Friday, November 28, 2008

Nov 28: Buy Nothing Day

Great video to watch on "Buy Nothing Day" aka "Black Friday".

We call it consumerism, but seriously do we really "consume" all the stuff we get. We hoard it and "warehouse" it after a couple of days of use. And then we go out and buy some more...

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You Have Enough, You Have Enough, You Have Enough

No, but really. You have enough. Yesterday I read an article on Gawker about a mom featured in the Times. She won’t have enough after buying her daughter a pile of toys to buy herself “this year’s designer jeans.” Gawker expressed my dismay succinctly:

“Really not the sort of thing to pump you up to stimulate our wretchedly dysfunctional economy this Black Friday by buying a bunch of useless junk with money you didn’t save from sacrifices that don’t hurt on credit cards you shouldn’t have. So, really: Good call,

Well, all except the doom part. I think there’s something we can do about it. How about we all get a better grip on how much we do have.

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Sunday, November 23, 2008

Nov 23: 勤労感謝の日, Kinrō kansha no hi (Japan)

Labor Thanksgiving Day
Cover of Multicultural Calendar

November 2008

Kinro Kansha No Hi
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Labour Thanksgiving Day (勤労感謝の日, Kinrō kansha no hi?) is a national holiday in Japan. It takes place annually on November 23. The law establishing the holiday cites it as an occasion for commemorating labour and production and giving one another thanks.

Events are held throughout Japan, one such being the Nagano Labour Festival. The event encourages thinking about the environment, peace and human rights.

It is not unusual for early grade elementary students to create drawings for the holiday and give them as gifts to local kobans, or police stations.

Labor Thanksgiving Day is the modern name for an ancient rice harvest festival known as Niiname-sai (新嘗祭, Niiname-sai?), believed to have been held as long ago as November of 678. Traditionally, it celebrated the year's hard work; during the Niiname-sai ceremony, the Emperor would dedicate the year's harvest to kami (spirits), and taste the rice for the first time.
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Saturday, November 22, 2008

Nov 22: John F. Kennedy assassinated in 1963

45th anniversary of the slaying of US President, John F. Kennedy (JFK), in Dallas, Texas.

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November 22

November 22 is the 326th day of the year (327th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 39 days remaining until the end of the year.

  • 1963 - In Dallas, Texas, US President John F. Kennedy is killed and Texas Governor John B. Connally is seriously wounded by an assassin, identified as Lee Harvey Oswald, who was later captured and charged with the murder of police officer J. D. Tippit. That same day, US Vice-President Lyndon B. Johnson is sworn in as the 36th President of the United States.
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    Friday, November 21, 2008

    Nov 21: World Television Day (UN)

    On December 17, 1996, UN General Assembly proclaimed November 21 as World Television Day to commemorate the date on which the first World Television Forum was held earlier that year. The UN invited all member states to observe the day by encouraging global exchanges of television programs focusing, among other things, on issues such as peace, security, economic and social development and cultural change enhancements.
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    World Television Day

    The United Nations’ (UN) World Television Day is annually observed in many places around the world on November 21. The day recognizes that television plays a major role in presenting different issue that affect people.
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    Thursday, November 20, 2008

    Nov 20: Universal Children's Day (UN)

    Another significant annual event brought to you by STE's Multicultural / Diversity Calendar.

    Eric "CalendarWallah" Snyder
    Multicultural Calendar

    November 2008


    Universal Children’s Day
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    UNICEF - Universal Children's Day
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    Universal Children's Day takes place on November 20 annually. First proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in 1954, it was established to encourage all countries to institute a day, firstly to promote mutual exchange and understanding among children and secondly to initiate action to benefit and promote the welfare of the world's children. It was also chosen as the day to celebrate childhood.

    November 20 is also the anniversary of the day when the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child in 1959. The Convention on the Rights of the Child was then signed on the same day in 1989, which has since been ratified by 191 states.

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    Monday, November 17, 2008

    What is a "Red Letter Day"?

    Another interesting bit of trivia from Eric "CalendarWallah" Snyder
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    Red letter day

    A red letter day (sometimes hyphenated as red-letter day or called scarlet day in academia) is any day of special significance.

    The term originates from Medieval church calendars. Illuminated manuscripts often marked initial capitals and highlighted words in red ink, known as rubrics. The First Council of Nicaea in 325 decreed the saint's days, feasts and other holy days, which came to be printed on church calendars in red. The term came into wider usage with the appearance in 1549 of the first Book of Common Prayer in which the calendar showed special holy days in red ink.

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    Nov 17: Gordon Lightfoot - 70 today

    Canadian legend / folk singer was born today.
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    on November 17, 1938 in Orillia, Ontario, Canada
    Gordon Lightfoot was born
    In concert, April, 2000

    Gordon Lightfoot - The Man And His Music

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    Sunday, November 16, 2008

    Nov 16: Louis Riel Day (Canada)

    Louis Riel was hanged for treason on 16 November 1885.
    Multicultural Calendar

    November 2008

    Louis Riel Day
    He was the famous Metis leader who in 1885 led a rebellion and lost against the Canadian authorities because he feared more Metis land would be taken away by the settlers. Today his name is a symbol for Native independence.
    Louis Riel Day
    Aboriginal/Native Canadian
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    Louis Riel

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    Does the Full Moon Really Make People Crazy?

    "So if you're feeling a little mischievous tonight, it might be the full moon. Or it might just be the fact that you read some sensationalistic articles about how the full moon affects people's behavior."
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    Does the Full Moon Really Make People Crazy?

    Tonight is the full moon, and according to several scientific studies that means you're far more likely to be the victim of a crime or creamed in an accident. I'd always assumed it was an urban legend that the full moon coincided with a rise in human weirdness. But some scientists believe there is factual evidence (see chart) that human behavior takes a swerve for the worse during these werewolfish days

    Celeb psychiatrist Glenn Wilson suggested people's behavior might change at the full moon, but not due to any sort of "human tidal wave" shenanigans:

    There is good reason to believe that people's personalities do change around the time of the full moon, not because of any astronomical force, but because it creates the optimum lighting conditions for feeling carefree and mischievous
    But psychologist Ivan Kelly
    says the whole idea is bunk
    nothing but shoddy research as well as a tendency to confuse correlation and causation
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    Thursday, November 13, 2008

    Nov 15: Sadie Hawkins Day

    Another "red letter day" from the Old Farmer's Almanac.

    Eric "Calendarwallah" Snyder
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    The Old Farmer's Almanac

    November 15, 2008

    Sadie Hawkins Day

    Image:Sadie Hawkins Day.jpg

    Not a typical holiday, Sadie Hawkins Day is the invention of Al Capp, creator of the Li'l Abner comic strip. Capp conceived of a day in Dogpatch, U.S.A., when all the unmarried ladies could pursue (literally) their men. If caught, the hapless bachelors were soon trudging down the aisle. This fictional world so captured people's imaginations that Sadie Hawkins Day passed into the realm of modern folklore. The first Sadie Hawkins Day took place in November 1938. Today, it's usually celebrated on the second Saturday in November to accommodate all the "girls-ask-boys" school dances and other events.

    Red Letter Days

    days of special significance in each month -- holidays,
    astronomical happenings, anniversaries of historic events, and
    days with memorable folklore attached. Information is drawn from
    the library of The Old Farmer's Almanac.
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    Wednesday, November 12, 2008

    Nov 13, 2008: Full Beaver Moon (Old Farmer's Almanac)

    Another fun event from Eric "CalendarWallah" Snyder...
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    The Old Farmer's Almanac

    November 13, 2008

    Full Beaver Moon

    For both the colonists and the Algonquin tribes, this was the time to set beaver traps before the swamps froze, to ensure a supply of warm winter furs. This full Moon was also called the Frost Moon.

    Red Letter Days

    The term "red-letter day" originates with the tradition of marking
    holy days in a church calendar in red. We use the term here to
    designate days of special significance in each month -- holidays,
    astronomical happenings, anniversaries of historic events, and
    days with memorable folklore attached. Information is drawn from
    the library of The Old Farmer's Almanac.

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    Outsourcing, scheduling, holidays...

    Diversity Means Business... Business Means Diversity
    In the modern global 2008 world of business, government, education, and enterprise of any kind, outsourcing and International co-working, collaboration, and cooperation are essential, emerging every-day realities.  

    Companies outsource work to other countries in distant parts of the world.  They market internationally.  Other countries have different cultures, and they celebrate different events, and have very different statutory holiday schedules.

    One of the implications seldom properly considered is scheduling.  The planning/scheduling impacts of holidays can be huge.  

    Just as a simple example, consider an American company that outsources work to organizations in China and Pakistan, and has a substantial amount of sales in Canada.  All of the organizations and stakeholders involved in this global trading arrangement, if they need to work together and collaborate, need to think of the impact of the calendar on scheduling.  Phone calls, meetings... any events that involve co-working in real time need to be carefully planned with due consideration for holidays.

    To illustrate the impact, we've created a holiday "mashup" for the countries involved in our hypothetical global trading arrangement - USA, Canada, Pakistan, China - 

    Although no country in our example has more than 10 statutory holidays, there are 31 different schedule alert days in 2008... days on which one or more of the employee populations have statutory time off... holidays.  Collaborative, coordinated events involving all the partners aren't possible on 31 different days of 2008.  And to complicate things further, the events don't always happen on the same dates every year.  The countries use different calendars - some solar; some lunar.  2009 will not be the same as 2008.  It's complicated...

    Tuesday, November 11, 2008

    November 11: The Charlie Brown story.. wonderful war story

    This true story, untold for years and years, has become somewhat of a legend in recent years since pilot Lt. Charles Brown actually met Franz Stigler, the German pilot who, instead of shooting down Charlie Brown, led his crippled bomber back to England.

    Another wonderful calendar-driven story from Eric "CalendarWallah" Snyder. I love to use the Multicultural calendar to bring the richness and realities of history to life.
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    The Charlie Brown story is a wonderful story of compassion between enemies during wartime.

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    Nov 11, 2008: The Poppy Project

    Someone has started an initiative on Facebook to have everyone use the poppy as their profile picture out of respect for November 11th, 2008 -- Remembrance Day/Veterans Day.

    I thought it would be fitting to replace my profile picture with this poppy image on this day of remembrance.
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    Public Profile
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