Saturday, December 13, 2014

Still Life With Robin: Save the Dates

Photo by By Mike R Soldwisch via Creative Commons
by Peggy Robin

All week long I have been planning a short piece about today’s date, 12-13-14, the last sequential date of the century. (It has to be the last because there’s no month 13.) However, one look at my morning paper told me that I’d been beaten to the punch by the Washington Post. For a more complete take on the subject than I had planned for today, see

So I turn my attention – call it my slightly eccentric fixation on calendar oddities and weird holidays – on the year ahead.  Here’s what we have in store for us in 2015:

* The palindrome date for 2015 will occur on May 10, 2015 (5-10-2015).
* The double-date will arrive on January 5, ’15 (1 5 15)  
* There will be three Friday-the-Thirteenths (or is that “Fridays the Thirteenth?):  2/13/15; 3/13/15; and 11/13/15
* According to the Chinese calendar, 2015 will be the Year of the Sheep (or Ram, if you think don’t want the year to sound so “sheepish”), starting on February 19.

Perhaps the coolest date of the year will be Pi Day, March 14, 2015—it’s 3.1415.  How do you celebrate Pi Day? You wait until 9:26 a.m. and 53 seconds (that’s taking pi out to nine decimal places -- 3.141592653) and run outside wearing a pie pan on your head and you shout out as many digits of pi as you can remember. Or if you can carry a tune, you can sing the pi song:

What other dates of significance will occur in 2015? In 2014 we had the centennial of the start of World War I, as well as the 100th anniversary of the opening of the Panama Canal. I have looked over the list of noteworthy events of the year 1915,  and I’m afraid it’s not much of a year for grand commemorations. Just a sampling of what you will find on the list:

* On January 28 President Woodrow Wilson unilaterally changed US immigration policy by refusing to block the entry of immigrants who were illiterate.
* On May 27 panic over the spread of an infectious disease was calmed when NY authorities arrested “Typhoid Mary” and sent her into quarantine on an island near Manhattan.
* On June 5 women in Denmark won the right to vote.
* On September 29 technology in personal communications advanced with the placing of the first transatlantic phone call.

None of the above exactly leap out as an earth-shattering change in the way we live….although they do have some odd echoes to things that are still happening 100 years later.


Still Life with Robin is published on the Cleveland ParkListserv and on All Life Is Local on Saturdays.

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