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November Celebrations

The month of November is best known for Thanksgiving, but here are some other November celebrations you should know about.

You likely missed National Cook for Your Pets Day on Nov. 1. Fran and I no longer have a pet. So she cooked a meal for me instead. I growled in approval. Fran used to cook for our dog Tuddy. Tuddy passed away on my November birthday a while back. It put a bit of a damper on our celebration. On the bright side, we haven’t seen poop under our dining room table since that day …

Nov. 6 was Zero-Tasking Day. You’ve never heard of it, you say. Pity. Zero-Tasking Day is designed to “encourage everyone to drop what they’re doing and to focus on absolutely nothing.” When I was in school, several of my teachers caught me “celebrating” that day before I even knew it was a holiday. It’s a great concept unless you’re undergoing brain surgery and your surgeon suddenly decides to celebrate Zero-Tasking Day. How did we miss that celebration? City Council celebrates Zero-Tasking Day almost every day. By the way, did you vote for the new members of City Council last week? Who the hell are these people? What do they stand for? Didn’t matter. Most folks dutifully voted for the Democrats (gosh, is there any other party in Philadelphia?). All four got elected. After all, one-party rule in this town has served us well. I josh …

We celebrated National Scrapple Day on Nov. 9 Only we didn’t. Philadelphia is known for its scrapple. But scrapple is by and large unloved in its home town and practically unknown in the rest of the country. I like scrapple, but I’m not allowed to eat it. It’s not so much that scrapple is unhealthy. It is. But so are most hot dogs, which are beloved along with apple pie and mom. But scrapple looks unhealthful. It’s gray. It’s a food that screams terminal illness. My wife refuses to cook scrapple on principle alone. In fact, scrapple is one of only two foods she won’t cook. The other is liver. Maybe she read Portnoy’s Complaint. That’s an inside joke. So much for National Scrapple Day …

It’s not too late for you to celebrate National Button Day, which is on Nov. 16. I think buttons should be obsolete, so I won’t be celebrating National Button Day. I’m in favor of celebrating National Zipper Day instead. I tend to lose buttons. What’s worse than owning a nice cardigan sweater with a button missing. Actually, there is. A nice cardigan sweater with the missing button replaced by a button from your mother’s smock. It tends to spoil the Brooks Brothers look. Your cardigan now screams Good Housekeeping! For some reason, buttons still prevail. If you have buttons on your fly and you’re taking a water pill, you’re in big trouble, if you know what I mean. Buttons remind me of the mystery surrounding chopsticks. Why use them when we have forks? …

Here’s a positive celebration for you — World Hello Day on Nov. 21. World Hello Day is a secular holiday. It’s important to give atheists a positive day because they constantly get depressed when they look skyward. Frankly, I’m tired of hearing atheists saying, “There’s nothing there.” I don’t mean to mislead you. World Hello Day is not reserved for atheists. The celebration is designed to encourage folks to resolve their differences through communication rather than violence. For instance, had the attacker said, “Hello” before he asked for Nancy, maybe he would not have been inclined to hammer Paul Pelosi (I think I heard that on Fox News). I’m once again a contrarian. As the Beatles once sang, “You Say Hello and I Say Good-bye.” I tend to favor good-byes over hellos …

Some of you may note that I’ve omitted All Saints Day and All Souls Day. When I was a kid I thought those days were in celebration of whether a saint made first-team or second-team honors like football players make All-America teams. As an ignorant public schooler, I apologize. I’ve always thought All Souls Day got short shrift from the Church. After all, without those poor souls, there wouldn’t be saints …

There are other days that could be mentioned. Like Will Rogers Day on Nov. 4 and Sadie Hawkins Day on Nov. 5. But these celebrations have faded with time. Will Rogers was once a famous political humorist, but there’s no need for political humorists anymore. Today’s Republican Party has made jokes of themselves without needing humorists to point them out.

As for Sadie Hawkins Day, it was the creation of cartoonist Al Capp in his Li’l Abner comic strip. Sadie Hawkins Day was a day when unmarried women were free to chase after men. If there ever was a celebration that was not politically correct, it was Sadie Hawkins Day. Unmarried women were stigmatized back in the day. That was back when the term “old maid” was used for unmarried women who’d reached a certain age. Today’s unmarried woman is often so by choice. She’s often better educated than her male counterpart. Makes more money. And considers a sex toy a better investment than the available chooch trolling the hook-up sites. Sadie Hawkins is the one being chased. Maybe we should revive the celebration with a different twist. Make it Clem Bupkis Day — a day when loser men get a chance for a date with a real live interesting female who won’t reject them.

Hold the celebration in November.

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