Rubber Ducky Day Rolls ‘Round Again


In a recent fit of the most idle of idle curiosity, I did a Google search on important dates for the month of January, and boy howdy, did I learn a lot. I’m guessing most people didn’t know some of what I learned, either, and have been coasting through the first month, year in and year out, not knowing what they should have been observing or celebrating.

For instance, most people are utterly clueless about the fact that this is National Oatmeal Month, which seems well chosen since oatmeal is generally less appealing in August. It is also Hot Tea Month, and National Clean Up Your Computer Month, making this a good time to brew a pot of tea while spending an hour or so deleting all the crud that deposited itself into your computer’s memory bank over the preceding 12 months. And, if energies are a little depleted after the holidays, you might crank ‘em up by observing National Gourmet Coffee month, though you can also celebrate Candy Month with some serious candy consumption to give you that sugar high so helpful in shoveling out the post-Christmas untidiness.

This is also Random Action Month, a time that has been set aside, apparently, to encourage people to do something, or anything at all, just so long as they do it without plan, reason, or desired outcome.

Busy people who don’t have the time to devote a whole month to such observances might choose, instead, to celebrate a designated week in January. “Cuckoo Dancing Week (Jan. 11-18) will suit those who wish to honor the comedy team of Laurel and Hardy by having parties in which celebrants do the little dance Laurel and Hardy used to do in some of their films. The idea is to pay homage to human silliness and, given that there’s so much of it, it seems only right that silliness should have its own week.

January is also Man Watchers Week, Hunt for Happiness Week, Women’s Self Empowerment Week, and Intimate Apparel Market Week. Is there a theme running through all that? Probably not.

The month—and the year—kicks off with one of the most appropriate of all imaginable observances for our species. January 2nd-8th is Someday We’ll Laugh About This Week, so let’s all wish for the opportunity to laugh sooner rather than later at whatever “this” turns out to be.

Anyone with a better idea for how to start the new year might want to see about getting recognition for “I’ve Got a Better Idea” Month. That just might turn out to be an all-inclusive observance. But before you get overly excited about that first great idea that comes to mind, be advised that in addition to the observances mentioned in this piece—all of which are real—there are dozens of other things being honored in January by a day, or a week, or the entire month. On the 7th, for instance, you may have failed to make plans to celebrate “I’m Not Going to Take It Anymore” Day.” In the spirit of friendship and goodwill, however, I will accept late cards offering me good wishes for that occasion.

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  1. Ken Yuhasz says:

    Funny column, Jaime.
    When I moved to Spokane in ’91, I remember that it was Oatmeal week, and a local station had various silly contests built around the oatmeal theme. The one I still laugh about was to come up with a non-food use for the cereal. A caller related her disgust at viewing “plumber’s crack”, and suggested that one might use oatmeal for “Butt-crack
    Spackle” to cure the problem.