image courtesy of oskay @flickr
As we all know, October is most famous for Halloween – the day and night at the end of the month historically known as a time for children (and some adults) to dress up in a fun costume and door-knock through their neighbourhood, asking the dwellers within to provide them with sweet, sweet candy. Failing to provide such sugary treats could potentially result in some kind of nasty trick being played upon the miserly confectionery Scrooge(s). Such tricks would generally be delivered in the form of TP or eggs, however one could never really be certain of what to expect, so it is always wiser to give the children what they want.
At least that’s what I learned from the movies and television.
Personally, I’ve only ever had two Halloween experiences. The first was when I was quite young and involved a viewing of the Disney cartoon version of “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” and staying up until midnight sharing ghost stories. The second occurred on a dark and stormy night, many years after my first dabbling with Hallow’s Eve and was a fun affair in which I disguised myself as Jason Vorhees and marauded the night away at a fancy dress party.
Halloween has recently become quite popular here in Australia, to the extent that Halloween decorations and all sorts of fancy dress accessories stand for sale right next to the Christmas decorations this time of year. I just can’t help thinking that there are some little guys that are being overlooked this month. Like less graceful or charismatic siblings, these holidays and celebrations deserve just as much love as the popular ones and I’ve got a soft spot for the underdogs.
While everyone’s busy doting on Halloween, there are a few other special days and celebrations that quietly do their thing during October. They require no carved fruits, no spiderweb-covered anything and you don’t need to hold your torch under your chin. I’d like to take the opportunity to introduce you to a few of these silent achievers now.
Change A Light Day: Go ahead, release your inner handyman! Change A Light Day is an opportunity for us all to either learn for the first time or refresh our existing knowledg of all things Bayonet, Edison Screw and push fit. This day is best celebrated by changing a blown bulb for a working one, but if you’re all about shaking up the system you can change a working globe for a broken one.
Phileas Fogg Wager Day: Follow in the footsteps of one of the greatest adventurers ever and engage in a grandiose wager that will pit you against the fiercest opposition for the highest stakes! Do you dare stand up for yourself as your peers laugh in the face of your passion?! Could you use £20,000? Well then, draw your courage and wager those pompous, ignorant buffoons and you will be guaranteed success! Particularly since, like Phileas Fogg, you possess the smarts, the heart and the companions to help you on your way! Or you could just read “Around the World in 80 Days”…
Ten-Four Day: October 4th has been set aside to pay tribute to the truckers who run the long-hauls and spend lonely days and nights moving goods from one place to another. Spend the day responding to every question and request with “That’s a big ten-four!” or some variation and know that somewhere, a big rig runner is tipping his baseball cap to you.
CAPS LOCK DAY: NO I’M NOT SHOUTING; I’M JUST RAISING AWARENESS OF CAPS LOCK DAY! If you’re like so many people who actually know how to capitalise properly, you’ll know that these guys don’t usually get a lot of screen time. If you visit any kind of internet forum, news site or really anywhere that someone can post a response to something however, you’ll know that sometimes capitalisation goes a little over the top. Caps Lock Day is hoped to be a day of mutual tolerance, where overcapitalisation can be overlooked – in the hopes that it will only happen once a year.
There are so many other days that should be mentioned – National Chocolates Day (on the 28th!), Reptile Awareness Day and Cranky Co-Worker’s Day (I think we all know that this one gets celebrated a little too often!) are just some of the many days that October grants us. There are also month-long celebrations as well and because October is recognised as Cyber Secrity Awareness Month (amongts other things) I’ll leave you with this warning from Australia’s Minister for Broadband, Communication and the Digital Economy. We must all be wary of the spams and scams coming through the portal!*
* I am ashamed to admit that Stephen Conroy is STILL in office.