June 29th – Say Cheese

June 29, 2017 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Good morning shutterbugs. Today is Thursday, June 29, 2017. Today’s reasons to celebrate are:

Camera Day 

Cameras are everywhere these days. Whether you have thousands of dollars invested in the latest photography equipment, or just use the camera in your smartphone for snapshots, today is the day to get out and take some pictures. Update your family portrait, take pictures of that backyard project, or just go to a serene setting and take some nature shots.
The point of Camera Day is to get whatever camera you normally use and take pictures. Whether you use a conventional or digital camera, still or video; go out and photograph your day. If you are among the freakishly small minority of people who still don’t own a camera, today is the day to invest in one. They are relatively inexpensive and easy to operate. Cameras today are small, lightweight, and therefore portable; you can always have one close at hand to capture that “Kodak moment”.
Since the dawn of the new millennium, advances in photo technology have been staggering. The days of having to carry bags of expensive equipment to take good quality photographs are all but gone. Today’s digital technology makes taking memorable photographs simple, even for the novice photographer. Heck, some camera models let you edit your pictures while still in the camera.
Below are a few interesting facts about cameras and photography:

  • The word ‘photography’ is derived from the Greek words photos– for “light” and –graphos for “drawing.”
  • Literary accounts of pinhole cameras have been found in the writings of Aristotle and Euclid from the 5th and 4th centuries B.C.
  • The first known photograph is entitled “View from the Window at Le Gras” and was taken by Nicéphore Niépce in 1826. It took eight hours to develop.
  • English inventor William Fox Talbot invented the process that creates negative images in 1840.
  • The first color photograph was taken in 1861.
  • In 1884, George Eastman developed film technology, which replaced the cumbersome photographic plates.
  • Kodak unveiled the first commercially viable digital camera in 1991, and the modern age of photography was born.

National Handshake Day

National Handshake Day is celebrated each year on the last Thursday in June and urges you to shake the hand of at least one person that you normally would not have on any other day. Of all the forms of greeting, the handshake is perhaps one of the most ancient.
The origin of the handshake is hard to pinpoint. As it is a non-verbal mode of communication, it may have existed before written records. Theories suggest it was a way for medieval knights, Roman soldiers and other weapon carrying men to check for hidden daggers by grasping each other’s forearms in greeting. Drawings found in archaeological ruins in ancient Greece dating back to 5th century BC depicting two soldiers shaking hands support this theory.
An even older record in Egypt suggests the handshake held a different sort of power, the power of giving. According to Babylonian custom, kings would grasp the hand of the statue of the god Marduk before taking the throne. This act was repeated annually during the festival of Zagmuk to carry his power over into the next year. Even conquering Assyria continued the tradition. Women didn’t usually didn’t carry weapons, and therefore didn’t shake hands as a form of greeting.
Today, a handshake is offered upon meeting or parting. It is an expression of goodwill, gratitude, and/or congratulations. Many people believe that a handshake reveals something about the character of the person who gives it. A firm handshake reflects a confident personality while a floppy handshake reveals a shy one. As during ancient times, modern-day handshakes have different customs around the world. In the United States, Russia, Australia, Brazil and the United Kingdom handshakes tend to be firm, but even those with firm greetings have lingering differences.  However, in most Asian countries such as China, Japan, and South Korea the grip is light, and there should be no direct eye contact. However, in the Philippines make the eye contact while keeping the hold light.
Then there are the secret handshakes, those elaborate greetings signaling membership in a group, club or society. One of the more famous societies known to use secret handshakes is Freemasons.

Hug Holiday 

Hug Holiday does not mean to take a holiday from hugging. To the contrary, it means the exact opposite. Hug Holiday means that you should be generous with your hugs today – just don’t go overboard and run around willy-nilly hugging complete strangers. In today’s litigious society, that could only lead to trouble.
Hug Holiday was created by the “Hugs for Health Foundation”. According to the Foundation:

” Hug Holiday is founded on the premise that hugs, friendship and volunteer support are vital components to the overall senior care plan.”

Look for people today who might be in need of need a hug – such people in senior centers, or in hospitals. Focus on the elderly, the young, the sick, and the invalid. Also, if you can, make a donation to that institution during your visit.

Waffle Iron Day 

This holiday is on the cusp between being a food-related holiday and a ‘normal’ holiday. Back on March 25th, we celebrated Waffle Day, but Waffle Iron Day celebrates the appliance that enables us to create those crispy, golden brown treats.
Waffle irons originated in Belgium during the 14th century. These early contraptions consisted of two metal plates hinged together. The plates were then attached to a long pole, which allowed the cook to hold the iron over an open fire.
In 1869, a man named Cornelius Swarthout patented the first American waffle iron. This device was designed for cooking waffles over the burner of a wood or gas stove. Fifty years later, General Electric began producing the first electric waffle irons for everyday use.
Waffle irons have come a long way from those bulky contraptions of yesteryear. With the advances in non-stick technology, making waffles at home is no longer a “crapshoot” as to whether your waffles will stick to the iron plates of your waffle iron. Waffle irons are also reasonably priced these days (you can purchase a good one for under $30.00).
If you want to celebrate this holiday, but don’t yet own a waffle iron, do not despair. Waffles aren’t just for breakfast anymore. You can still go buy one today and enjoy chicken and waffles for dinner. How about a nice strawberry waffle? YUM! Enjoy a waffle or two for any meal today.

National Almond Butter Crunch Day 

Buttercrunch is a combination of toffee, covered with chocolate. It has a crunchy texture and a caramel flavor. The variation on the recipe which includes toasted almond sprinkles is the one we are celebrating today.
Making buttercrunch calls for a good candy thermometer and some cooking experience. Creating the toffee involves caramelizing sugar at high temperatures, which requires precision, timing and the right tools and safety techniques for a successful outcome.
So, unless you are feeling particularly adventurous today, or are an experienced cook, I recommend that you just go to your local “ye olde candy shoppe” and buy some Almond Butter Crunch to enjoy as a treat today.

National Bomb Pop Day 

National Bomb Pop Day is celebrated on the last Thursday in June and celebrates Bomb Pops. Since I am unfamiliar with Bomb Pops, I had to look them up. Bomb Pops are a frozen confection, like a popsicle, consisting of three different flavors on one stick, currently manufactured by Wells Enterprises (Blue Bunny Ice Cream).
This link is the same one that I used, and as soon as you have finished reading the article, you will be as informed about Bomb Pops as am I.

More Holidays

On This Date

  • In 1652 – Massachusetts declared itself an independent commonwealth.
  • In 1767 – The British Parliament approved the Townshend Revenue Acts. The acts imposed import duties on glass, lead, paint, paper, and tea shipped to America.
  • In 1776 – The Virginia constitution was adopted and Patrick Henry was made governor.
  • In 1860 – The first iron-pile lighthouse was completed at Minot’s Ledge, MA.
  • In 1888 – Professor Frederick Treves performed the first appendectomy in England.
  • In 1897 – The Chicago Cubs scored 36 runs in a game against Louisville, setting a record for runs scored by a team in a single game.
  • In 1925 – Marvin Pipkin filed for a patent for the frosted electric light bulb.
  • In 1927 – Two U.S. aviators completed the first transpacific flight. Lester Maitland and Albert Hegenberger had taken off from Oakland Municipal Airport the previous day. Their “Bird of Paradise” aircraft touched down in Oahu, Hawaii 25 hours and 50 minutes later.
  • In 1932 – Siam’s army seized Bangkok and announced an end to the absolute monarchy.
  • In 1933 – Silent film star Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle died in his sleep of a heart attack.
  • In 1941 – Joe DiMaggio got a base hit in his 42nd consecutive game. He broke George Sisler’s record from 1922.
  • In 1953 – The Federal Highway Act authorized the construction of 42,500 miles of freeway from coast to coast.
  • In 1966 – The United States bombed fuel storage facilities near the North Vietnamese cities of Hanoi and Haiphong.
  • In 1967 – Actress, model, and “pin-up girl” Jayne Mansfield was killed in an automobile accident.
  • In 1972 – The Supreme Court ruled that the death penalty could constitute “cruel and unusual punishment.” The ruling prompted states to revise their capital punishment laws. This decision enabled Charles Manson and his evil minions to live out their lives in prison at taxpayer expense rather than being executed for their heinous crimes.
  • In 1986 – Richard Branson broke the record for the fastest Atlantic crossing by boat. The British businessman took about three days to cross the ocean in his speedboat “Virgin Atlantic Challenger II”. He was denied the prestigious Blue Riband for the fastest crossing because he refueled on the way.
  • In 1990 – Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) were banned in an effort to protect the ozone layer. The London Amendment to the Montreal Protocol stipulated that CFCs be phased out by 2000 in developed countries and by 2010 in developing countries. CFCs are one of the substances most harmful to the ozone layer, escalating the greenhouse effect and global warming.
  • In 1995 – The shuttle Atlantis and the Russian space station Mir docked, forming the largest man-made satellite ever to orbit the Earth. The rendezvous in space marked a new age of cooperation between the former Cold War adversaries.
  • In 2000 – In Santa Rosa, CA, the official groundbreaking ceremony took place at the Charles M. Schulz Museum.
  • In 2003 – Iconic actress Katherine Hepburn died.
  • In 2007 – Apple released the first iPhone. The iPhone revolutionized the smartphone industry and for a while made Apple one of the world’s most valuable companies.

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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