If you are so inclined, the National Council on Fireworks Safety offers these common-sense tips for handling fireworks:
Assuming you keep all of the eyes, fingers and toes that you start July with, what else should you consider celebrating throughout the coming month?
- Use fireworks outdoors only.
- Obey local laws. If fireworks are not legal where you live, do not use them.
- Always have water handy. (A hose or bucket).
- Only use fireworks as intended. Don't try to alter them or combine them.
- Never relight a "dud" firework. Wait 20 minutes and then soak it in a bucket of water.
- Use common sense. Spectators should keep a safe distance from the shooter and the shooter should wear safety glasses.
- Alcohol and fireworks do not mix. Have a "designated shooter."
- Only persons over the age of 12 should be allowed to handle sparklers of any type.
- Do not ever use homemade fireworks of illegal explosives: They can kill you! Report illegal explosives to the fire or police department in your community.
Our crack research staff strongly urges you to consider celebrating National Cell Phone Courtesy Month. The link is to etiquette expert Jacqueline Whitmore's blog; she started the observance in 2002. On her blog, Ms. Whitmore provides these Top Ten cell phone courtesy tips:
We can only hope these catch on.
- Be all there. When you’re in a meeting, performance, courtroom or other busy area, let calls go to voicemail to avoid a disruption. In some instances, it’s best to put your phone on silent mode.
- Keep it private. Be aware of your surroundings and avoid discussing private or confidential information in public. You never know who may be in hearing range.
- Keep your cool. Don’t display anger during a public call. Conversations that are likely to be emotional should be held where they will not embarrass or intrude on others.
- Learn to vibe. Use your wireless phone’s silent or vibration settings in public places such as business meetings, religious services, schools, restaurants, theaters or sporting events so that you don’t disrupt your surroundings.
- Avoid “cell yell.” Remember to use your regular conversational tone when speaking on your wireless phone. People tend to speak more loudly than normal and often don’t recognize how distracting they can be to others.
- Follow the rules. Some places, such as some restaurants or courtrooms, restrict or prohibit the use of mobile phones, so adhere to posted signs and instructions. Some jurisdictions may also restrict mobile phone use in public places.
- Excuse yourself. If you’re expecting a call that can’t be postponed, alert your companions ahead of time and excuse yourself when the call comes in; the people you’re with should take precedence over calls you want to make or receive.
- Send a text message when you want to send a quick message. But remember not to text while having a conversation with another person. It’s important to give others, especially clients and customers, your full, undivided attention.
- Watch and listen discreetly. Multimedia applications such as streaming video and music are great ways to stay informed and access the latest entertainment. Use earphones to avoid distracting others in public areas.
- Don’t text and drive. Don’t put your life or those of others at risk. Pull over if you absolutely must send a message or wait until you reach your destination.
Not enough for you? How about Wheelchair Beautification Month? Or how about Adopt a Rescued Rabbit Month? (And, before you know it, Try to Give Away a Few Dozen Rabbits Month....)
Readers of this blog should never have to worry about being bored, but July is Anti-Boredom Month. In case you were interested.
July is also Nectarine and Garlic Month, although that sounds like a combination that should only be served to persons who fail to observe basic cell phone courtesy.
Have a Glorious Fourth, and be sure to consult the Blog of Days each and every day in July for more suggestions on what to observe and celebrate.