Sunday, April 7, 2013

It's not Buddha's Birthday, except in Japan, but we have alternatives

Some of the Usual Suspects suggest that April 8 is Buddha's Birthday, but Wikipedia explains that the birthday of the Buddha is traditionally celebrated on the 8th day of the 4th month of the Chinese lunar year. In other words, the date varies; in 2013, the Buddha's birthday will be observed on May 17 -- except in Japan. According to Wikipedia, Japan adopted the Gregorian calendar in the Mejii Restoration of 1873, reassigning the Buddha's Birthday to the 8th day of the 4th month of that calendar. So, except in Japan, Monday will not be the Buddha's Birthday.

Aaron's 715th. Photo from Encyclopedia Britannica.
Do not despair, however.

The Blog of Days has alternatives over and above Draw a Picture of a Bird Day or National All is Ours Day (both touted by several of the Usual Suspects for celebration on Monday).

What the heck does "All is Ours" even mean? On Monday, may we take freely from the coffers of Mr. Gates or Mr. Buffett? Can our research staff enter your house and raid your liquor cabinet? Is this a microminiholidayette that can not be appreciated except by the still-in-the-dreaming-stages New Socialist Man? We're not going to promote something we can't even begin to understand.

However, we can understand that Hammerin' Hank Aaron broke Babe Ruth's career home run record on April 8, 1974. (Aaron would retire with 755 homers, a record recently eclipsed by Barry Bonds, though Bonds' achievement is tainted by his apparent use of steroids.) We here at the Blog of Days are not trying to stir up any Aaron-Bonds controversy; rather, we urge celebration of a remarkable achievement as a viable alternative to the mysterious All is Ours Day.

Monday is also the centennial of the adoption of the 17th Amendment of the United States Constitution. That's the amendment that provided for the direct election of U.S. Senators (originally, Senators were chosen by the legislatures of the several States). It was the 17th Amendment, too, that provides for gubernatorial appointments when senatorial vacancies occur. That "bleeping gold" thing that former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich had -- the power to appoint a temporary replacement for Barack Obama on the occasion of Mr. Obama's election to the Presidency -- that "bleeping gold" thing was provided to Mr. Blagojevich by the 17th Amendment.

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