May 12th – Florence Nightingale Day…Not

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

Good morning everyone. Today is Friday, May 12th. Today’s reasons to celebrate are:

Prelude: Florence Nightingale is considered the founder of modern nursing, and for all intents and purposes, today should be Florence Nightingale Day…but it is not, at least not officially. Although there is no official Florence Nightingale Day, four of today’s holidays center around her birthday in one way or another, with today’s first holiday, International Nurses’ Day being no exception.

International Nurses’ Day

International Nurses’ Day has always been celebrated worldwide on May 12th, the birthday of Florence Nightingale. It is the last holiday of Nurses’ Week, a week dedicated to the many types of nurses and nursing services, and their vital role in health care.
It all began in 1953, when Dorothy Sutherland, an official with the U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, proposed to President Dwight D. Eisenhower that he proclaim some form of a “Nurses’ Day”, but he did not approve it at the time. The International Council of Nurses has celebrated Nurses’ Day since 1965, and in January 1974, made it official by proclaiming May 12th  as the date to celebrate International Nurses’ Day.
Nurses are the backbone of the healthcare system. They facilitate the ‘Hospital-Doctor-Patient’ paradigm, and whether it is preventive care, home care or hospital care, nurses are an indispensable part of health care. Not only do they carry out prescribed treatment measures, they also give comfort and advice to patients during times of stress and uncertainty. Being a nurse requires an enormous amount of knowledge and many diverse skills. They spend years perfecting and developing these skills while working in intense environments where extreme stress is just a part of the job. Nurses help bring new life into the world, care tirelessly for the sick and injured, and sometimes watch the patients they did everything to save pass away despite their best efforts. On many occasions, it was a vigilant nurse who noticed a mistake in a doctor’s prescription in time to save someone’s life.  Ever the underdog, nurses play a key role in all of our medical institutions.

International Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Awareness Day

International Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Awareness Day is observed to improve the knowledge of the public, policymakers, and healthcare professionals about the symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, and illustrate the need for a better understanding of this complex illness.
Chronic fatigue syndrome is the common name for a group of debilitating medical conditions characterized by persistent fatigue that can last for over six months in adults. The fatigue is not due to exertion, is not significantly relieved by rest, and is not caused by other medical conditions. Symptoms of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome include malaise after exertion; unrefreshing sleep, widespread muscle and joint pain, sore throat, headaches of a type not previously experienced, cognitive difficulties, chronic and severe mental and physical exhaustion, and other characteristic symptoms in a previously healthy and active person.
Although fatigue is a common symptom in many illnesses, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is comparatively rare. Estimates vary from 7 to 3,000 cases per 100,000 adults, and national health organizations have estimated more than one million Americans have the disease. Chronic Fatigue Syndrome occurs more often in women than men.
The date for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Awareness Day was chosen to honor the birthday of Florence Nightingale, an English army nurse who was a pioneer of the Red Cross Movement.

National Fibromyalgia Awareness Day

National Fibromyalgia Awareness Day seeks to raise awareness about this debilitating disease. Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition that causes intense pain all over the body, as well as a host of other symptoms. It affects more than 6 million people in the United States. Doctors classify fibromyalgia as a syndrome, which means it has a group of signs, symptoms, and characteristics that occur together.
People with fibromyalgia often hurt all over and feel exhausted all the time. Those symptoms often force you to seriously limit your physical activity. It’s also common to have problems concentrating and remembering things. Because fibromyalgia is frequently misunderstood, family, friends, co-workers and even medical providers may not believe the person is actually sick. A proper diagnosis of fibromyalgia can often take months.
While fibromyalgia is treatable, and a lot of treatment options are available, you’ll likely need to experiment with different options before you find what works best for you. Every case of fibromyalgia is different, and no treatment works for everyone. Sufferers of the disease need to work closely with their doctor to custom tailor a treatment regimen that helps you become more functional.
Doctors coined the term fibromyalgia (fibro = fibrous tissue, my = meaning muscle, algia = pain) in 1976, but it wasn’t until 1990 that the American College of Rheumatology developed diagnostic criteria. While muscle pain is the primary symptom, research has found that nothing is wrong with the muscles themselves. Becoming familiar with the symptoms of fibromyalgia, along with your physician, can help decide the proper course of action for you.
This holiday piggy-backs on the two previous holidays today by being celebrated on the birthday of Florence Nightingale.

International Awareness Day

International Awareness Day is merely a combination of International Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Day, National Fibromyalgia Day, and a few others, all celebrated on the birthday of Florence Nightingale. Click the title for more information.

OK, we’re finally finished with Florence Nightingale…on with the rest of today’s holidays.

Fintastic Friday: Giving Sharks a Voice

Fintastic Friday was created by Whale Times and is always celebrated on the second Friday in May. It was created to increase awareness of the plight of sharks. Movies, books and news outlets portray sharks as little more than killing machines lurking offshore waiting for your unsuspecting munchkin to venture into their realm and snatch them up. This leads to a misguided hatred and fear of sharks and results in a lack of compassion towards them.
In reality, on average only 10 people are killed by sharks a year worldwide, yet, each year, 73 million sharks are killed…mostly just for their fins. Shark populations have plummeted 75% to 90% in many ecosystems, and worldwide, sharks have little or no protection. Granted, sharks aren’t the most cuddly and adorable of creatures on the planet, but they do play a vital role in the ocean’s ecosystem.
Fintastic Friday celebrates sharks and encourages everyone to find ways to change public opinion about them. Think of it as a kind of Earth Day for sharks.

National Limerick Day

National Limerick Day marks the birthday of writer Edward Lear (1812-1888), who is credited with popularizing this style of poetry with his book “Book of Nonsense” published in 1846.
The name limerick came from Limerick, Ireland, and could date back as much as five hundred years. A limerick is a poem which consists of five lines. The first two lines and the fifth line must rhyme. The third and fourth lines must also rhyme, but not necessarily with the other lines. Its distinctive meter and rhyming pattern lend themselves well to nonsense verse, and so Limericks are often childish or obscene…or both.
The following is an example (not necessarily a good one, but an example nonetheless) which I came up with on the spur of the moment.

There was a young man from Bako.
He was often considered a flako.
He lived life in full,
It was not dull,
Of that, there is no mistako.

I warned you. Celebrate today by writing a few limericks of your own, or reading some humorous limericks by others. Do you have a favorite that you would like to share? (Keep ‘em clean folks).

Odometer Day

An odometer is an apparatus built into your vehicle (whether it be a car, truck, etc.) that records and displays how many miles it has been driven. You probably simply take it for granted…until it comes time to sell your car, buy a used car, or your insurance company wants your odometer reading to determine your insurance rate.
Odometer Day celebrates the anniversary of the invention of the odometer. On this date in 1847, Mormon pioneer William Clayton, while crossing the plains in a covered wagon invented the first crude odometer, which he called a roadometer. The first odometer for automobiles was invented by Arthur P. and Charles H. Warner of Beloit, Wisconsin, in 1903 and was patented as the Auto-Meter.
Crude forms of measuring distance traveled existed before this, but generally, they involved calculating circumference of a wheel, tying a rag to one of the spokes, and counting the revolutions of the wheel as they traveled. I assume they assigned a reliable person to count the revolutions of the wheel and make the calculations.

National Nutty Fudge Day

National Nutty Fudge Day celebrates fudge, a relative newcomer to the confectionery scene. Fudge is thought to have been first created in the United States in the late 1800’s. The first documented fudge recipes come from two female college students in New York during 1888. The girls would make batches of fudge and sell them for 40 cents a pound. The first recipes for fudge were very complex and precise. Today the majority of fudge recipes are simple enough for even novice cooks to get good results. Make some fudge today, or visit your favorite confectioner and buy some. Whichever option you choose, in the spirit of National Nutty Fudge Day, ensure that it contains some kind of nuts.

More Holidays 

On This Date 

  • In 1831 – Edward Smith became the first indicted bank robber in the U.S.
  • In 1888 – Charles Sherrill of the Yale track team became the first runner to use the crouching start for a fast break in a foot race.
  • In 1926 – The airship Norge became the first vessel to fly over the North Pole.
  • In 1932 – The body of Charles and Anna Lindbergh’s son was found just a few miles from the Lindbergh home near Hopewell, NJ.
  • In 1940 – The Nazi conquest of France began with the German army crossing Meuse River.
  • In 1942 – The Soviet Army launched its first major offensive of World War II and took Kharkov in the eastern Ukraine from the German army.
  • In 1943 – The Axis forces in North Africa surrendered during World War II.
  • In 1949 – The Soviet Union announced an end to the Berlin Blockade.
  • In 1950 – The American Bowling Congress abolished its white males-only membership restriction after 34 years.
  • In 1970 – Ernie Banks, of the Chicago Cubs, hit his 500th home run.
  • In 1975 – U.S. merchant ship Mayaguez was seized by Cambodian forces in international waters.
  • In 1978 – The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced that they would no longer exclusively name hurricanes after women.
  • In 1984 – South African prisoner Nelson Mandela saw his wife for the first time in 22 years.
  • In 1992 – Four suspects were arrested in the beating of truck driver Reginald Denny at the start of the Los Angeles riots.
  • In 2002 – Former President Carter arrived in Cuba for a visit with Fidel Castro. It was the first time a U.S. head of state, in or out of office, had gone to the island since Castro’s 1959 revolution.
  • In 2003 – In Texas, fifty-nine Democratic lawmakers went into hiding over a dispute with Republican’s over a congressional redistricting plan.

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.



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