Ireland Calling: New month, new day, new date, new chapter, new page, new wishes.
November, a time of renewal and thankfulness. It’s the month to raise awareness of the sweet potato (Sweet Potato Awareness Month) and appreciate the pomegranate (National Pomegranate Month). Although, with the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, something tells me we won’t have to go out of our way to celebrate these two produce items.
In honor of my new hobby, I must start by acknowledging that November is also National Blog Posting Month, which might someday inspire me to move from blogs to a book, whereby I will then celebrate National Novel Writing Month. There are many other celebrations, including Movember and National Homeless Youth Month, but I promise to shave (or wax) this month, and I thankfully don’t know any homeless youth.
The third Thursday of the month, November 17, brings us The Great American Smokeout and the following week, we celebrate National Games Week (Words with Friends, anyone?). Of course, we eat turkey and the fixin’s on November 25, while the following day, some of us will brave Black Friday and go to the mall, or Buy Nothing Day and stay home and watch football. You could save your holiday shopping for November 26, and spend your money on Small Business Saturday.
Food plays a big part of celebrating in November. On November 18, we can enjoy apple cider (National Apple Cider Day) and vichyssoise (you guessed it: National Vichyssoise Day). November 19 is Carbonated Beverage with Caffeine Day and November 26, we get to eat dessert on National Cake Day, National Bavarian Cream Pie Day and National Parfait Day. (Be careful: November is also National Diabetes Month.)
One of my favorite November days is Have a Bad Day Day on November 19. If you’re having a bad day, you shouldn’t have to suffer alone, so wish everyone you meet “Have a Bad Day,” but do it with the brightest, cheeriest smile you can put on your face. Might there be a connection between this day and another celebration: World Toilet Day? Perhaps.
An unpopular day for some is Sunday, November 6 when Daylight Saving Time (DST) ends. In 1784, Benjamin Franklin suggested DST as a way to save candles. Fast Time (as it was called then) was signed into law by President Woodrow Wilson in 1918 to help the war effort during World War I. It was discontinued after the war until President Franklin Roosevelt reenacted it in 1942 at the start of World War II. Currently, about 70 countries around the world observe DST. The farther they are from the equator, the more likely nations are to change their clocks. China, India and Japan are the only major industrialized nations that don’t spring forward and fall back. In the United States, there are some holdouts as well: Arizona, Puerto Rico, Hawaii, U.S. Virgin Islands and American Samoa do not observe DST.
And, last but not least, the reason I started The 60 Blog: my birthday. November 9 is the anniversary of the first issue of Rolling Stone published in 1967, and the Cold War came to an end when the Berlin Wall came down in 1989. One of my favorite memories is the Northeast Blackout of 1965, when several U.S. states and parts of Canada were hit by a series of blackouts lasting up to 13 hours. I remember doing my homework at the kitchen table with candles sitting in a frying pan, thinking the entire east coast was helping me celebrate my ninth birthday.
As I celebrate this milestone, I also send birthday wishes to several rappers who also celebrate their day on the 9th: Hodgy Beats, Scarface, and Eyedea. I wonder if those are made-up names.