Monday, February 1, 2021

February: Trivia and Brett's Monthly

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Some facts and trivia about February . . .

February was added to the Roman calendar in 713 BC. The length of the month changed over time and, at one time, it had as few as 23 days. When Julius Caesar remade the Roman calendar, the month was assigned 28 days during normal years and 29 days during leap years which occurred every four years.

The month is named for the Latin word februum which means purification. Together with January, it was the last of the months added to the Roman calendar.

The Saxon term for the month, Sol-monath, means "cake month". This is because they offered cakes to the gods during this month.

About 400 years ago, Shakespearean times, this month was known as ‘Feverell’. In Newton’s time, 300 years ago, it had changed to ‘Frbrueer’, which is where February has its latest derivation.

It is the shortest month of the year, the Welsh calling February "y mis bach" which means "little month".

It is the third month of winter in the Northern hemisphere. In the Southern Hemisphere February is a summer month the equivalent of August.

February 2 is Groundhog Day, which even people in Kazahkstan would know the meaning of as a result of the 1993 Bill Murray movie. Love that movie. For those who have been marooned on a desert island or in a coma, it is the day when people look to the groundhog to predict the weather for the next six weeks. Folklore says that if the sun is shining when the groundhog comes out of his burrow, then the groundhog will go back into its burrow and we will have winter for six more weeks. However, if it is cloudy, then spring will come early that year.


"This is pitiful. A thousand people freezing their butts off waiting to worship a rat. What a hype. Groundhog Day used to mean something in this town. They used to pull the hog out, and they used to eat it. You're hypocrites, all of you!"
- Phil Connors, Groundhog Day


By the way:

The origins of Groundhog Day can be traced to German settlers in Pennsylvania who celebrated February 2nd as Candlemas Day. On this day if the sun came out then there would be six more weeks of wintry weather. At some point people began to look to the groundhog to make this prediction. The earliest reference to the groundhog is in an 1841 journal entry. In 1886 the Punxsutawney newspaper declared February 2nd as Groundhog Day and named the local groundhog as Punxsutawney Phil. Since then the day and tradition has spread throughout the United States.

The largest American sporting event of the year, the Super Bowl, is held in February.

Symbols of February:
Birthstone: Amethyst
Flower: Primrose
Zodiac signs: Aquarius and Pisces

Chinese New Year celebrations start on February 12 this year and continue to February 21. A popular greeting on this day is Kung Hei Fat Choy. It means "We hope you get rich" but I think they stole it from the Vulcan “Live Long and Prosper.”


February 1 is National Freedom Day in the US. This day celebrates the signing of the 13th amendment to the United States Constitution by Abraham Lincoln, the amendment outlawing slavery. The purpose of the holiday is to promote harmony and equal opportunity among all citizens of the United States, something much needed in the current political divide.

February 14 is Valentine’s Day, when people show their love and affection for others, openly or anonymously. 


The next day, February 15, is the date of this year’s President’s Day in the US. It takes place on the third Monday in February and, although most commonly called President's Day, the federal holiday is officially called Washington's Birthday. The day honours all of the previous presidents of the United States.

At the risk of pissing off the Trump fans, I love this video:

Not long after, February 17, is Ash Wednesday, a Christian holy day that begins the season of Lent, which is 40 days, not counting Sundays, of fasting and repentance prior to the celebration of Easter. Ash Wednesday occurs 46 days before Easter. Since Easter moves around on the calendar, so does Ash Wednesday. In many places, Christians historically abstained from food for a whole day until the evening, and at sunset. Menstruating women are not allowed to take part in the fasting. No, wait, that’s Ramadan.

February has been Black History Month for over 40 years.

The odds of being born on February 29th are about 1 in 1,461. Those born on a leap day can be called a “leaper” or “leapling.” Leapers celebrate their birthdays on February 28 or March 1.

One for the Chocolate Queen Rosie:
This entire month of February has been dedicated to chocolate! The month is celebrated as the National Chocolate Lovers Month. Rosie, how does that reconcile with Lent? 

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Brett's Monthly:

As usual, Brett B has sent a list of special and bizarre holidays and celebration days for the coming month.  Thanks Brett.

Click on the daily ones to expand . . . 

Daily Bizarre and Unique Calendar Holidays - February, 2021

Month:

  • American Heart Month
  • An Affair to Remember Month
  • Black History Month
  • Canned Food Month
  • Creative Romance Month
  • Great American Pie Month
  • National Bird Feeding Month
  • National Cherry Month
  • National Children’s Dental Health Month
  • National Grapefruit Month
  • National Weddings Month
  • Spunky Old Broads Month

Weekly Celebrations:

3rd Week International Flirting Week

February 2021 Daily Holidays, Special and Wacky Days:

February 1

National Freedom Day

 No Politics Day

Spunky Old Broads Day

February 2

Candlemas 

Ground Hog Day

February 3

Feed the Birds Day  

The Day the Music Died - Buddy Holly, Richie Valens and the Big Bopper died in a plane crash in 1959.

February 4

Create a Vacuum Day

Stuffed Mushroom Day

Thank a Mailman Day

February 5

Bubble Gum Day - first Friday of the month

National Shower with a Friend Day

National Weatherman's Day

February 6

Eat Ice Cream for Breakfast Day - first Saturday of month

International Frozen Yogurt Day

Lame Duck Day

National Chopsticks Day

February 7 

Send a Card to a Friend Day - obviously created by a card company

Superbowl Sunday - Superbowl 55, date varies

Wave All you Fingers at Your Neighbor Day

February 8

Boy Scout Day - celebrates the birthday of scouting

Clean out Your Computer Day - second Monday of Month

Kite Flying Day - in the middle of winter!?!

February 9

National Pizza Day

Toothache Day

February 10

Umbrella Day

February 11

Don't Cry over Spilled Milk Day

Make a Friend Day

National Inventors Day

Paczki Day in Poland - date varies

White T-Shirt Day

February 12

Abraham Lincoln's Birthday

Chinese New Years - date varies

National Lost Penny Day

Plum Pudding Day

February 13

Get a Different Name Day

February 14

Ferris Wheel Day

National Organ Donor Day

Valentine's Day

February 15

Candlemas - on the Julian Calendar

National Gum Drop Day

President's Day - third Monday of month

Singles Awareness Day

Susan B Anthony Day

February 16

Do a Grouch a Favor Day

Mardi Gras  / Fat Tuesday - date varies

February 17

Ash Wednesday - date varies

 Random Acts of Kindness Day

February 18

 National Battery Day

National Drink Wine Day

February 19

National Chocolate Mint Day

February 20

Cherry Pie Day

Hoodie Hoo Day

Love Your Pet Day

February 21

Card Reading Day

February 22

George Washington's Birthday

Be Humble Day

International World Thinking Day

National Margarita Day

Walking the Dog Day

February 23

International Dog Biscuit Appreciation Day

Tennis Day

February 24

National Tortilla Chip Day

World Bartender Day

February 25

Pistol Patent Day

February 26

Carnival Day

National Pistachio Day - it's a nutty day!

 Purim - begins at sundown, date varies

Tell a Fairy Tale Day

February 27

Polar Bear Day

No Brainer Day - this day is for me!

Open That Bottle Night - last Saturday of month

February 28

Floral Design Day

National Chili Day

Public Sleeping Day

National Tooth Fairy Day - and/or August 22

Oscar Night - date varies

 

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