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April 17 is Blah Blah Blah Day

blah blah blah dayToday is Blah Blah Blah Day, created in 2006 by Ruth and Thomas Roy of Wellcat Holidays and Herbs as a day to listen to the nagging words that usually register as a dial tone in the brains of those of us old enough to remember landlines.

When you translate the blah blah blahs into words, what do they say? “I just read this interesting article about gluten,” or “(Sports team) just beat (sports team),” or “Keira Knightley has really evolved as an actress,” or “But I just took out the garbage the other day,” or “Happy anniversary, what time did you make the reservation for at that fancy new restaurant I told you about that books up weeks in advance?” or the ever-popular, “Are you listening to me? What did I just say?”

While the Roys intended this holiday to be a time to pay attention and follow directions, it seems a bit heartless to raise expectations for the rest of the year. Maybe this is a day to double down on the “no habla blah blah,” crank Iggy Pop’s Blah Blah Blah and leave the earbuds in after it finishes. That way your loved ones will think you just can’t hear them when they’re talking to you. What a selfless, loving gift; they’ll never know how much you care.

Happy Blah Blah Blah Day!

Copyright © 2018 Worldwide Weird Holidays

March 11 is World Plumbing Day

World Plumbing Day

Today is World Plumbing Day, a day of observance established in 2010 by the World Plumbing Council to raise awareness of the vital role plumbers play in our daily lives.

We’re willing to bet that everyone must heed nature’s call. (Call it a hunch.) World Toilet Day celebrates the need for clean water and sanitation. Global Handwashing Day emphasizes proper hygiene. World Plumbing Day recognizes those who install and maintain the facilities so many of us are lucky enough to use.

According to the World Health Organization, 2.3 billion people lack access to adequate sanitation. UNICEF reports that 450,000 children under five die from diarrhea every year. Drought conditions threaten much of the world, including California.

Lead and other contaminants have been poisoning the water supply of Flint, Michigan, since 2014. Three years later, the EPA allocated $100 million for cleanup, a federal judge approved a $97 million settlement, and the state agreed to pay to replace water lines for 18,000 Flint households by 2020.

So the next time you turn on the tap, raise a glass to the plumber who’s always there when you need him to unclog a drain, fix a leak or get the toilet back in business so you can do your business.

Happy World Plumbing Day!

Copyright © 2018 Worldwide Weird Holidays

March 3 is National Cold Cuts Day

Today is National Cold Cuts Day. Some look at a seemingly wacky holiday and say, “Why?” At Worldwide Weird Holidays, we say, “Why not?”

National Cold Cuts Day

The term “cold cuts” refers to any cooked meat that is thinly sliced, often eaten in a sandwich. According to SupermarketGuru, there are three types:

Whole cuts are slices carved directly from chicken, turkey breast, corned beef or other precooked sources.

Formed or “restructured” products are made by combining meat chunks with sticky proteins and/or artificial additives, emulsifying them into a thick slurry. The blend is then forced into a mold or casing and cooked to bind it into its new shape.

Processed meats include cured, smoked and otherwise preserved foods like sausage and hot dogs as well as bologna and liverwurst. Manufacturing steps are similar to those of formed meats, with an important exception. These mixtures may include “by-products” such as lips, stomachs, and hearts.

Note: Any lunch meat appended with the word “loaf”—olive loaf, ham loaf, pickle loaf—might warrant a peek at the list of ingredients. A word to the wise: If it calls itself a loaf but it isn’t bread, proceed with caution.

Want to know more? Watch a five-minute segment devoted to deli meats on Discovery Channel’s “How It’s Made” program. The script sounds suspiciously like advertising, but maybe the narrator just really, really loves lunch meat.

If you’d prefer more comprehensive reportage, prepare to be dazzled by Season 13, Episode 39 of “Modern Marvels,” a 45-minute tour de force titled, simply, Cold Cuts. (It’s currently unavailable on the History Channel but, in case you feel like breaking the law, we’ve tracked down a pirated version on YouTube.)

On a more serious note, we find it alarming that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (which lengthened its name in 1992 but still refers to itself as the CDC) advises pregnant women, people over 65, and those with weakened immune systems to heat cold cuts to 165° F before eating them, due to the possible presence of Listeria, a hard-to-kill bacterium that grows even when refrigerated. Did you know that? We didn’t.

There have been many cases of infection due to seafood, hot dogs, raw unpasteurized milk and cheese, as well as this one caused by lunch meat and detailed in the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) on October 25, 2002:

A multistate outbreak of Listeria monocytogenes infections with 46 culture-confirmed cases, seven deaths, and three stillbirths or miscarriages in eight states has been linked to eating sliceable turkey deli meat. Cases have been reported from Pennsylvania (14 cases), New York (11 in New York City and seven in other locations), New Jersey (five), Delaware (four), Maryland (two), Connecticut (one), Massachusetts (one), and Michigan (one).

Find general CDC information regarding Listeria here. and resources specifically for pregnant women here. No one is saying we can’t enjoy a hoagie but let’s be careful out there. Have a Happy National Cold Cuts Day!

Copyright © 2018 Worldwide Weird Holidays

March 1 is National Pig Day

national pig day

Princess Cali – credit: ctpost

Mary Lynn Rave and her sister Ellen Stanley created National Pig Day in 1972 “to accord the pig its rightful, though generally unrecognized, place as one of man’s most intellectual and domesticated animals.”

Pigs are intelligent, using various oinks, grunts, and squeals to communicate with each other. They excel in tests requiring the location of objects and can use mirrors to do so, a talent they share with chimpanzees.

They are social and learn from each other, cooperating to accomplish tasks such as breaking out of a pen or finding food. A pig can be trained to manipulate a joystick with its snout and play a simple game, meaning it could probably kick our butts at Pong.

Unfortunately, somebody figured out long ago that pigs are delicious. They are the only honorees we know of that have the dubious distinction of being enthusiastically consumed on the holiday that celebrates them.

Should you show your appreciation by forgoing bacon, chops, and ribs today? (We know what Princess Cali would say.) Have a happy National Pig Day!

Copyright © 2018 Worldwide Weird Holidays