  • In 1956 – Ampex Corporation of Redwood City, CA, demonstrated the first commercial magnetic tape recorder for sound and picture.
  • In 1966 – Swiss pharmaceutical firm Sandoz discontinued production of LSD.
  • In 1969 – For the first time, a major league baseball game was played in Montreal, Canada.
  • In 1970 – Two students were fatally shot at an anti-war protest at Jackson State University, Mississippi.
  • In 1984 – The Texas Board of Education began requiring that the state’s public school textbooks describe the evolution of human beings as “theory rather than fact”.
  • In 1986 – President Reagan announced the U.S. air raid on military and terrorist-related targets in Libya.
  • In 1986 – The largest and heaviest hailstones ever recorded hit Bangladesh. The lumps of ice weighed about 1 kg (2.2 lb). At total of 92 people reportedly died as a result.
  • In 1988 – In New York, real estate tycoons Harry and Leona Helmsley were indicted for income tax evasion.
  • In 1988 – The Soviet Union agreed to withdraw from Afghanistan. Soviet troops had invaded the country in 1979 to support the communist rulers. They were defeated primarily by the Mujahideen, who were groups of militant Islamists sponsored by the CIA.
  • In 1990 – Cal Ripken of the Baltimore Orioles began a streak of 95 errorless games and 431 total chances by a shortstop.
  • In 1998 – The state of Virginia ignored the requests from the World Court and executed a Paraguayan for the murder of an American woman.
  • In 1999 – Pakistan test-fired a ballistic missile that was capable of carrying a nuclear warhead and reaching its rival neighbor India.
  • In 2000 – After five years of deadlock, Russia approved the START II treaty that calls for the scrapping of the United States and Russian nuclear warheads. The Russian government warned it would abandon all arms-control pacts if Washington continued with an anti-missile system.
  • In 2003 – The Human Genome Project was completed. The project dedicated to mapping the genes of the human genome was started in October 1990.

Noteworthy Birthdays

If you were born on this date, Happy Birthday. You share your birthday with the following list of illustrious individuals – and about 20-million other people.

  • Anne Mansfield Sullivan 1866 – Author (“The Miracle Worker”).
  • Arnold (Joseph) Toynbee 1889 – Historian.
  • John Gielgud 1904 – Actor.
  • Rod Steiger 1925 – Actor.
  • Gloria Jean 1926 – Actress.
  • Jay Robinson 1930 – Actor.
  • Bradford Dillman 1930 – Actor.
  • Buddy Knox 1933 – Singer.
  • Frank Serpico 1934 – NYPD officer(retired).
  • Joan Darling 1935 – Actress.
  • Julie Christie 1941 – Actress.
  • Pete Rose 1941 – Baseball player.
  • John Shea 1949 – Actor.
  • Brad Garrett 1960 – Actor.
  • Robert Carlyle 1961 – Actor.
  • Anthony Michael Hall 1968 – Actor.
  • Adrien Brody 1973 – Actor.
  • Sarah Michelle Gellar 1977 – Actress.
  • Vivien Cardone 1993 – Actress.
  • Abigail Breslin 1996 – Actress.

Leave a Comment »

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Entries and comments feeds.

%d bloggers like this: