Small Realities

Inside the mind of Lance Schonberg

The Geekiest of Holidays

Christmas, Halloween, Easter.  Our family does all of the standardized secular western holidays.  What can I say?  We’ve got kids and you should never miss a holiday that involves candy and/or presents.  There are other days in the year I consider very important as well, aside from birthdays and anniversaries, Remembrance Day (Nov 11) chief among them and I place some value on solstices and equinoxes for their solid meaning and ancient significance to every human who’s ever lived, whether they cared about them at the time or not.

But I’m also a geek and proud of it.  I’m raising little geeks, and proud of that, too.  Actually, at 8, 10, and 12, they’re not as little as they used to be, but they’re definitely my kids.  There are certain days of significance in the geek calendar, but the geek calendar is personal to each geek.

The High Geek Holidays of my personal calendar:

  • Darwin Day: February 12.  The anniversary of Charles Darwin’s birth, a celebration of science and reason.
  • Pi Day: March 14.  Get it?  3.14?
  • Star Wars Day: May the Fourth be with you.  Not the best pun you’ll ever see, but it makes the point pretty well.  In general geek culture, Star Wars is pretty important, even if you’re unable to completely ignore the prequels as they deserve.
  • Towel Day: May 25.  In celebration and remembrance of Douglas Adams and the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.  This date is also apparently Geek Pride Day, which I learned only after it was over this year.
  • Star Trek Day: September 08.  The anniversary of the original airing of “The Man Trap”, the first episode of the original Star Trek series to be broadcast.  For me personally, Star Trek is far more important than Star Wars, so this is a bigger deal than May the 4th, but I don’t expect everyone to agree.  To each their own.
  • Talk Like a Pirate Day: September 19.  Is there a reason for this one?  Well, it’s fun to talk like a pirate.  For a little while, at least.
  • Hobbit Day: September 22.  For those not steeped in the lore of Tolkien, this is Bilbo and Frodo’s birthday.  Not so much in the movies, but in the books has repeated significance.

There are plenty of others I don’t actually observe, but still find interesting or entertaining, like Programmer’s Day (13 September, the 256th day of the year, which I guess would be 12 September in Leap Years), First Contact Day (05 April – also a Star Trek reference: by canon, the first interaction between Humans and Vulcans happens on 05 Apr 2063), and Mole Day (October 23 from 6:02 am to 6:02 pm; Avogadro’s number is 6.02 x 10 ^ 23).

But there  really isn’t anything I observe between May and September, other than Canada Day (which isn’t exactly a High Geek day, but even geeks can have national pride), and most other standard holidays don’t really do it for me.  I feel the need to celebrate something that speaks to my not-so-inner geek, and I’ve got nothing until Star Trek Day.  Anyone have a recommendation for me?

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