September 24, 2010 · 5:41 am
Allow me to be the first to wish you a happy National Punctuation Day. The seventh annual National Punctuation Day, to be precise.
NPD is the brainchild of one Jeff Rubin, an author and expert in shameless self promotion. He even managed to get the holiday recognized as official in Chase’s Calendar of Events. If you go there, you will also see that October is Self Promotion Month.
Given all the activities offered on the holiday’s website, you could be a faithful observer of this occasion for weeks.
For example, you could:
- give yourself a refresher on the correct uses of 13 types of punctuation;
- enter a Punctuation Haiku contest;
- make Norma Martinez-Rubin (a.k.a. Mrs. Punctuation)’s famous Semicolon Meat Loaf, the official meatloaf of National Punctuation Day, or make one in the punctuation shape of your choice;
- sit in on Punctuation Playtime at a participating school, and enjoy punctuation relay tag, a Wynken, Blynken and Nod punctuation contest or a punctuation rap performed by facilitators and students;
- purchase T-shirts, latte mugs, greeting cards and punctuation posters from the official NPD website; and
- as the Rubin suggests, take a leisurely stroll, paying close attention to store signs with incorrectly punctuated words. Stop in those stores to correct the owners. If the owners are not there, leave notes.
Or you could observe the holiday by reading some the blog posts I’ve written on punctuation.
Forgive me; I’m just gearing up for Self Promotion Month.
Filed under All Things Wordish, Holidays, Marketing/Advertising/PR
Tagged as Chase's Calendar of Events, holiday, Jeff Rubin, National Punctuation Day, Norma Martinez-Rubin, punctuation, punctuation haiku contest, Punctuation Playtime, Self Promotion Month, semicolon meatloaf
July 3, 2010 · 7:46 am
As we approach our country’s 234th birthday, it’s appropriate to reflect on the significance of Independence Day.
My educational frame of reference for American independence centers chiefly around a film we were shown in grade school. I have been trying to remember the name so I can dig up a copy. The film was black and white and grainy, but it painted a pretty vivid picture of the events leading up to the formation of the United States as an independent nation. So when this holiday rolls around, that film rolls in my head.
The Fourth of July is also my younger brother’s birthday. When he was little he used to sing, “A real live Matthew of my Uncle Sam, born on the Fourth of July,” while watching fireworks at the neighborhood celebration he thought was being thrown in his honor.
Living in the nation’s capital, the Fourth used to mean hearing the Beach Boys playing on the National Mall, and a long, crowded Metro ride home. Sometimes it’s a crab feast or a pool party or a visit to the National Archives. Fireworks? Don’t hate me, but I could take ’em or leave ’em.
Even though our nation might at times seem like it’s going somewhere in one big hand-basket, with oil spills and wars and political infighting over the freedoms we hold dear, my holiday wish is that for one day we Americans can cool off with a Good Humor Bomb Pop, sing Kumbaya and appreciate how good we have it.
As I trust the Founding Fathers would have intended, I’ll be at the Jersey shore.
Word Nymph doesn’t post on Sundays, but she wishes you a Happy Independence Day.
Filed under Family and Friends, Food, Holidays, Movies, Television and Radio, Music, Travel
Tagged as American Revolution, Beach Boys, fireworks, Fourth of July, Good Humor Bomb Pop, holiday, Independence Day, Jersey Shore, Kumbaya, National Archives, National Mall, Paul Revere, Yankee Doodle Dandy
May 31, 2010 · 9:49 am
I logged in to the Internet this morning and saw Comcast’s Memorial Day Quiz on my home page. I took it, in part because I wanted to write about Memorial Day today and I thought it might provide some ideas. I scored 58 out of 150. I am the first to admit I am not great at history. But in my defense, I was distracted by all the typos in the questions. I then took it again. Different questions, fewer typos, but still…Star Spanged Banner, Arlington Cemetary, rememberance. This time I scored 148.
Memorial Day means different things to different people. For my husband and me, it used to be all about Dewey Beach.
I commemorated the holiday yesterday. In church I joined in prayers for those who have given their lives in service to our country, and their families. I thought of the American teenagers who have died in war these last nine years, and prayed for their mothers. I joined in singing Eternal Father, Strong to Save, also known as the United States Navy Hymn, which asks protection of those serving on land and sea and in the air.
Then I went home and had a barbeque.
Today I will partake in another important Memorial Day ritual: taking out my white pants and shoes. I know this news will elicit snickers from family members in Arizona who have been wearing white since March. Anyone who knows me is aware I am an etiquette purist. Pathologically compliant. For me, living on the edge means wearing white on the Sunday before Memorial Day, but never past Labor Day. I won’t even wear spectators outside the Memorial-to-Labor Day window.
I believe etiquette makes our lives easier by providing a clear framework for our behavior and lifting responsibility for making decisions about such matters.
In the movie Serial Mom, which stars Kathleen Turner (and my Aunt Patsy), a Martha Stewart-like homemaker brutally murders those who commit simple etiquette violations, such as smacking gum, stealing a parking space and not rewinding a video rental. In her final act, she slaughters Patty Hearst for wearing white shoes after Labor Day.
See, I just wouldn’t want to risk the consequences.
Happy Memorial Day.
Filed under All Things Wordish, Beauty and Fashion, Family and Friends, Holidays, Movies, Television and Radio
Tagged as barbeque, Comcast Memorial Day Quiz, Dewey Beach, Eternal Father Strong to Save, etiquette, holiday, John Waters, Kathleen Turner, Memorial Day, Patty Hearst, Serial Mom, United States Navy Hymn, white pants, white shoes