On April 2015

Note: Opening Night for Meals: The Musical is Wednesday, 9:30 pm (Eastern US) with songs with any of the following in the title: Meal(s), Breakfast, Lunch, Lunchtime, Brunch, Dinner, Dinnertime, Supper, Snack, Snacktime, or Food(s).

April, spring in the Northern hemisphere, but autumn in the Southern hemisphere, therefore

April and October are seasonal equivalents.

April, the second rainiest month of the year (after July)

April, starting the same day of the week as July in all years, and January in leap years

April, ending on the same day of the week as December every year

April, called Aprilis by the Romans

April, fittingly for the blooming action of the season, its traditional etymology from the verb aperireto open

April, the second of the earliest Roman calendar

April, sacred to Venus, the Roman goddess

April, the fourth month of the current calendar year, but it originally had 29 days as Julius Caesar added its 30th day

April, called Oster-monath or Eostur-monath by the Anglo-Saxons

April, huhtikuu in Finnish, which refers to burning the vegetation to clear farmland

April, mail traven in Slovene, meaning when plants start growing

April Symbols

  • Zodiac Signs: Aries (The Ram) Apr. 19, then Taurus (The Bull) Apr. 20 – May 20
  • Birthstone: Diamond, White Sapphire / Meaning: Innocence
  • Birth Flower: The Daisy or the Sweet Pea symbolizes curiosity, playfulness and tenaciousness

April, whose moon is called Slash-and-Burn Moon, Egg Moon, Grass Moon, Hare Moon

April, with a Full Moon on April 4th 12:05 UTC, and a New Moon on April 18th 18:56 UTC

April in movie titles include April in Paris (1953), The April Fools (1969), April Fool’s Day (1986, 2008), April Morning (1987), Enchanted April (1992), Pieces of April (2003), Sometimes in April (2005), April Love, April Showers (2011), April Snow (2012), April Morning (2012)

Songs titles (other than the videos) include Sometimes It Snows in April (Prince), April (Deep Purple), A Rose in April (Ann Gray-Raven-Seanachie), April Is In My Mistress’ Face (John Rutter), April Rain (Al Jolson), I’ll Remember April (Charlie Parker), January April and Me (Roy Clark), Little April Shower (Disney, from Bambi), Pieces Of April (Three Dog Night), and The April Fools (Dionne Warwick)

April, the first name of many pornstars – but not everyone named April is a pornstar

April, the time of a series of 1834 insurrections in France against the government of Louis Philippe that led to violent oppression – thus the name, The Days of April

April, a series of Mackey Chandler books

April promotes adopting a greyhound, ASPCA, astronomy, car care, Confederate history, defeating diabetes, fair housing, financial literacy, child nutrition, home improvement, informed women, Twit Awards, African-American women’s fitness, decorating, pest management, safe digging, physical wellness, preventing Lyme Disease in dogs, women’s eye health & safety, community service, and tackling your clutter

April aims to increase awareness in alcohol, autism, cancer control, bereaved spouses, Cesareans, distracted driving, emotional overreacting, genocide & human rights, habitats, Irritable Bowels Syndrome, DNA-Genomics-Stem Cell Education, facial protection, heartworms, multiple births, health of minorities, Parkinson’s, sarcoidosis, STDs, youth sports safety, pet first aid, Rosacea, testicular cancer, workplace conflict, anxiety, and stress

April celebrates amateur radio, diversity, couple appreciation, fresh Florida tomatoes, frogs, Grange, holy humor, guitars, gardens, knuckles down, occupational therapy, pets, poetry, rebuilding, school library media, soy foods, zoos & aquariums, welding, and Thai heritage

April embraces Atlanta food & wine, Arab-American heritage, child abuse prevention, community spirit, customer loyalty, jazz appreciation, libraries, young children, military children, card & letter writing, grilled cheese sandwiches, humor, kites, landscape architecture, pecans, straw hats, woodworking, math education, recycling, smiles, and pets are wonderful

Do you have any special occasions in April? Which songs did you enjoy?

On January 2015

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January, named after Janus, the God of beginnings and transitions

January wasn’t always the first month because March was in the old Roman calendar

January Symbols

  • Flowers: Carnation, Snowdrop
  • Birthstone: Garnet
  • Zodiac: Capricorn (Dec. 22 – Jan. 19) and Aquarius (January 20th into February)

January has also been referred to as Ianuarius (Romans), Wulf-monath (Saxons wolf month), Wintarmanoth (Charlemagne’s winter/cold month), Tammikuu (Finnish, month of the oak moon), Leden (Czech ice month), Prosinec (Slovene)

The names for January’s moon are Old Moon, Moon after Yule, and Storm Moon

Depending on your location, the moon will be full on January 4th/5th, and the new moon will be January 20th

January starts on the same day of the week as October in common years, and starts on the same day of the week as April and July in leap years

January ends on the same day of the week as February and October in a common year, and ends on the same day of the week as July in a leap year

On average, January is the coldest month of the year for most of the Northern Hemisphere, but the warmest month of the year for most of the Southern Hemisphere … thus January and July are seasonal equivalents

Movie titles include movies Captain January (1936), The January Man (1989), and The Two Faces of January (2014)

January promotes teen driving awareness, unchaining a dog, bath safety, books, getting organized, wealth mentality, hobbies, learning to ski & snowboard, mail order gardening, letter writing, thank you, radon action, mentoring, slavery & human trafficking prevention, fat-free living, staying healthy, slow cooking, and getting over it

January celebrates walking a dog, worldwide rising star, creativity, quality of life, polka music, self-love, OK to be different, blended families, printing, high-tech, stamp collectors, crime stoppers, and yours mine & ours

January is the month to enjoy oatmeal, prunes, candy, gourmet coffee, hot tea, soup, wheat bread, swapping soup, bread machine making, brain teasers, and making bread in a bread machine

January is the time to embrace training your dog, adopting a rescued bird, celebrating life, dried prune digestion, balancing life, changing your stars, skating, being on purpose, finding your way, shaping up, reaching your potential, voluntarily donating blood, and watching bald eagles

January is the month to increase awareness about stalking, the thyroid gland, personal trainers, birth defects, cervical health, financial wellness, Braille literacy, child-centered divorce, glaucoma, birth defect prevention, poverty, eye health, clinical trials, autism, and self-help groups

Have a great January. Which songs did you enjoy?

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 214

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On Politics
Cincinnati is in the final six for hosting the 2016 Republican convention. Given Ohio’s swing-state status and the fact that no Republican has never won the White House without winning Ohio, odds are good that the GOP will reward either my city or Cleveland.

Here’s one thing I find in common with the four Congressional leaders (Boehner, Pelosi, McConnell, and Reid). Whenever they have a new conference, I change the channel – which is what I also do with White House spokesperson Jay Carney’s daily briefings.

At the time of the passing the law, I told a friend (and reader here) that the abortion clause in the Affordable Care Act should have been something Democrats gave up. Now, we await word from the US Supreme Court regarding the Hobby Lobby challenge.

This week the US Supreme Court ruled (McCutcheon v. FEC) that money is a form of free speech regarding campaign contributions. I can accept this under two conditions: 1) No tax-exempt status for Political Action Groups, and 2) Identification/disclosure of donors and amounts – thus increasing transparency.

On This Week’s Headlines from The Onion
Parents reminisce to children about dating algorithm that brought them together
Lowly mortal opens portal to Hell
Mom leaves sweet little note for sixth grader in ADD prescription bottle
Levi’s factory implicated in cruel treatment of denim cows
Study finds majority of non-shark-related fears completely unjustified
New law requires Richard Gere to personally inform residents when he moves into a new neighborhood

Bonus Onions

Interesting Reads
Reforming political polarization from Brookings Institute (Link to abstract with download)
Columnist Ruth Marcus on a budget item
A view about dealing with Russia
Map animation of Europe between the two World Wars
Learning and pseudoscience

On Potpourri
This past Wednesday was Autism Awareness Day; and April is Autism Awareness Month. Here’s an article about the brains of autistic children.

I wonder this question about Vladimir Putin’s move regarding Crimea and Ukraine: Is he a good chess player or are his actions out of political necessity?

As the National Labor Relations Board ruled in favor of Northwestern University athletes being able to unionize, I wonder if colleges should offer “Sports” as a major.

Erin Andrews, the new Dancing with the Stars co-host, does much better than previous host Brooke Burke-Charvet.

My wife and I celebrated our 37th anniversary this week with a wonderful dinner at Cooper’s Hawk Winery and Restaurant.

I moved a few bloggers to my sidebar, and several onto the More Bloggers page. From the sidebar, checkout Claudine, Cindy, Dreamwalker, Hudson, List, Mind Margins, Pauline, and Trent. I hope to move a few more very soon.

Here are your weekend celebrations

  • (Weekend) Mule Days
  • (Fri) Walk to Work Day, Stray Animals Day, Vitamin C Day, Rat Day, Blame Someone Else Day, Chocolate Milk Powder Day, Cordon Bleu Day, Square Root Day
  • (Sat) Deep Dish Pizza Day, Pillow Fight Day, Tangible Karma Day, Every Day is Tag Day, Rubber Eraser Day, Dandelion Day, Caramel Day, and Raisin & Spice Day
  • (Sun) New Beers Eve, Hostess Twinkie Day, Tartan Day, Teflon Day, Caramel Popcorn Day, Free Tomato Day, Sorry Charlie Day

Here’s a classic gold song from the past to send you into the weekend – Long Cool Woman in a Black Dress (The Hollies). Have a safe weekend and in the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.