August 30th Frankenstein Day

Today would be Mary W. Shelley’s birthday, August 30th, 1797. THE Mary Shelley who wrote Frankenstein in 1818. Some say it was all in her imagination but others say that there is some real life situations involved. (which is perhaps scarier than the story itself.) You think about the monster walking around the towns and villages in the story but then you realize it was walking around inside her head long before that. It makes you realize that in society, most of us are walking around with things we struggle with inside us. Some are able to get them out by writing about them, while others fight them daily in other ways. Still, it makes for a good story!

How to celebrate – Read Shelley’s “Frankenstein” (it’s a lot different than the films). Identify the monsters in your head. Read “Frank Einstein”, a play our blog writer wrote, available at Playscripts.com.

October 25th Frankenstein Day

With Halloween coming this seems like a logical day to celebrate. It was created by Ron MacCloskey to celebrate Mary Wollenstonecraft Shelly who wrote Frankenstein in 1818 when she was 21. He has terrorized the world ever since! There have been rumors that Frankenstein might have been based on some real activities taking place during Shelly’s lifetime. Either that, or wow, what an imagination! (Particularly for that era) Mary had an interesting life and continued to write though most of her other efforts are not as well recognized. Frankenstein has changed over the years, now it’s more about the monster than about creating him, as it was in the original novel. Considering the real monsters we have in the world today, Frankenstein seems harmless, though he still scares us. Since 1818, we have learned how to harvest human organs for use in other people than originally intended for. It sort of shows that maybe Frankenstein wasn’t as far fetched as they would have thought back in the early 1800’s.

How to celebrate – Read the original, “Frankenstein”. Try to find Mary Shelly’s other works. Get ready for Halloween!

August 30th Frankenstein Day

Wow, there are a ton of Frankenstein days during the year. Seems like most of them come around Halloween, I can’t imagine why? They each have their own reason for being created but I believe today has one of the top reasons. Today was the day Mary Wollenstone Shelley, the author and creator of Frankenstein was born. August 30th, 1797. Did you have any idea that Frankenstein was created back in 1818? Of course the monster we celebrate today is quite different from the one she wrote about. She still gets the credit though. And well she should, if she had not created the monster we would never have had it in our lives. It does sort of make you wonder though, what monsters were running around in her head in 1818?

How to celebrate – Throw Mary a belated birthday party. Read Shelley’s original “Frankenstein”. Dress up like Frankenstein.

January 16th Appreciate A Dragon Day

Jan. 16th Appreciate A Dragon Day

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Today was created by Donita K. Paul who believed we did not celebrate our dragons enough. Never mind that they never really existed. Knights fought them to save maidens, magical ones appeared in little boys dreams and then Puff, they were gone!

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It’s sort of funny that so many dragons live in our lore but not in our real lives. They truly are under-appreciated.

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How to celebrate – Read a book about dragons. Fight that make-believe dragon in your dreams. Invent your own dragon.

October 31st Halloween

Another year has passed and it’s that day of the year again where we all go out and get candy from our neighbors. Well, maybe not all of us… and maybe not all neighbors. In fact, the chance of getting visited by little monsters at your front door is getting to be less and less of a tradition anymore. Now we meet at malls and in parking lots.

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The idea of Halloween in the past was to ward off evil. When I was a kid Halloween was one of the most fun events on the calender, the chance to get candy, dress up in silly outfits and walk the streets of a safe neighborhood where friendly neighbors were thrilled to greet you.

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Many people celebrate the Fall Harvest instead. Those are the places where you eat pumpkins rather than pumpkins eat you!

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I miss the old Halloween. The one where it was fun to get a little scared and do a little scaring. Where candy wasn’t laced with something and front doors were always opened in good will and caring. And nobody gave out toothbrushes as a treat.

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How to celebrate – Decorate your yard for Halloween. Find the perfect costume for your personality. Go to a haunted house.

August 30th National Frankenstein Day

It’s hard to imagine the world without Frankenstein. For those of us born after 1818, the day Frankenstein was published, he has been there for us, creeping around every corner, hiding in the woods or knocking on our door for some candy.

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Written by Mary Wollenstone Shelly this character has become a classic. You could say there’s a little of all of us in Frankenstein. An arm here, a leg there a brain or two from anywhere, he is the ultimate man-made monster brought to life by Doctor Frankenstein in his laboratory before the invention of electricity, cars or M & M’s.

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Of course he has been pitted against nearly every other European monster… the Wolfman, Dracula, Charlie Chaplin. Well, at least he had more lines in his films than Charlie Chaplin. He normally won proving brawn stands for something but he loses in the end to man. Of course he is a man, many men, so I guess you could say he loses to himself.

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One of my all time favorite movies is Young Frankenstein, a spoof about the monster and his creator. I still break up when Dr. Frankenstein finds out that Igor got him the brain of a guy named Abby Normal for his monster.

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We celebrate today because it is Mary Shelley’s birthday, August 30th, though she was born in 1797. You have to wonder what nightmare she had before writing this one down. However, it became a classic she will be remembered forever for.

How to celebrate – Read the original Frankenstein. Watch Young Frankenstein. Set up a Frankenstein movie marathon. (You might want to set aside several days)

October 31st Halloween

Well, if you haven’t heard by now, today is Halloween. It is a part of a three day celebration in the Christian world where we remember the dead, saints, and martyrs. The Western Civilization actually prefers to call it All Hallow’s Day, though it also goes by Allhalloween, All Hallow’s Eve, and All Saint’s Eve. It seems to have originated from a pagan Celtic harvest festival called Samhain, which Christians renamed Halloween.

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Of course it has the trick-or-treat tradition along with costumes, turning pumpkins into Jack-o-Lanterns, gathering around bonfires, bobbing for apples, pulling pranks, visiting haunted attractions, telling of scary stories and watching horror movies. The religious world celebrates with the lighting of candles on grave sites to honor the departed.

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Of course over the years we don’t do the bobbing for apples anymore because of the possibility of passing germs. The original association was a type of celebration for the apple harvesting season. And you’d better be careful with the bonfires, make sure you get a permit or it may be your last Halloween as a free man.

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We may have gotten a little carried away with the costumes and decorations and certainly gone way overboard on the haunted houses, but it all should be in good fun. In many ways, the real world is scarier than the world created during Halloween.

Another tradition not widely celebrated is the abstaining from eating meat on Halloween. It is know as Vigil Day where one only eats fruits and vegetables, and probably candy… though a lot of candies have meat byproducts in them.

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How to celebrate – Go out trick-or-treating. Create a fun, and safe, atmosphere for kids to enjoy themselves (and adults as well). Throw a Halloween party observing as many of the holiday traditions as you can.

May 3rd Paranormal Day

The term Paranormal (Meaning: Para- above or beyond and Normal – Ah, well, normal) has only been around since 1920.  Paranormal is the phenomena in pop culture, folklore and other non-scientific bodies of knowledge, whose existence within these contexts to lie beyond normal experience or scientific explanation.  This includes; ghosts, extraterrestrial life, UFO’s, psychic abilities,extrasensory perception and Cryptids (Bigfoot, Loch Ness Monster, werewolves, etc.).  Anthropologist George Frazer, in his book “The Golden Bough” explains the soul is a creature in an animated body.

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Come on, all that mumbo-jumbo trying to describe what we all know, it’s something that scares us! Most of us enjoy the scare, the adrenalin rush we get when we think we see, or hear, something that shouldn’t be there.  At first we want to run, to get away from what we can’t explain, but eventually we go back and find that normally there is some logical explanation.  But sometimes there isn’t.  Sometimes we find ourselves caught between what we can understand and what we can’t.

Are there ghosts, monsters, UFO’s in the world?  Maybe, it all depends on what you believe in.  Perhaps they are nothing but our imagination, coming alive in the right setting at the right time.  There are dozens of “Ghost” shows on television and they never seem to actually find a ghost.  They explain sounds that could be ghosts but they could also just be a house settling or the wind blowing through a crack in the wall that makes it sound like someone is speaking.  They may also be faking it because as we all saw when Geraldo finally got Capone’s vault open and there was nothing there, it was really, really boring.

I have gone out ghost hunting on numerous occasions and can honestly say I have never found evidence of anything “out of this world”.  I have had some experiences, however, when I was not expecting them that I can’t explain.  I have gone to a door and reached for the door knob only to back away when I saw dozens of hands floating unattached to anybody on the other side of the door. (It had a window in the door)  I did not hang around long enough to try and figure out some logical explanation.  In mere seconds I was a mile away from the location having broken the land speed record for humans.

I have searched the sky for UFO’s but never seen one.  And yet I had an Uncle in the service that received Federal reports that he could not talk about concerning them.  I have had powerful feelings that I was being watched when inside a house that was reportedly haunted.  I have had those feelings that I have been somewhere before when to my knowledge I knew I never had.

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And I have had to rescue two women who were running on an old battlefield from a man they identified as a soldier from another era. I have seen photographs of people who should not have been in he picture at all.

Are these paranormal experiences?  I honestly don’t know, but it’s sort of fun to think they are.  I suspect if I knew for sure I wouldn’t care for it too much either way.

How to celebrate: Watch a scary movie, preferably with a friend.  Read a scary book.  Start your own “Tales From The Crypt” television show, it’s pretty easy… you don;t have to prove anything just suggest.