Happy Deana Appreciation Day !!!!
Well, I hope everyone had a nice Christmas, Holidays, Winter Solstice, or whatever term that doesn't cause you offense, distress or indigestion.
After all the ridiculous banter over what to call this time of year, it has come to my attention that some of the lesser-known days of celebration have still managed to get overlooked. This is why, as my "ambiguous day of winter celebration" gift to you, I am offering "Deana's Guide to Obscure Holidays," also known as "Just What the Heck is Boxing Day?"
(Special thanks to my new favorite web site, www.wikipedia.com.)
Casimir Pulaski Day. If you live in Illinois, you get to celebrate this on the first Monday of every March. Casimir Pulaski was a Revolutionary War cavalry officer. I don't know why Illinois thinks he was so special, but they've been having official celebrations in his honor since 1978.
Sweetest Day. This is celebrated primarily in the Midwestern U.S., including Illinois. (Why does Illinois get to have all the fun? I mean, they already have Casimir Pulaski Day. And Oprah.) It began in 1922 when a guy who worked at a candy store thought it would be nice to give small gifts to people who had fallen on hard times. In more recent years, big-name jewelry stores have tried to capitalize on Sweetest Day by attempting to turn it into another Valentine's Day. I'm not falling for it. But if my husband wants to, that's OK with me.
Boxing Day. This day is noted on most U.S. calendars, but nobody here knows what it is. It can be traced to Britain, where its origins are found in giving gifts to those in the lower classes on the day after Christmas. Sounds like a way to keep the lines of the class system nice and defined. So have yourself a condescending little Christmas!
Garbage Collector Day Off: If you're like me and everybody else in my neighborhood, you didn't know about this holiday until Monday, after you had dragged nine bags of Christmas garbage out to the curb and watched it sit there all day. Well, that's OK. Those guys work hard and deserve the day after Christmas off. Just please come soon.
Festivus: This is my favorite little-known day of celebration. Originally an obscure European holiday, Festivus came to national attention through a Seinfeld episode. According to Seinfeld character Frank Costanza, you celebrate Festivus on Dec. 23 by putting up a Festivus pole, conducting an "Airing of Grievances" (each participant tells family members how they have disappointed him or her during that year), and performing assorted demonstrations of strength. The celebration officially ends when the head of the family has been wrestled and pinned to the ground.
I know some families who have been participating in these activities for generations. Now their dysfunction has a name. Merry Festivus!
Until I learned about Festivus, I was unaware that you could just invent your own holiday. So I'm inventing mine. It's called "Deana Appreciation Day." For one whole day, my 6-year-old is not allowed to ask me where her shoes are, and my husband must listen to how much I spent at the grocery store without his mouth dropping open in shock.
Oh, and it's today. Happy Deana Appreciation Day!