Friday, April 26, 2013

Shaky microminiholidayettes abound on April 27

You probably haven't heard of any of these, but here goes....

Saturday, April 27 will be Matanzas Mule Day. It seems that on April 27, 1898, in an early engagement of the Spanish-American War, the U.S. Navy bombarded the Cuban port of Matanzas, on the north shore of the island, some 56 miles east of Havana. Supposedly, the only casualty of the bombardment was a mule... thus Matanzas Mule Day. This is one the Navy vet in your family will probably not want to celebrate.

A number of the Usual Suspects say Saturday will be Morse Code Day, honoring the anniversary of the birth of Samuel Morse (born April 27, 1791), the inventor of the Morse Code. While we are perfectly willing to accept that Morse Code would be better for texting -- far easier on the thumbs -- than trying to accurately strike the little tiny alphanumeric keys on the modern phone, we know of absolutely no one who agrees with us. Does anyone actually use Morse Code these days? We doubt if anyone's neighborhood tap will offer any Morse Code specials Saturday evening.

Usual Suspect offers Eeyore's Birthday as a possibility Saturday -- and Eeyore's Birthday is indeed celebrated, in Austin, Texas. Wikipedia describes the day as a kind of hippie holiday, but it does raise funds for local non-profit groups. And this will be the 50th Anniversary of the event... even if it isn't Eeyore's real birthday.

© 1948 Wide World Photos
Some of the Usual Suspects say that April 27 is Babe Ruth Day. We're skeptical.

There's no question that Baseball Commissioner Happy Chandler declared April 27, 1947 to be Babe Ruth Day. The Bambino (who was already fighting a losing battle with the cancer that would take his life in 1948) appeared at Yankee Stadium that day, and addressed the crowd. But this wasn't even the Babe's last trip to The House That Ruth Built; according to Wikipedia Ruth attended another day in his honor in September 1947 and again, for the final time, on June 13, 1948. That's Nat Fein's Pulitzer Prize winning photograph of that bittersweet moment above. Ruth was so weak by this time, he used his bat as a cane.

If you're looking for baseball-related celebrations Saturday, we can suggest instead that Hall of Famers Rogers Hornsby and Enos Slaughter were both born on April 27 (in 1896 and 1916, respectively).

Usual Suspect Days of the Year advises that Saturday will also be Sense of Smell Day. Well, maybe yes... and maybe no. There is a Wikipedia article that states, "The Sense of Smell Institute is a research and education division of The Fragrance Foundation" and it is this Sense of Smell Institute that sponsors National Sense of Smell Day on the last Saturday each April "at children’s museums and science centers across the United States." But we looked at the footnotes of the Wikipedia article... the alleged links for the Fragrance Foundation and the Sense of Smell Institute take us to this page -- where we can find no verification at all that there are any Sense of Smell Day festivities in the offing this year. So celebrate this if you wish... but it smells fishy to us.

Saturday will also be National Prime Rib Day. Although prime rib is delicious, it's not much to make a holiday over -- but at least this one is apparently non-controversial.

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