The holidays are upon us and they are legion. We know about the biggies, but there are many lesser-known holidays—some a wee bit whacky. As a gift to you I share some of them. No thanks necessary.
November 23, Thanksgiving Day, is, for most Mississippians, also Egg Bowl Day. It’s French Toast Day, too, so raise a glass to the country that gave us bread soaked in eggs!
The 24th is Black Friday, when everyone who shops at Walmart gets a black eye. It’s also Square Dance Day, so while you’re getting your black eye you can do-si-do and ho-down, too! Oh. It’s “hoe down,” not “ho down”? Never mind. (Apologies to the late Gilda Radner.)
December 1 is World Aids Awareness Day. It’s also Eat a Red Apple Day. I say, “Good pairing.”
The second is National Fritters Day, so let’s all fritter some time away.
Advent begins on the third. Ironically it’s also National Roof Over Your Head Day. Why ironically? Because Joseph and Mary couldn’t get a room at the inn the night Jesus was born. Duh!
The fourth is Wear Brown Shoes Day. Why?
Bathtub Party Day and Repeal Day—the day the 21st Amendment ended Prohibition—are on the fifth. BPD and RD on the fifth? You can’t make that stuff up!
In Europe the sixth is Bartender Appreciation Day. It’s also Put on Your Own Shoes Day, which, after BPD and RD on the fifth, could prove challenging.
December 7 is Pearl Harbor Day. Am I the only one who finds it strange that it’s also International Civil Aviation Day?
Brownie Day is the eighth. It’s also Take It in the Ear Day. I ain’t touchin’ that!
The 10th is Human Rights Day. Right. Is there a Human Lefts Day? I seriously doubt it.
For the Manicotti Mafia, the 11th is National Noodle Ring Day, followed by National Ding-a-Ling Day on the 12th, when Chuck Berry’s cover of the Dave Bartholomew song, “My Ding-a-Ling,” became his only #1 Billboard Hot 100 hit. Maybe Chuck should have played with his ding-a-ling sooner. Just sayin’.
November 14 is my son’s birthday. It’s International Monkey Day, too. And when, pray tell, is International Monkee Day? It’s also Roast Chestnuts Day, which is, I believe, how Mel Torme died.
December 16 is National Chocolate Covered Anything Day, proving once and for all that there is a god. It’s followed by National Maple Syrup Day on the 17th, suggesting that god might be from Vermont.
The 21st is Humbug Day and Look on the Bright Side Day: Ebenezer Scrooge meets Eric Idle.
Channukuh starts on the 22nd and lasts for eight days, during which time observers argue over whether it should be spelled “Chanukah” or “Hanukkah.” Oy vey! It’s also Winter Solstice, the shortest day of the year, thank Jehovah!
Festivus (for the rest of us) is December 23, the day to eat soup and watch re-runs of Seinfeld, be master of your domain, and complain about shrinkage.
The 24th is National Chocolate Day and National Egg Nog Day. Combine the two for another good pairing.
Of course, the 25th is Christmas, or Unboxing Day. It’s followed by Boxing Day on the 26th, when you put stuff back in the box and return it to the store.
National Fruitcake Day is the 27th and is celebrated by seeing who can chuck the fruitcake the farthest, even if the fruitcake is your Uncle George.
Appropriately enough, December 30 is both Bacon Day and National Bicarbonate of Soda Day. Yet another good pairing.
And December 31 is New Year’s Eve, Make Up Your Mind Day, and Unlucky Day. Just call it WTF Day and get it over with!
On a serious note, as a mental health professional, let me give some of you some relief. It’s truly unfortunate that not every family is like a Norman Rockwell painting, but they aren’t. If yours is, or if they’re even close, fall on your knees and give thanks. Unless you’re in prison or in the military, there’s no law that says you have to spend holidays with anyone you don’t want to. So if your family is toxic, if they make the Holy Days hellish, make other plans. Either skip the holidays with them or limit your time with them. Despite all the angst you might experience, in the end you’ll probably be glad you did it. It’s legal and it’s not a sin—and I’ve got the credentials to back that up, too. Really.
And that’s the view from The Balcony.
Randy Weeks is currently on vacation. This column originally appeared in The Local Voice #340 on November 14, 2019.