Archive for the ‘Holidays’ Category

Lurid Easter food

April 17, 2014

Passed on from several sources (e.g. here), this 1957 ad “for the gayest Easter Eggs”:


When this was posted on Facebook, I wrote there:

Wish the text were easier to read. the photos are vividly fabulous. or fabulously vivid.

Only the largest type is easily legible.

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April 1

April 1, 2014

(Not much language here.)

Once again, it’s April 1, April Fool’s Day. It’s hard enough to know what to believe on the net — there’s so much invention, satire, and the like — but it all gets booted up on this day (and its surrounding days). An old Peanuts, passed on by Billy Green:

Today brought a reminder (from Chris Ambidge) of one of the greatest April Fool’s jokes, the Swiss Spaghetti Harvest BBC broadcast of 1957. Panorama broadcast by Richard Dimbleby here, longer presentation (with complete text) here. It still makes me giggle.

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Maundy Thursday

March 6, 2014

As Holy Week rolls on for Western Christians, today is Maundy Thursday. An assortment of food customs and revelry on Tuesday, Mardi Gras. Penitential ashes yesterday.

[Correction: I've compressed pieces of the liturgical calendar. As a commenter has explained, this is not Maundy Thursday. Yesterday was indeed Ash Wednesday, but now there's the period of Lent until everything else comes along: this year, Maundy Thursday on April 17th, and Easter on April 20th. I've been away from Christian churches for some time.]

And now:

Maundy Thursday (also known as Holy Thursday, Covenant Thursday, Great and Holy Thursday, Sheer Thursday and Thursday of Mysteries) is the Christian feast, or holy day, falling on the Thursday before Easter. It commemorates the Maundy and Last Supper of Jesus Christ with the Apostles as described in the Canonical gospels. It is the fifth day of Holy Week, and is preceded by Holy Wednesday and followed by Good Friday. (Wikipedia link)

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The classic owl joke

March 4, 2014

From several sources, this Sandra Boynton cartoon on whom:

An old joke, offered by people for National Grammar Day, which is today.

Today is also Opal Armstrong Zwicky’s birthday (her tenth, moving her into the edge of tweendom) and, this year, Mardi Gras.

[Note on St. Pancake's Day, from 2012, here.]

Today’s holiday

February 17, 2014

This is an odd American holiday. This Washington Post piece from yesterday — “Why Presidents’ Day is slightly strange” by Valerie Strauss — explains why.

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One more V-Day posting

February 14, 2014

In the Washington Post yesterday, a piece “A whole lot of history behind ‘x’ and ‘o,’ kiss and hug” by Nadine Epstein, which asks the question:

Where do those symbols come from, these ur-emoticons that we sprinkle so liberally across our correspondence?

Lots of sources cited, some more authoritative than others. Included are ADS-Lers Stephen Goranson and Ben Zimmer, plus Deborah Tannen.

The mystery of St. Valentine

February 14, 2014

Today’s Scenes From a Multiverse, on today’s holiday:

 

Given that we know almost nothing about St. Valentine, Jon Rosnberg is free to invent whatever he wants.

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Days

February 2, 2014

Today come two special days that are always on February 2nd: Groundhog Day (a U.S. holiday that most non-Americans find risible) and Candelmas (or the Presentation of Jesus at the Temple). Plus the event of the day in North American sport, the Super Bowl (#48, in East Rutherford NJ), which overwhelms much of American culture.

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Lunar New Year design

January 31, 2014

Not about language.

From among hundreds of designs for the Year of the Horse, this is the one I chose to send to friends today:

Penguin New Year

January 30, 2014

From Victor Steinbok, a link to this photo:

Caption: Penguins wearing a Chinese outfit (L) and a bib written ‘happiness’ in Chinese character (R) walk to celebrate the Lunar New Year at Hakkeijima Sea Paradise amusement park in Yokohama, suburb of Tokyo.

It’s the Year of the Horse, starting on the 31st.


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