Did you know that September is National Better Breakfast Month?
Or that it's also International Update Your Resume Month, National Square Dance Month and National Blueberry Popsicle Month?
Wait, you didn't know any of these were coming up?
That's good. It'd be pretty silly — and a little scary — if you did.
I got to thinking about proclaimed months when discussing last Tuesday's excellent Health section report on breastfeeding with section editor John Zaktansky.
While the importance and benefits of breastfeeding are undeniable, I asked John why he had picked a seemingly random Tuesday in August to do that story. We usually look for some sort of news hook when we publish such features.
John's reason? The United States Breastfeeding Committee had designated August as National Breastfeeding Month.
Of course it had.
Apparently, pretty much anyone can declare a national day, week or month about just about anything.
Some, including National Breastfeeding Month, are worthwhile ways to bring attention to important issues.
Other are government-declared official months. According to The History Channel, every U.S. president has officially designated the month of February as Black History Month since 1976.
There's also a lengthy list of days, weeks and months annually recognized by presidential proclamation.
National Blueberry Popsicle Month? Not so much.
According to the website nationalcalendarday.com — yes there really is such a website — there are more than 1,500 National Days. And those are just the ones the website coordinators know about.
I clicked on their link to National Blueberry Popsicle Month looking for an explanation.
Under the heading of History, it said: "Our research was unable to determine the origin of National Blueberry Popsicle Month."
Darn. I'm sure that research was exhaustive.
Another place you can click on that website is "Register a National Day."
The website issues a reminder for would-be registrants to "Please note that we do not declare National Days, Weeks or Months for individuals (requires an act of Congress).
So much for National Dennis Lyons Day.
That's fine. The Daily Item is a company, not an individual. I could fill out their form on our behalf.
“Of course, a company or an individual can just declare it, and a lot of people do,” he said, adding, "Really anyone can make up a national day, and there’s no accreditation process or government agency."
Good advice. So, by the power invested in me by absolutely nobody, I am announcing today is National Support Your Local Newspaper Day.
Further, I am announcing that today actually kicks off National Support Your Local Newspaper Week, designated this year for Aug. 25-31.
And, in conclusion, I designate September through next August to be Support Your Local Newspaper Month.
Maybe I'll get some some parchment paper and a seal to make it official.
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