Thursday, August 16, 2012

Important Things in Life

"Mom, I went and registered to vote today.  For party, I put independent."  Bigger Girl came in from errands.

That's okay, i put costume.  Not really, but i wanted to.

"Oh, and I applied online to be part of the Sea Shepherds, you know, those people who try to stop Japanese whaling and shark finning and turtle killing?  But they asked if I've been convicted of a felony in the last 10 years, so they have to count me out."

Very funny.

"Well, anyway, I'm fixing a gift basket for my brother to take with him when he leaves.  It will have stuff he will need to survive outside of Louisiana, like Tabasco sauce and Tony's seasoning and spicy potato chips.  And real coffee.  Also, i'm leaving him a note telling him not to follow any yellow brick roads."

Good advice.

"I agree," he said, walking in at that point.  "And thanks for the gift basket."

"You're welcome.  We'll have to ship more when you run out.  You can't live up there without this stuff."

At least my kids know what is important in life.  Lots of spice, and decent coffee.

Today is:

Baba Au Rhum Day -- of course, on rum day, bake some cake with the stuff!

Bratwurst Day

Bucyrus Bratwurst Festival -- Bucyrus, OH, US (through the 18th; food and fun celebration of German heritage)

Children's Day -- Paraguay

Daimonji Bonfire -- Mt. Nyoigadake, Kyoto, Japan (spectacular bonfires in the shapes of word pictures on the mountains surrounding the city)

Elvis Presley Day -- can you believe he's been gone 35 years?

Festival of the Minstrels -- Tutbury Castle, UK (middle ages; celebrated with great pomp, as the Duke of Lancaster had decreed that they each year elect a new king of the minstrels)

Fete de l'Independance -- Gabon (National Day)

Harmonic Convergence Day -- modern followers of Maya and Aztec calendars

Joe Miller's Joke Day -- anniversary of the death of English comic actor Joseph Miller in 1738

Kentucky State Fair and World Championship Horse Show -- Louisville, KY, US (if you love horses, it's the place to be since 1904; through the 26th)

Little League 2012 World Series -- South Williamsport, PA, US (through the 26th)

Madonna del Voto Day -- Siena, Italy (a/k/a Palio dell'Assunta, 2nd of the traditional yearly horse races)

Milwaukee Irish Fest -- Milwaukee, WI, US (through sunday; the world's largest Irish music and cultural event outside of the Emerald Isle)

National Airborne Day -- US (honors all Airborne Military)

National Tell a Joke Day -- seems internet generated, probably because of Joe Miller

National Rum Day

Remember What Your Spouse Wore the First Time You Met Day -- internet generated and dangerous!

Restoration of the Republic -- Dominican Republic

Roller Coaster Day -- the first one was patented this day in 1898

Soldiers' Reunion Celebration -- Newton, NC, US (the oldest patriotic event of its kind in the US, honoring all veterans; annually since 1889)

Sour Herring Premiere -- Sweden (by ordinance, the year's supply of sour herring may begin to be sold on the third Thursday in August)

Stay Home With Your Kids Day -- begun by someone who decided, since we have a take them to work day, we should also have a day to just hang around the house with them

St. Roch's Day (Patron of bachelors, dogs, falsely accused people, invalids, surgeons, tile makers; of over 20 cities in Italy as well as Istanbul, Turkey; for relief from pestilence; against cholera, diseased cattle, epidemics, knee problems, plague [Black Death], skin diseases and rashes)

St. Stephen of Hungary's Day (Patron of bricklayers, kings, masons, stonecutters; Hungary; against the death of children)

Xicolatada -- Palau-de-Cerdagne, France (hot chocolate festival)*

Birthdays Today:

Timothy Hutton, 1960
Angela Bassett, 1958
Madonna, 1958
James Cameron, 1954
Kathie Lee Gifford, 1953
Leslie Ann Warren, 1946
Eydie Gorme, 1932
Frank Gifford, 1930
Ann Blyth, 1928
Fess Parker, 1925
Menachem Begin, 1913
George Meany, 1894
T. E. Lawrence (of Arabia), 1888
Hongxi Emperor of China, 1378

Today in History:

Henry VIII defeats the French at the Battle of Guinegate/Battle of the Spurs, forcing the French to retreat, 1513
Jack Broughton formulates the earliest code of rules for boxing, 1743
Chang and Eng Bunker, the original "Siamese" twins, arrive in Boston to be exhibited, 1829
U.S. President James Buchanan inaugurates the new transatlantic telegraph cable by exchanging greetings with Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom, 1858
Arica, Peru (now Chile) is devastated by a tsunami which followed a magnitude 8.5 earthquake, 1868
Gold is discovered in the Klondike, at Bonanza Creek, 1896
Edwin Prescott patents the roller coaster, 1898
In Valparaiso, Chile, an 8.6 earthquake followed by fire destroys the city and kills 20,000, 1906
The first color sound cartoon, called Fiddlesticks, is made by Ub Iwerks, 1930
Democrats nominate Adlai E. Stevenson as presidential candidate, 1956
Joseph Kittinger parachutes from a balloon over New Mexico at 102,800 feet (31,300 m), setting three records that still stand today: High-altitude jump, free-fall, and highest speed by a human without an aircraft, 1960
A solar flare from the Sun creates a geomagnetic storm that affects micro chips, leading to a halt of all trading on Toronto's stock market, 1989

*Yes, they celebrate a hot chocolate festival in the summer.  It all started when the 15th of August was a feast day on which the locals always drank a bit much, and the chocolatier of the town claimed his brew was a good remedy the day after.  The original festival on the 15th has ceased, but the hot chocolate is brewed to this day, served at 11am promptly.


  1. Your daughter is very thoughtful towards her brother. I credit to you and your parenting, no doubt.

  2. Thanks, Stephen; it's great when they aren't trying to kill each other. ;)