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April 11, 2014

Today we celebrate:

National Cheese Fondue Day – Originating in Switzerland sometime in the 1700's, it endures today because, as everyone knows, cheese makes everything taste better.

Eight Track Tape Day – I know I'm dating myself, but I remember having these wonderful musical devices from the 1960's and 70's when I was a child. My parents probably still have our 8-track collection and our 8-track tape player, which may or may not still work. My favorite one, which I listened to over and over was the Magic of Abba. Sadly, my children have never even seen one of these, let alone held one in their hands.

Barbershop Quartet Day – Barbershop Quartets have been around for a very long time. They were kind of dying out and you didn't see or hear of them as much so on this day in 1938, 26 people gathered in Tulsa, Oklahoma and formed the Society for the Preservation and Encouragement of Barbershop Quartet Singing in America.  Now you can’t pass a street corner without being serenaded by a handsome quartet of singers.  Well, at least that’s how it was in my dream last night.

National Submarine Day – On this day in 1900, the United States Navy commissioned its’ first modern submarine for a price of $150,000. It started out being called Submarine Torpedo Boat #1 and was eventually named USS Holland (SS-1).  Holland refers to the name of the inventor, not the name of a country.

International “Louie Louie” Day – On this day in 1935, Richard Berry was born. I’m sure a lot of other people were born that day too, but Mr. Berry was special because he later composed “Louie Louie”, a song that is considered by some to be the best party song of all time.  A song that no one knows the lyrics to, except for the “Louie Louie” part.

National Pet Day – This day was created by Colleen Paige (You may recognize her name from yesterday's National Farm Animals Day. She orchestrated a bunch of animal related celebration days.). This is a day that will hopefully inspire you to help out the over-crowded, under-staffed and under-funded animal shelters all over the country. Thousands of animals are killed in shelters every year because no one wants them and there's not enough money or room to keep them all at the shelters for the rest of their natural lives.  Save a pet today and adopt one from a shelter so it can have a loving, forever family.

National Day Of Silence – Sponsored by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network, this is a day to take a vow of silence of some kind to take a stand and make a statement against bullying, specifically against bullying the GLBT community. Bullying anyone for any reason is just wrong. You don't have to agree with the choices other people make, or the lifestyles they live. You can even flat out disagree with them, but no one has the right to bully, or persecute anyone for those choices or lifestyles. On this day, if you are a student you are encouraged to inform your teachers ahead of time about your vow of silence but you must know that during classroom instruction time, if a teacher requires you to vocally participate in any way, you must do so. Some teachers, if they know ahead of time, might support your stand, but not all will and so you need to be prepared to suspend your vow of silence during classroom time.

World Parkinson's Disease Day – Named after Dr. James Parkinson, it is estimated that 6.3 million people suffer with Parkinson's Disease in this world. Today is a day to wear a red tulip to raise awareness of the disease and show support for all those suffering with it and their families.  This day is celebrated all over the world with special events.

To celebrate today, be silent all day and wear a red tulip to show your support of Parkinson’s sufferers when you go out to hand your local Barbershop Quartet a note asking them to sing “Louie Louie” while you have cheese fondue with your lunch.  Then walk your pet to the shore to look for submarines.  Look carefully, they are hard to spot.  Finally, dig around your boxes of “stuff” and see if you can find your old eight track tapes to show your kids.

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