The apparent path of the sun will reach its northernmost point at 16:39 UTC today; this is the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere and the shortest in the Southern. Happy Litha, dear readers, and Blessed Be!
Archive for the ‘Holidays’ Category
Today is May Eve, long recognized as the spring equivalent of Halloween. For the past few years I’ve presented lists of scary things to enjoy on the day; in 2012 it was my list of the scariest short stories, in 2013 my list of the scariest television show episodes, and in 2014 a collection of all sorts of different scary things. In the leadup to Halloween each year, I usually call attention to spooky links and horror-themed columns, and of course a lot of my stories are horror; since Halloween “Left Behind“, “Magna Mater” and “Surprise” all fall into that category. So if you’re unfamiliar with the May Eve traditions, read up on them in my previous columns, and if you’re a fan of horror fiction there are a number of treasures here for your enjoyment. Blessed Be, dear readers, and pleasant dreams!
The apparent path of the sun will cross the celestial equator at 22:45 UTC tonight. Happy Ostara, Dear Readers, and Blessed Be!
The deities who preside over [carnival] are not those associated with Christianity, but rather the ancient pagan gods who, in New Orleans alone out of this whole grim, Puritanical country, have never fully relinquished their rule. – “Mardi Gras 2014”
If you’re a new reader and not from New Orleans, you may not understand why the day is still important to me even though I no longer live there (and in fact, I’ve never been as far from the Crescent City on a Fat Tuesday as I am today). So take a look at my previous columns for the day (the one linked in the epigram plus 2013, 2012 and 2011), and if you want to celebrate in your own small way try indulging yourself in whatever way makes you happiest, at least for one day; that’s exactly what I’ll be doing!
An obligatory “gift” of a certain expected value which must be presented at a certain time in order to retain a woman’s sexual favors is not a love offering, but rather a whore’s fee. – “St. Valentine’s Day”
Regular readers know that I don’t care much for Valentine’s Day, mostly because it’s so nakedly hypocritical but also because, as I explained last year,
…while all the others are inclusive, this one is exclusive. Holidays are times for friends, families and others to gather and celebrate together, but Valentine’s Day festivities (except, perhaps, for polyamorists) are exactly the opposite. Lovers tend to seek every available excuse to be alone together anyway; it hardly seems necessary to set aside a special day for that, especially one on which the show is celebrated above the substance.
In fact, I like the classical Roman Lupercalia much better; dudes running around naked and hitting women with whips seems to me a much more exciting way to celebrate than being given a box of chocolates I can’t eat without worrying about my waistline. Even most Valentine images are annoying or even creepy, which is why I like the little kitten one above so much. SEE HOW CUTE IT IS??? Major, major cute. 7.5 on the Richter scale of cuteness. And therefore one of the few I can stand. Starting next year, I’ll be generating my own images for this occasion, but until then you’ll have to settle for…no, I can’t say it; some puns are just too awful, even for a Valentine.