Sunday, March 19, 2017

How Things Have Changed

     Rita R. Robison on The Survive and Thrive Boomer Guide reports that she has been caught up in the holidays. Holidays? What holidays?

     You mean you don't celebrate national Pi Day? It takes place on March 14 -- after the numerical representation of pie, the ratio of a circle's circumference to its diameter, which is 3.1415926535...

     First celebrated in San Francisco in 1988, it was officially named a national holiday in 2009 by an act of Congress. Robison points out that while there are many ways to mark Pi Day, including eating a piece of pie, the day is not to be confused with National Pie Day which takes place on January 23. So I wonder: If the day is celebrated on 3/14, does the moment of celebration, the equivalent of ringing in the New Year, take place at 1:59 a.m.?

     When we were kids, there was no such thing as National Pi Day. In my family we did celebrate March 15, the Ides of March, the day Caesar was assassinated in 44 BC. But then my dad studied Latin when he was in high school, which meant that all of us kids studied Latin when we got to high school, despite our protestations that Latin is a dead language and nobody speaks it anymore.

     We also, of course, celebrated St. Patrick's Day, since my mother was Irish. Rita Robison, who also has ancestors who hailed from Ireland, gives us some fun tidbits about the Irish in Facts and Figures for St. Patrick's Day. For example, there are 32.7 million Americans who claim Irish ancestry, or more than seven times the entire 4.6 million population of Ireland. The Irish also have a significant impact on our economy as we import some $39 billion worth of goods every year from the Emerald Isle.

     Meanwhile, I cannot let the moment pass without mentioning that March 20, is the first day of spring. The sun will pass directly over the Equator on Monday morning, marking the vernal equinox for the Northern Hemisphere -- and giving us a sign that better days will come!

     But Meryl Baer has something different in mind. She's been doing a lot of traveling lately, and so when a late winter storm blew in to her hometown, she used it as an excuse to enjoy the day at home. In The Wear and When of Pajamas she address the changing fashions in America today and contemplates the problem of proper at-home attire. Curled up on the sofa, wrapped on a blanket, sipping tea and watching old movies, she finally asks the crucial question: What time in the afternoon can I toss away my sweats and change into pajamas?

     On a more serious note, Laura Lee Carter finds that reading James Baldwin, now as an adult as opposed to when we were kids, speaks to us under our present circumstances in the U. S. If you don't remember Baldwin, take a look at a few Great Quotes from James Baldwin that strike Carter as particularly relevant today. They dovetail nicely into some other thoughts she has in When Did I Lose Contact with My Culture? about, well ... the changing role of women, the changing character of the news, and the changing rhetoric of our politicians. 

     Carol Cassera goes on to more personal issues. She reminds us that our parents looked forward to retirement with expectation and longing, but many of us Boomers find it a time to follow a particular calling. She is now starting her own business. A friend who's been watching her prepare asked her why she couldn't just be a "happy retired person." And so she and others respond in Retired, or Not Really, that the idea of retirement has changed in the last generation or two, and it now involves more of a sense of purpose, a desire to contribute, a need to stay active and relevant.

     But that doesn't mean we have to complicate our lives. Kathy Gottberg at SmartLiving 365 has been traveling, and while she's away she asked another blogger to write a post for her (a good way to simplify your blogging life!). This week Nora Hall, who writes about relationships and retirement and is the author of Survive Your Husband's Retirement, offers her perspective on Rightsizing Your Brain Clutter. She offers some advice on how to focus our minds for happiness -- which may be particularly relevant for those of us who have a spouse walking around the house.

     Anyway, to one and all:  Habere bonum diem et bonam fortunam!


10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the posting and, especially, for the links to other blogs. Good reading!

Retirement surely has changed. Women, in general, never retire completely - only from paid work. My only great-grandfather who was alive when I was born, worked well into his 80s. Neither grandfather lived to retirement age, dying in their 50s. Dad and Mom retired when he hit 65 and Mom was thrilled that they had 10 years together before Dad died. I, at age 79 (just months shy of the age at which both Mom & Dad died) have already been retired for 13 years; Hunky Husband, for 23.5. We've kept busy volunteering - at times having volunteered 12-hour day/7-day weeks of work (I spent three 12-hour days earlier this month!)
Cop Car

Jono said...

Don't forget the Ides of March holiday for Shakespeare celebrations. If all of those of us who were eligible to retire actually could we would fix any perceived unemployment problem. Thereby saving the world. Sort of.

DJan said...

You also forgot St. Urdo's Day, March 16. I had to use the Latin translator to see what you said at the end. Thanks and the same to you! :-)

Stephen Hayes said...

I also took Latin in School. Do you know where Caesar was stabbed? Right in the rotunda! That joke made our Latin teacher howl. Go figure....

retirementreflections said...

Tomorrow (March 20) is also 'International Earth Day'.
Thank you for sharing these great links!

Tom Sightings said...

St Urdo's Day ... I had to look that one up. (But then, I'm not Finnish.) As for International Earth Day ... we should all honor that one. I know. Next year on International Earth Day, let's all resolve to get rid of our SUVs!

Still the Lucky Few said...

And a Good Day to you all too!

Anonymous said...

One holiday runs into the other, the weatherman this morning showed the days until easter, mothers day and memorial day, fourth of july and labor day..what a bummer..No one celebrates much here unless it is complaining about the massive rain, ice and cold weather here since we moved here in 1978 it has rained and snowed the most since they started keeping records, one cannot even go out and see the sun whenever it will make its appearance oh my goodness sakes alive~

joared said...

Ah, Pi, liked math but only put to memory 3.1416 -- no calculators in those days -- all manual. Now we celebrate and easily compute numbers with no end. There's been a conspiracy, I think, to create a holiday for every day in the year. Don't have to be a Boomer to work into and after retirement. I sorta stopped only a couple years ago -- but -- can't bring myself to give up continuing to meet requirements for my state license and national certification. After all, I might want to go back to work.

troutbirder said...

Ok. I'll own up to it. Latin is a dead language, as dead as it can be, first it killed the Romans and now it's killing me. Actually my wife taught me that line from her Catholic high school days...:)