Sunday, May 12, 2013

It's not easy being green... except on May 13

Monday, May 13, you see, is Frog Jumping Day (the Usual Suspects are in rare unanimous accord on this point) and Leprechaun Day (sure now, we shouldn't be limiting the Little People to St. Patrick's Day only, should we?)

The Usual Suspects are also in rare accord about the fact that there seems to be no reason why Frog Jumping Day is observed on May 13 each year. Most of those Usual Suspects willing to speculate on the matter assume the day was inspired by Mark Twain's short story, "The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County," but -- they agree again -- the chosen day does not link to any specific day in Twain's life.

We thought we might be able to answer this one, guessing that the Calaveras County Fair and Jumping Frog Jubilee, the event which inspired Twain's story, and which is still held annually, might be scheduled for May 13. But if you look at the link you'll see that, this year at least, the Calaveras County Fair runs from May 16 to 19. Close, sure. But is it close enough? (The actual frog jump at the Calaveras County Fair will be held this year on May 19.) Perhaps some reader has soe clarifying information that he or she could share with the rest of us?

Monday will also be National Apple Pie Day.

The trademark "Velcro" was registered on May 13, 1958. According to Wikipedia, Velcro did not become widely used until after NASA decided to use it -- but NASA did not invent Velcro.

Pope John Paul II was shot on May 13, 1981.

Heavyweight boxer Joe Louis, the Brown Bomber, was born on May 13, 1914. Stephen Colbert was born exactly 50 years later, on May 13, 1964.

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