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On April 3, Google’s main search page commemorated the 119th anniversary of the first documented ice cream sundae.
Every day commemorates something, but few things are as important as that famous misspelled confection.
However, I’d like to take some time discussing lesser known (and equally important) events.
If you’re from New England, or know some fanatic from New England (but aren’t they all?) then you probably know that April 18 (third Monday in April) is “Patriots’ Day.” Observed in Massachusetts and Maine, it commemorates the Battle of Lexington and Concord.
It also honors Paul Revere’s famous ride, warning the colonists of a British preemptive military strike. Just who did they think they were, attacking and occupying us like that?
Oddly enough, in Massachusetts, the holiday is called Patriots’ Day, whereas in Maine, it’s called Patriot’s Day. You would think that a state as big as Maine would have more than one Patriot.
And seriously — The shot heard ‘round the world? Oh yeah, sure. I doubt that even a Mechem NTW-20mm sniper rifle could be heard more than five miles.
Anyway, with schools and banks shut down for the three day weekend, it has become traditional to host the Boston Marathon on Patriots’ day. Now, don’t confuse all of this with the New England Patriots.
I’m sure the Patriots are patriotic to both country and sport, but they haven’t been given their own national holiday. At least not yet.
Let’s see, where was I? Ah yes, and there’s also Patriot Day, held each year on Sept. 11 to commemorate the attacks in 2001.
Patriot Day is a discretionary day of remembrance, but more and more states are instituting formal recognition of the holiday.
This being the 10-year anniversary of the attack, we will no doubt have to suffer the patriotic prattle of pompous political pundits patronizing the patriotism of patronus policies.
Wait. Nix the patronus part. That’s Harry Potter.
OK, there’s more. In Ahwatukee, Ariz., school children celebrate the annual Patriotic Day, held each year to recognize the contribution of veterans.
And in Waymart, Pa., Patriotism Day is celebrated on June 12 with outdoor parties, lots of music, a nice parade and games for the kiddies.
Patriotism Day in Waymart is of course held to honor Flag Day. This should not be confused with Walmart, for which the word patriotism only has meaning in Mandarin.
And finally, there’s Saint Patriot’s Day, patriotic saint of lost snakes.
Or is that Patrick, the patron? Oh well, that green beer does kind of make it all blur together, doesn’t it?
So what is my point? I mean, where am I going with this?
Tax Day. Yeah, Tax Day, the favorite day for politicians is coming. I’m sure some of you are saying, “Your column is late, buddy. Tax Day is today, April 15.”
Well, not quite. Washington D.C. celebrates “Emancipation Day,” a holiday commemorating the freeing of slaves in the district.
It is a legal holiday on April 16 (the day President Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation) in Washington D.C., and since it falls on a Saturday this year, it’s being observed on April 15. Hence, Tax Day is extended to Monday, April 18.
And how appropriate to find ourselves under attack again, cringing as we hear the cry, “The Fed Coats are coming! The Fed Coats are coming!”
Yes, like the bully in the school yard who shook you upside down for your lunch money, the federal government is all smiles as they prepare to dip their snouts into the public tax trough.
But if you happen to be a nice fat corporation that pimps oil or insurance or pharmaceuticals, and you made billions of dollars in profits, don’t worry.
The politicians who are working hard to eliminate the middle class are working equally hard to eliminate taxes for the rich. As the fat cats say, it’s nice to be king.
In hindsight, maybe Revere had it wrong. The British weren’t all that bad when you consider our options.
Los Alamos columnist