August was originally named Sextilis because it was the sixth month of (what was then) a ten month calendar.
It was renamed in 8BC in honour of Augustus, the first Roman Emperor, who ushered in two centuries of peace known as the Pax Romana.
Of course this meant peace for Rome itself, since Augustus spent most of his time building up the Roman Senate and killing people in other countries until they submitted to Roman rule.
He even chose the month of Sextilis to become ‘August’ because that was the time of year that he conquered Egypt, among other countries.
It was rumored that August (which originally had 29 days) has 31 days because Augustus stole days from February to make his month longer.
This, however, is untrue, as August was given its extra days by Julius Caesar, when he developed the Gregorian calendar in 45BC.
So let’s take a look at the weird & wonderful days in August!
August 1st – Raspberry Cream Pie Day.
Who doesn’t love pie? Pie is one of the oldest forms of food dating all the way back to 2000BC.
Sweet pies date back to 1304BC, so honor our ancestors today by eating some delicious Raspberry Cream Pie!
Feel comforted by the fact that raspberries are an excellent source of vitamins B1, B3 and C, and pie is an excellent source of deliciousness.
August 2nd – Ice Cream Sandwich Day.
One day there were cookies and ice cream, and some genius thought to themselves “I’ll make a sandwich out of these bad boys” and a tasty treat was born.
Today is the perfect excuse to eat an ice cream sandwich or three, especially if it’s hot where you are right now.
August 3rd – Grab Some Nuts Day.
Nuts are crazy healthy, people who eat nuts tend to live longer and have healthier hearts.
Today is not about any specific nut, of which there are many, so grab your favorites and enjoy this recent period of yummy days.
Tomorrow will be even better.
August 4th – Chocolate Chip Cookie Day.
What did I tell you? It’s Chocolate Chip Cookie Day!
There are at least four different versions of how the chocolate chip cookie was invented, but all agree upon the fact that it was invented in the 1930s at Toll House Inn, in Whitman, Massachusetts.
Make the most of the tastiest cookie there is, because there will be no excuse to stuff your face for at least a week now.
August 5th – Underwear Day.
Ah, underwear, it’s embarrassing when you’re seen in it, it’s embarrassing when you have to change it unexpectedly, and it’s embarrassing to buy it with your parents.
Embrace the embarrassment today, buy yourself some fancy underwear, go out in just your underwear, but please, for the love of god, wear some.
August 6th – Wiggle Your Toes Day.
Today is all about those little piggies that help you balance. Wear some flip flops and wiggle them about to celebrate the freedom.
Take a walk in the woods and soak your feet in a stream, wiggle your toes in some sand, just get them out and give them some much needed attention.
August 7th – Particularly Preposterous Packaging Day.
How many of us have cut ourselves attempting to get something out of rigid plastic packaging?
Have you ever had to get a Barbie out of its box for a hopeless looking child?
Then you have encountered the plight of particularly preposterous packaging.
Use today to let companies know just how much we hate having to sacrifice our fingertips, and our sanity, just to retrieve our own property.
This funny sounding day was created by Thomas Roy, who, together with his wife, has created over 80 ‘special’ days.
August 8th – Sneak Some Zucchini onto Your Neighbor’s Porch Day.
Zucchinis are a fruit that kind of looks like cucumber, and they are ready for harvest in August.
Just one plant will yield so much zucchini that you’ll pretty much have to sneak it somewhere or you’ll be eating it till Halloween.
You lose points if you get caught.
August 9th – Book Lovers Day.
This is the golden age of television and I like a good TV show as much as the next person.
But most of your favorite shows got their ideas from books, either with pictures or without.
If you’re not a big reader, then invest in some comics (but call them “graphic novels” so you sound grown up).
Today we celebrate the book, in all of its beautiful and weird forms.
If you already love books then my work here is done, but if you don’t then pick a book at random and educate yourself. Or pick up a trash novel and ignore the world for a few hours.
August 10th – Lazy Day.
So you’ve eaten your body weight in tasty treats, you’ve complained to companies about their packaging, you’ve even hidden fruits around your home town, now is the day to relax.
And since it’s Lazy Day, I’m done writing.
August 11th – Son’s and Daughter’s Day.
On Mother’s Day (and Father’s Day) there’s always one who asks when it’s Kid’s Day, to which the grown-ups reply “Every day is Kid’s Day”.
Well they’re Wrong!
Today is Son’s and Daughter’s Day, so tell your parents that they better start pampering you, with breakfast in bed, a weird handmade present, and then some kind of special dinner that only you like.
If you’re a parent, then set some time aside today to spend some quality time with the fruit of your loins; or buy them something obnoxiously noisy and invest in some earplugs.
August 12th – Middle Child Day.
Right on the heels of Son’s and Daughter’s Day comes Middle Child Day, a day for the neglected, overlooked middle child to get a bit of love from mom and dad.
However, were you aware that middle children tend to be the most successful of their siblings in later life?
Maybe the middle child traditionally gets less attention, but that lack of attention seems to produce the most well-rounded adults.
August 13th – Left-Handers Day.
Approximately 10% of the world’s population is left-handed.
Left-handed people have trouble using right-handed tools, which has led to a lot of discrimination from the time of the Industrial Revolution onwards, when tools and machines were mass produced for right-handed people.
Children who displayed left-handed tendencies were beaten and had their dominant hand tied behind their backs so that they had to use their right hand.
Today we should strive to acknowledge the inconveniences and hardships suffered by the left-handed people in our lives.
August 14th – Creamsicle Day.
Today is simple, enjoy a Creamsicle.
This humble snack consisting of ice cream and covered in flavored ice, is a favorite among many.
Be part of that many in celebration of the humble Creamsicle today.
August 15th – Relaxation Day.
Not to be confused with Lazy Day, Relaxation Day is about letting go of the stress and doing something that soothes you.
Turn your phone off, light some candles, punch a cardboard cut-out of your nemesis, take a bubble bath… do something that really de-stresses you.
August 16th – Rollercoaster Day.
Rollercoasters have been around, in one form or another, since the 17th Century.
Originally they were just hills of reinforced ice up to 24m (about 79 feet) high.
The first rollercoaster designed specifically for thrill seekers did not open until 1884, at Coney Island.
This kick started a whole group of engineers basically trying to outdo each other until the rollercoaster became the activity of choice for thrill-seekers on a budget.
Celebrate today by riding a rollercoaster, but don’t eat anything beforehand, if only for the poor people underneath!
August 17th – Black Cat Appreciation Day.
There are two schools of thought about black cats, one is that they are bad luck, witches’ familiars, and generally evil; the other is that black cats are good luck, and just all around handsome little dudes.
There are 22 cat breeds that have solid black coats, and, because of a high melanin pigment content, they also tend to have golden eyes rather than blue or green.
In England, “Black Cat Day” is celebrated on October 24th.
August 18th – Bad Poetry Day.
Today is all about celebrating bad poetry.
As an adolescent I spammed the internet with my share of cringe-inducing poetry, so I kind of feel like this is my day.
But you could just as easily seek out truly terrible poetry written by someone else to read out loud on the bus, yell from your bedroom window, or recite lackadaisically in reply to any question asked of you today.
August 19th – Aviation Day.
Founded in 1939 by Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Aviation Day is a day to recognize how the ability to fly has truly benefited mankind.
Without planes your special order of weird food from Asia would go bad before it got to you.
Without planes, we would not be connected to our international friends.
There are plenty of ways to celebrate Aviation Day, from taking an airplane ride (for those of you with plenty of time and money), to simply crafting the best paper airplane your fallible human hands can manage.
It’s easy to take modern conveniences for granted, try to remember how air travel has brought us together as a species.
August 20th – Chocolate Pecan Pie Day.
Yet another food day for you to celebrate. Chocolate Pecan Pie is a tasty twist on the Southern staple, there is not much information on Chocolate Pecan Pie, so I recommend that you just savor a slice today.
August 21st – Senior Citizen’s Day.
Honoring the older generation is what it’s all about.
Play some shuffle board, call your grandma, show the most forgotten age group that you have not forgotten them and show them that you appreciate all they have done for you.
August 22nd – Tooth Fairy Day.
American children receive on average $3.70 per tooth.
Which is crazy when you think that originally the Tooth Fairy only came for your sixth tooth, and the rest were either burned or buried in the back yard.
The idea of the Tooth Fairy is as old as the Vikings, and beliefs about its appearance are as varied as beliefs about Santa are not.
The tooth fairy has been depicted as: a child with wings, a dragon, a pixie, a flying ballerina, two little old men, a dental hygienist, a bat, a bear and, best of all, a pot-bellied flying man smoking a cigar.
Even if you’re too old to put a tooth under your pillow, maybe tell people about the pot-bellied, cigar smoking guy who takes your teeth; it’s funnier than Tinker Bell with a tooth fetish.
August 23rd – Ride The Wind Day.
In 1959 the Kremer Prize was introduced in the field of “man powered flight”. It was not won until 1977, four years after they upped the prize money from £5,000 to £50,000.
On this day in 1977, the Gossamer Condor 2 flew a distance of 2,172m (7,100 feet) using only the power of pedals.
Today we celebrate that man-made flight, and its creators, Dr. Paul B. Maccready, who built the Gossamer Condor 2, and its pilot Bryan Allen, who usually piloted hang gliders.
August 24th – Waffle Day.
Do you like waffles? Yeah, you like waffles.
Today you can shout it from the rooftops or just share the song on Facebook, because it’s Waffle Day.
Today commemorates the first waffle iron patent, issued on this day in 1869.
You may like them savory and made of potato, or fluffy and sweet may be your kind of thing, either way enjoy some tasty, tasty waffles.
August 25th – Kiss and Make Up Day.
We’ve all had stupid fights with loved ones in our lives.
Today is about letting the petty squabbles go and making up with someone you’ve become distanced from.
Don’t let that make you forgive a toxic influence on your life though, this is about letting petty things go, like who ate the last egg roll or who used all the milk.
Today, think about those people who are no longer included in your life…do they deserve it?
Even if the answer is yes, at least you have given some thought to “Kiss and Make Up Day”.
August 26th – Dog Day.
Founded in 2004 by Colleen Page, Dog Day is about celebrating the ownership of man’s best friend, specifically in a “happy, healthy, and abuse-free environment”.
Though if you raise a dog in any other way I, and a bunch of other people, personally judge you to be scum.
So spend today letting all doggos you know just who is a good dog (hint: it’s all of them).
August 27th – Just Because Day.
You get to make the rules today and the reason? Just because.
Why didn’t you clean your room? Just because.
Why did you spend all of your money on marshmallows? Just because.
This day started out as a holiday of the Goodwin family in the 1950s, but it grew into a fully grown holiday, just because.
August 28th – Crackers Over the Keyboard Day.
Today is a day to go crazy, to be free in a limited way.
Today you can eat cookies without a plate, eat crackers right over the keyboard and consequences be damned.
Until tomorrow, when you look down at your keyboard and realize the mayhem you have unleashed.
Another day created by Thomas Roy and his lovely wife Ruth.
August 29th – More Herbs, Less Salt Day.
We all know that too much salt is bad for you, so today sprinkle some chives onto your food instead.
If chives don’t grab you then a sprig of coriander (cilantro) or parsley can really make your meal pop.
This is the last Thomas Roy inspired day of our August countdown, and he’s encouraging us to be healthier and refine our palates.
Is there anything this man (and his wife) cannot do?
August 30th – International Day of the Disappeared.
Not all of the days can be fun, and today is about those families unlucky enough to not know the fates of their loved ones.
People get abducted, hospitalized, detained and killed around the world, and the work of institutions like Amnesty International, and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), ensures that these people’s families get to know just what has happened to their loved ones.
The ICRC even works to bring messages back to the families of the missing, in order to give them hope and peace of mind.
Today is about awareness and, hopefully, donations and volunteers for institutions which work hard to ensure there is no family left watching the door, not knowing if their loved ones will come home.
August 31st – Trail Mix Day.
Trail Mix is a lightweight, nutritious snack that is popular amongst hikers. Consisting of nuts, dried fruit, and chocolate, trail mix is popular the world over.
And, as with all foods that are consumed the world over; it has some pretty funny names including “gorp” (USA) and “schmogle” (New Zealand).
Most countries refer to trail mix as a student’s food, since it is cheap and goes well with alcohol, in Denmark there is a brand that literally translates as “Student Oats”, and in Lithuania they do away with any pretense and you can buy “Studentų maistas” (Student’s Food).
So today, give trail mix and chance, and don’t just pick the chocolate out, I see you.