~★~♥~♥~★~ El Morno! ♥~★~★~♥ ~
March 20, 2012
★~ Today’s Quote: Imagine what our real neighborhoods would be like, if each of us offered as a matter of course, just one kind word to another person… One kind word has a wonderful way of turning into many.” Fred Rogers
★~ The vernal equinox has sprung:
Put a little spring in your step! Today the Earth’s axis is aligned with the center of the Sun! The word equinox comes from Latin aequus, meaning equal, level, or calm; nox means night, or darkness. The equinox, in spring or fall, is a time when the day and night are as close to equal as they ever are, and when the hours of night are exactly equal for people living equidistant from the equator, either north or south. Note that in the Southern Hemisphere today is the beginning of autumn. The Sun rises due east and sets due west everywhere on Earth (except near poles), and the daylight length (interval between sunrise and sunset) is virtually the same everywhere today: 12 hours, 8 minutes.
Ostara, the pagan name for spring, is a time of new fire. The light and dark are in perfect balance, but the light is growing and the Sun is about to burst forth with new energy. It is a season of fertility and growth. Mabon is celebrated in the southern hemisphere.
Be sure to check out Google’s spring doodle—it sure is purty!
★~ American Meat Out Day:
If you have ever thought about becoming a vegetarian, today is a good day to kick the meat habit and explore a wholesome diet of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
★~ Ravioli Day:
Take one tasty food—pasta—and fill it with another tasty food—cheese, or meat, or mushrooms—and you’ve got the wondrous little yum pillows we call ravioli, wonton, or kreplach. Stuffed pasta is thought to date back to medieval times and contained cheese, nuts, and spices. “In European/Christian cultures they were often served with cheese during Lent and on other meat-abstaining days, The earliest mention of ravioli appears in the writings of Francesco di Marco, a merchant of Prato in the 14th century.
★~ Bockbier Day:
Centuries ago, German monks adopted this hearty dark brew as “liquid bread” to provide them with carbohydrates and calories as they fasted during Lent. Some believe the name bock came from the shortening of einbeck and thus beck to bock. Others believe it is more of a pagan or old-world influence that the beer was only to be brewed during the sign of the Capricorn goat, and that bock means goat in German. In Europe, pictures of knights fighting in wars or goats ready to ram would portray the strength of the beer. Before Prohibition in America, many of the breweries turned out colorful poster art showing beer-drinking goats doing everything from bellying up to the bar to floating in a hot air balloon. Basically, this beer was a symbol of better times to come and moving away from winter. Sounds like a good way to toast the start of spring to me!!
★~ Today in History:
♥~ 1967 – Fashion model, Twiggy, arrived in the United States for a one-week stay. She quickly became the most sought-after subject of photographers due to her terrifically skinny-yet-wholesome good looks and the shortest dresses ever seen (to that time).
♥~ 1980 – After 303 weeks on the Billboard album chart, Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon became the longest-charting rock album of all time. It stayed on the chart for over eight more years, finally dropping off after 741 weeks.
♥~ 1985 – CBS-TV presented The Romance of Betty Boop. The special starred Desiree Goyette as the ‘Boop-Boop-Be-Doop’ cartoon cutie from the Max Fleisher one-reel films in the 1930s. There were 112 Betty Boop shorts produced. Only two other cartoon characters have surpassed Betty in animation fame. They are: Felix the Cat and (of course) Mickey Mouse. Most people thought Betty Boop was fashioned after the actress, Clara Bow, the ‘it’ girl.
♥~ 1996 – A 21-year-old Muppet fan claiming to have a bomb took over a radio station in Wanganui, New Zealand, and demanded that “Rainbow Connection” by Kermit the Frog be played non-stop for 12 hours. Police evacuated the area, decided the bomb was a fake, stormed the station, and arrested the listener. No one was hurt.
♥~ Emily Collins: It is so perfect that we are celebrating Emily’s birthday on the first day of Spring! Emily brings sunshine with her where ever she goes! She is my food partner of the day, and our resident WOW mom. I knew her back in the days when she was only a chick and can certainly attest to the fact that she grew up to be a beautiful swan, becoming more amazing with each year that passes. Happy Birthday Ms. Em. We are all raising our Bockbier steins to you!
♥~ 1957 – Spike Lee director: She’s Gotta Have It, Do the Right Thing, Mo’ Better Blues, Jungle Fever, Malcolm X, Crooklyn, Clockers
♥~ 1950 – William Hurt actor: Broadcast News, The Accidental Tourist, Altered States, The Big Chill, Trial by Jury, Children of a Lesser God
♥~ 1958 – Holly Hunter Academy Award-winning actress: The Piano ; Broadcast News, The Firm, Raising Arizona
★~ Did You Know:
♥~ When the tulip flower first arrived in Europe, the English tried serving them with oil and vinegar and the Germans boiled and sugared the bulbs? Tulip bulbs were more valuable than gold in Holland in the 1600s.
♥~ In the Victorian language of flowers the Hyacinth flower symbolizes sport or play, and the blue Hyacinth signifies sincerity.
♥~ Daffodils were brought to Britain by the Romans who thought that the sap from Daffodils had healing powers. In reality, the sap contains crystals that can irritate the skin.
♥~ The Iris was named after the Greek Goddess who is considered the messenger Love and uses the rainbow to travel.
♥~ In Europe, lilies were used as a remedy against a wide range of diseases and ailments.
♥~ The largest flower in the world is the titan arums, which produce flowers 10 feet high and 3 feet wide. The flowers smell of decaying flesh and are also known as corpse flowers.
♥~ Almost 60 percent of fresh-cut flowers grown in the U.S. come from California.
♥~ The lotus was considered a sacred flower by ancient Egyptians and was used in burial rituals. This flower blooms in rivers and damp wetlands, but may lie dormant for years during times of drought, only to rise again with the return of water. Egyptians viewed it as a symbol of resurrection and eternal life.
♥~ Scientists discovered the world’s oldest flower in 2002, in northeast China. The flower, named Archaefructus sinensis bloomed around 125 million years ago and resembles a water lily.
Today is also Snowman Burning Day. Isn’t that just gruesome? All I can think of is Frosty. Nope. Odd refuses to celebrate the destruction of anyone or anything. I love snowmen! There are so many positive ways to say goodbye to winter and welcome spring. For instance, you could try and stand an egg on end. In pre-revolutionary China, it was customary to stand eggs on their end on the first day of spring. To do so would guarantee good luck for the entire year. Stood on the first day of spring, the egg becomes the symbol of a new season, the birth of new life. Why not give it a try?
Odd’s makeover celebrates 365 days of El Morno posts! I started writing El Morno in March of 2011. I’m not sure what possessed me to commit to writing a blog post every single day and night 😀 I am simply not the type of person who commits to doing something every single day (except maybe brushing my teeth). Thanks for cheering me on with your comments. Mike has been here with me for every one of those 365 El Mornos, and truthfully, there are days I might have missed if I did not know he was waiting for me to post El Morno at 5:45 a.m. I don’t have any plans to stop posting El Morno—although I might take a day off every now and then—and hope you will continue visiting whenever you are in my neighborhood. The porch light is always on and Odd Loves Company!