August 7th – Particularly Preposterous Packaging Day

August 7, 2017 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Good morning fans of easy-open packaging. Today is Monday, August 7th. Today’s reasons to celebrate are:

Particularly Preposterous Packaging Day

Particularly Preposterous Packaging Day provides a path for people to proudly pontificate prolifically, profusely, and profoundly upon the propensity, and particular predilection of product producers to purposely package products in plastic which could probably survive Armageddon, seemingly solely for the purpose of perplexing people.
We’ve all encountered this situation at some point in our lives. Our long-awaited, hard-earned purchase arrives, but we are thwarted from enjoying it immediately because it’s encased in hard plastic, cardboard, and/or impossibly strong tape. And, I should also mention those accursed styrofoam ‘packing peanuts’ some of which, despite your best efforts to be tidy, somehow manage to escape to the nether-regions of your house only to turn up decades later.
Particularly Preposterous Packaging Day is set aside for us to bemoan and complain about consumer packaging that provides us with so many frustrating challenges. This holiday is also a celebration of the incongruous package directions and assembly instructions that are often the result of very literal translations from another language. We’ve all encountered those unintelligible assembly instructions too.
And, do I even need to mention the detrimental impact that all of this indestructible packaging is having on our environment? Our landfills are overflowing with the remnants of all of this plastic, cardboard, and styrofoam packaging. There is a place in the North Pacific known as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch – where, according to National Geographic, a collection of marine debris accumulates in the North Pacific Ocean. About 80% of the debris in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch comes from land-based activities in North America and Asia.
Then there is the risk of injury when you are trying to open your indestructible package to get to your prize. America doesn’t keep statistics on how many people are injured each year trying to open packages, but in England, where they do keep such statistics, 67,000 people reported that they were injured trying to open impenetrable packaging. The injuries consisted mostly of lacerations and sprained wrists, but still, opening your kid’s new Pokemon toy shouldn’t also involve a trip to the Emergency Room.
I understand manufacturers desire to have their products arrive at the retailer intact, but I mean really: Does that minuscule flash drive actually need to be encased in a package 10 times its size made from impenetrable plastic that could withstand a direct hit from a 100 megaton nuclear bomb? I also understand the need for tamper-proof packaging in today’s litigious and twisted society, but: Does that bottle of aspirin really need a cap that requires an advanced engineering degree to remove? I guess what I’m trying to illustrate is that you shouldn’t need a pair of scissors to open a package of scissors.

Assistance Dog Day

Assistance Dog Day, a part of International Assistance Dog Week, is a yearly event created by long-time paraplegic Marcie Davis. It is celebrated on Monday of the first full week in August and was created in 2009 to recognize all the devoted, hard working assistance dogs helping individuals with disability related limitations lead a more normal life. Its goal is to raise funds and increase awareness of the work they do.
Assistance dogs transform the lives of their human partners with debilitating physical and mental disabilities by serving as their companion, helper, aide, best friend, and close member of their family.
The goals of Assistance dog day are fourfold:

1)  To recognize and honor hard working assistance dogs.
2)  To raise awareness about assistance dogs.
3)  To educate the public about the work these special highly trained animals perform.
4)  To recognize heroic deeds performed by assistance dogs in our communities.

Today, we also should honor the puppy raisers and trainers of these magnificent dogs. Without them, there would be no assistance dogs.
There are many different kinds of assistance dogs, from the well-known guide dogs and hearing alert dogs that help people with vision and hearing loss, to lesser-known helpers like seizure alert and medical alert dogs that are trained to recognize the signs of heart attacks, strokes, and epileptic seizures.
Assistance dogs are not to be confused with other types of working dogs such as military and police dogs, search and rescue dogs, cadaver dogs, tracking dogs, drug-sniffing dogs, etc, who, although highly trained, provide a different type of service to humans.
A range of events are held to celebrate Assistance Dog Day, including dog shows, sponsored dog walks, talks and dog graduation ceremonies. Many assistance dog training facilities hold open days and tours on this day to show the work that they do.

Professional Speakers Day

Professional Speakers Day is a day to celebrate those people who have the ability to speak eloquently in front of other people. Most successful people have the ability to motivate, inspire, and inform others through their words. Preachers, politicians, and lawyers are good examples.
Many people are uncomfortable speaking to an audience, however, the skills to wax eloquently before large crowds can be taught. If you are among those who dislike speaking in public, use this holiday to improve your speaking skills: Watch some professional speakers in action, or enroll in a class to hone your speaking skills. If you have a speech impediment, seek out a speech therapist.
Factoid: The fear of public speaking is called Glossophobia.

National Lighthouse Day

National Lighthouse Day shines the spotlight on those iconic beacons of light that once burned brightly across America’s shorelines. On this date in 1789, through an Act of Congress, the Federal Government took over responsibility for building and operating our nation’s lighthouses. The government recognized the importance to ships at sea to find safe harbor during fog and storms. Some 200 years later, Congress designated this date as National Lighthouse Day.
Throughout maritime history, Lighthouses have shined their powerful, sweeping lights through the fog and storms, allowing ships of all kinds to find their way back to port during inclement weather. With the advent of radar and GPS technology, lighthouses have taken a backseat in guiding ships to port. However, they remain the universal symbol of a safe harbor to ships and communities that rely on the sea for their livelihood. There are numerous local and national lighthouse preservation societies and lighthouse organizations. They serve to preserve and promote lighthouses, and their historical significance to communities, and to the nation.
To celebrate this holiday, visit a lighthouse, or learn more about your local lighthouse preservation society. If there are none in your area, use today to learn about the history of lighthouses, and how they worked.

Purple Heart Day 

On this date in 1782, General George Washington designed the ‘Badge of Military Merit’ to honor enlisted men and noncommissioned officers for ‘any singularly meritorious action’. The badge was a figure of a heart in purple cloth or silk, edged with narrow lace or binding. This Badge was the precursor for today’s Purple Heart, which was designed by Ms. Elizabeth Will, an Army heraldic specialist, in 1931. The design sketch for the present medal of the Purple Heart consists of a purple enameled heart within a bronze quarter-inch border showing a relief profile of George Washington in Continental uniform.  Washington’s family coat of arms adorns the medal, along with an inscription inside the heart that reads, ‘For Military Merit’.
The Purple Heart is awarded to any member of the Armed Forces that has been wounded or killed, died as a result of a wound in battle, or otherwise designated by the President of the United States. This now has been expanded to include those persons killed as a result of friendly fire. With its forerunner, the Badge of Military Merit, the Purple Heart is the oldest military award that is still given to members of the U.S. military.

National Sea Serpent Day

National Sea Serpent Day recognizes one of the most famous sightings of a sea serpent in recent history. This sighting was made by the men and officers of HMS Daedalus in August 1848 during a voyage to Saint Helena in the South Atlantic.  The 60-foot long creature that they claim to have seen allegedly held its peculiar maned head above the ocean water.
From the Biblical Leviathan to the Loch Ness Monster, literature and folklore have been inundated with stories about treacherous sea monsters since man first ventured into the world’s oceans. National Sea Serpent Day pays tribute to all of these monsters of the deep.
Most scientists agree that we know more about the far reaches of space than we do what lurks in the depths of our oceans. Cryptozoologist Bruce Champagne identified more than 1,200 purported sea serpent sightings since the beginning of the 20th Century.  Most of these sightings can be explained as known animals such as oarfish, whales or sharks (particularly the frilled shark).  However, there are some cryptozoologists that suggest that the sea serpents are relics from the past like plesiosaurs, mosasaurs or other Mesozoic marine reptiles that somehow have survived (much like crocodiles and sharks). The idea which is often associated with lake monsters such as the Loch Ness Monster.
To celebrate National Sea Serpent Day, have a discussion with your friends about whether sea serpents are a myth or if they are real.  It should make for an afternoon of great conversation. Alternatively, you can head for the seashore and see if you can spot the next Leviathan – which segues nicely into our next holiday…

Beach Party Day

Dude! Surfs’s up. Let’s go check out the gnarly waves. Yep, it’s Beach Party Day. Unless you already live by the beach, it is probably hotter than blazes where you live right now. You won’t find a better excuse than Beach Party Day to gather your family together, grab that picnic basket, beach blanket, sand pail, and shovel, channel your inner Frankie and Annette, crank up the beach tunes and set sail to the nearest shoreline for a mid-summer shindig in the sand – So, what are you waiting for?

National Raspberries in Cream Day 

National Raspberries N’ Cream Day is pretty much self-explanatory. Put some raspberries in a bowl, whip some sweetened heavy cream, scoop it over the raspberries, stir, and enjoy. With the raspberry season in full swing, what better way to celebrate than with this simple and delicious treat. If you’re feeling particularly ambitious, you could also make a raspberry cream cake or pie as well.

Another Holiday

  •  Tu B’AvObserved the 15th of Av in the Hebrew calendar.

On This Date

  • In 1789 – The  War Department was established by Congress.
  • In 1888 – Theophilus Van Kannel received a patent for the revolving door.
  • In 1928 – The Treasury Department issued a new bill that was one-third smaller than the previous U.S. currency.
  • In 1942 – United States forces landed at Guadalcanal, marking the start of the first major allied offensive in the Pacific during World War II.
  • In 1959 – The United States launched Explorer 6, which sent back a picture of the Earth.
  • In 1960 – The West African country known as Côte d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast) gained its independence from France after being a member of the French Community for 2 years. Ivory Coast became a French Colony in 1893 under the leadership of explorer Louis Gustave Binger. Felix Houphouet-Boigny became the first president of the independent country and remained in office until his death in 1993.
  • In 1960 – The Cuban Catholic Church condemned the rise of communism in Cuba. Fidel Castro then banned all religious TV and radio broadcasts.
  • In 1964 – Congress passed the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, which gave President Johnson broad powers in dealing with reported North Vietnamese attacks on U.S. forces.
  • In 1970 – The first-ever computer chess tournament took place.
  • In 1974 – French stuntman Philippe Petit walked a tightrope strung between the twin towers of New York’s World Trade Center.  Petit, who was 24 years old at the time, walked 8 times across a high wire between the two towers in 45 minutes. The high wire was 1,350 feet from the ground.
  • In 1976 – Scientists in Pasadena, CA, announced that the Viking 1 spacecraft had found strong indications of possible life on Mars.
  • In 1990 – President George H.W. Bush ordered U.S. troops and warplanes to Saudi Arabia to guard against a possible invasion by Iraq.
  • In 1998 – Coordinated bomb attacks in American embassies in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, and Nairobi, Kenya killed over 200 people. Responsibility for the twin attacks in the capital cities was taken by an Al-Qaeda affiliate Egyptian Islamic Jihad.
  • In 2003 – In California, Arnold Schwarzenegger announced that he would run for the office of governor.
  • In 2008 – War between Russia and Georgia erupted. The conflict began over South Ossetia and Abkhazia, two breakaway regions of Georgia. When the two provinces broke away from Georgia in the early 1990’s and most of the international community did not recognize their independence. Russia, on the other hand, backed them and placed peacekeeping forces in the two regions. In 2008, tensions escalated between the two countries after Russia moved a large number of troops in the area. The war ended with Russian victory and with Georgia losing parts of South Ossetia and Abkhazia to Russia.

Noteworthy Birthdays

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

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