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Palm Sunday is one of the most fun days at our church all year. Instead of our usual multiple services we have only one, and it begins with a Palm Procession down the boulevard.
First one of the pastors blows the ram's horn -- yes, a real ram's horn, just like they talk about in the Old Testament -- then Amos the donkey on his rope leads the way (no one riding him, Amos has never been ridden in his whole 10 years and wouldn't take kindly to it now, i think) and the congregation follows, singing songs and waving palm fronds. Actually, only some of us sing, as the music being played over the loudspeakers is usually from the local contemporary Christian radio station that plays the more modern stuff.
(You might hear some of the older members who usually attend the 7:45am service, where they only sing traditional hymns, grumble about the music, but if they don't like it they need to find some hymns they do like on CD and get that to the sound guys who set all of this up. The sound guys are the ones who do the contemporary service where we sing stuff like what's on the radio, so unless you give them something different and tell them to do it, they won't!)
After we process into the church for the service (Amos staying outside, of course, he's never been in a building besides a barn in his 10 years, either, and i think it would scare him to death), we go back out to the boulevard for a picnic and egg hunts and pony rides and face painting and a good time.
Boudreaux done had him a good time at church las' week, too. See, Boudreaux done become a usher, an' las' week it were his turn to take up de collectin'.
Well, dere be one in de congregation who don' like dat Boudreaux be a usher, an' dat be Gautraux. Gautraux don' never done liked Boudreaux in all his born days, since dey been in school all dem year back. Gautraux ain't never got a nice word 'bout Boudreaux.
Las' week, on de way home from de service, Boudreaux be grinnin', and Clothile say, "Boudreaux, what fo' you be grinnin' like de Chessy Cat?"
"Mais, I done got Gautraux now!" Boudreaux say.
"What done happen?" Clothile ax.
"You know dat Gautraux allus try make ever'body t'ink he better 'n me, an' tryin' get a story he can tell make me look bad. Well, dis time I got him! When de collectin' plate got to him, he be 'bout half asleep, an' he see de plate an' it startle him, so he reach in his pocket an' get him his wad o' money, an' peel off a five dollar an' den he be so confuse he drop de wad in de plate an' keep de five! Den his eyes get big an' he reach back in de plate an' take out de wad o' money an' drop in de five!
"Dat mean, now I got de story on him, how cheap he is wit' de church collectin' he take back what he put in!"
Big Bird Day -- it's his birthday, and he's still only 6 years old! (wish i could figure out that trick)
Bockbier/Bock Beer Day -- bock is the German word for strong, so a day to honor very strong, very dark, sweet, heavy beer
Buzzard Day -- Hinckley, OH, US (a day to celebrate the returning buzzards)
Camp Fire USA Birthday Week
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Day -- birth anniversary of children's author Bill Martin
Equinox -- at 11:02 UTC; related celebrations
Akitu Festival begins -- Ancient Sumerian Calendar
Chunfen -- China
Festival of Dumuzi -- Ancient Sumerian Calendar (return of the god of life and death to be with the goddess of life and bring the spring)
Festival of Iduna -- Ancient Norse Calendar (goddess of spring, keeper of the apples of youth for the gods)
Haru-no-Higan -- Japanese Buddhist
Harvest Festival and Coming Forth of the Great Ones from the House of Ra -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar
Jare -- Old Slavic Calendar
Kukulcan Snake God in Chichen Itza -- Yucatan (the snake shadow appears only at the equinox, and celebrations are held before and after)
Maslenitsa -- Asatru/Slavic Pagan Calendar
Ostara/Mabon -- Wicca/Pagan, Ancient Norse Calendar, Old Anglo-Teutonic Calendar
Pacha Pucuy -- Ancient Inca Calendar ("Earth Ripening")
Shunbun no Hi -- Japan
Taoist festival of Shen -- Deities of water, East, and Spring
Extraterrestrial Abductions Day -- another silly made up one, but try telling that to the people who believe in it!
Great American Meat Out Day -- go vegetarian today!
Independence Day -- Tunisia
International Day of the Francophonie / Journée internationale de la Francophonie
International Day of Happiness -- UN
International Earth Day -- the traditional date, still observed in many countries
Kiss Your Fiance Day -- do you really need to be reminded to do this? a wedding planner thinks so, that you should stop today and focus on each other, not the wedding
Lajos Kossuth Day -- Hungary
Martyrdom of Sibghatullah Shah Rashidi -- Pakistan
National Cherry Blossom Festival -- Washington, DC, US (through April 14; Sakura Matsuri Japanese Street Festival and parade on April 13)
National Native American HIV/AIDS Awareness Day -- nnaapc.org
National Jump Out! Day -- sponsored by Discovery Girls Magazine and Fundex Games; encouraging kids to get out and get active
National Ravioli Day
Nowruz/Nauruz/Novruz Bairam/Norooz (begins at sunset) -- Iranian diaspora, Kurdish diaspora, Zoroastrians; Afghanistan; Azerbaijan; Georgia; Iran (Persian New Year); Iraq; Kazakhstan; Kyrgyzstan; Tajikistan; Turkmenistan; Uzbekistan
celebrations go on for up to seven days or more
Naw Ruz -- Baha'i (New Year, and an end of the time of fasting; begins sunset)
Palm Sunday/Passion Sunday -- Christian/Orthodox Christian
Semana Santa -- Holy Week in Spain and Spanish speaking areas; special celebrations:
Mexico -- through the country, but especially in Chiapas, with processions, costumes, and even fireworks, music, dance, and syncretic rituals
Seville, Spain -- with hundreds of shuffling penitents in their hoods making the torch lit processions through the town; through Easter)
Proposal Day® -- a day for singles to propose to their true love; on the equinox, equal night and day symbolizing equal commitment; www.proposalday.com
Smile Rejuvenation Day -- another one from the ecard companies, make someone smile today
Snowman Burning Day -- Lake Superior State University, Sault Ste. Marie, MI, US (celebration of the start of spring; cannot confirm date, but always on or near the first day of spring)
St. Cuthbert of Lindisfane's Day (Patron of boatmen/mariners/sailors, shepherds; England; Durham, England; Lancaster, England; Northumbria, England; against plague and plague epidemics)
Won't You Be My Neighbor Day -- in honor of Mr. Rogers' birth anniversary
World Frog Day -- an initiative, on the first day of spring, to remind people of our fragile ecosystems and the disappearance of our amphibian friends
World Storytelling Day -- to celebrate the tradition of oral storytelling
Zipper Day -- the 'Separable Fastener' by Gideon Sundback was patented this day in 1917
Louis "Louie" Vito, 1988
Fernando Torres, 1984
Kathy Ireland, 1963
David Thewlis, 1963
Holly Hunter, 1958
Spike Lee, 1957
Theresa Russel, 1957
Jimmie Vaughan, 1951
William Hurt, 1950
Bobby Orr, 1948
Pat Riley, 1945
Paul Junger Witt, 1943
Brian Mulroney, 1939
Lois Lowry, 1937
Hal Linden, 1931
Fred "Mr." Rogers, 1928
Carl Reiner, 1922
Marian McPartland, 1920
Bill Martin, Jr., 1916
Ozzie Nelson, 1906
B.F. Skinner, 1904
Frederick Winslow Taylor, 1856
Henrik Ibsen, 1828
"Uncle Tom's Cabin"(Publication date), 1852
Today in History:
Sixth recorded perihelion passage of Halley's Comet, 141
Maximus Thrax, who never set foot in Rome, becomes the first of the Foreign or Barracks Emperors of the Roman Empire, 235
A Saturn/Jupiter/Mars-conjunction is thought to be the "cause of plague epidemic," 1345
Sir Walter Raleigh is freed from the Tower of London after 13 years of imprisonment, 1616
France and Spain sign an accord for fighting protestantism, 1627
Nadir Shah occupies Delhi in India and sacks the city, stealing the jewels of the Peacock Throne, 1739
The Great Fire of Boston destroys 349 buildings, 1760
After escaping from Elba, Napoleon enters Paris with a regular army of 140,000 and a volunteer force of around 200,000, beginning his "Hundred Days" rule, 1815
US and Siam sign commercial treaty, 1833
Harriet Beecher Stowe's "Uncle Tom's Cabin" is published in Boston, 1852
An earthquake completely destroys Mendoza, Argentina, 1861
The first AC power plant in the US begins commercial operation, in Massachusetts, 1886
In the first known intercollegiate basketball game, Yale beats Penn 32-10, 1897
The first international figure skating championship takes place, in New Haven, Connecticut, 1914
Albert Einstein publishes his general theory of relativity, 1916
The Arts Club of Chicago hosts the opening of Pablo Picasso's first United States showing, 1923
A test of a practical radar apparatus is made by Rudolf Kuhnold in Germany, 1934
The precursor of the European Space Agency, ESRO (European Space Research Organization) is established, 1964
Libby Riddles becomes the first woman to win the 1,135-mile Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, 1985
Ferdinand Marcos's widow, Imelda Marcos, goes on trial for bribery, embezzlement, and racketeering, 1990
Stephen Harper wins the leadership of the newly created Conservative Party of Canada, becoming the party's first leader, 2004
A magnitude 6.6 earthquake hits Fukuoka, Japan, its first major quake in over 100 years, 2005
Cyclone Larry makes landfall in eastern Australia, destroying most of the country's banana crop, 2006
In Morocco, thousands rally to demand and end to corruption and more civil rights for the Moroccan people, 2011