Friday, April 1, 2005

v2.3 - TGIF YO

Morning Folks,

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Happy April 1st to all my readers! Yes, today is the first day of April, the day we all play some sort of practical joke on each other causing embarassment and shame. How did we (society) ever come up with such a cruel day? Well, as always, I''m here to tell you why so sit back, grab a java and lets get this musing started.

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Our story starts way way back. We''re talking around the 1500s. Back in those days, different cultures celebrated their New Years on April 1st. Why you ask? The reason for this was because it closely followed what is known as the Vernal Equinox (March 20th or March 21st.) During medieval times, most of Europe celebrated March 25 as the Feast of Annunciation which signified the beginning of the new year. Interesting!

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Of course what would socity be without some huge change that made little sense? It wasn''t until 1582 when Pope Gregory XIII ORDERED a new calendar (aka The Gregorian Calendar) to replace the ''old'' Julian Calendar. This new calendar showed New Year''s Day to be celebrated on January 1. Of course many countries resisted this change. In fact, some European countries resisted for centuries (Scotland 1660; Germany, Denmark and Norway 1700; England 1752).

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So what''s so strange about that? Well, this is where it starts to get ''foolish'' :)

This new calendar was finally adopted by France in 1564. Due to the lack of wide communication in that day, many either refused to follow the new calendar or just didn''t know about it. As a result, you had some French people still celebrating New Years on April 1. This created a great opportunity for some as they would send people on what was known as ''Fool Errands'' on 1st of April to trick them into believing something false. Hense, April Fools :)

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The French began to call April 1st ''Poisson d''Avril'', or ''April Fish.'' The French children would sometimes tape a picture of a fish on the back of their schoolmates and then cry out ''Poisson d''Avril'' when the prank is discovered.

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If you find someone playing a practical joke on you today, just turn to them and yell ''Poisson d''Avril'' and see what kind of reaction you get :) That in itself may be the best April Fools joke yet.

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So there you have it folks. Just a little tidbit of knowledge that is more useless than that dangling strip of material hanging underneath your car. I''m typically a very careful person when it comes to days dedicated to practical jokes. However, I feel today someone has something planned for me so I''ll need to keep a close eye on my ''friends'' :)

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The next time you guys read my musing, I will be one year older. That''s right, my parents had a belated April Fools joke played on them 2 days after called my birth. This year I turn the big ol'' 29. Next year, I say goodbye to my 20s and hello to the 30s. /sigh

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Growing up, I never thought I''d see the day when I would start to get old. A wise woman once told me "You are only as old as you feel." I don''t think my mother really knew how right she was. Being the person I am, I had to research this saying and figure out who, how, why, etc. I came across several great articles that explain the "Only as old as you feel." One man by the name of Brian Tracy wrote a book entitled "Maximum Achievement". This book talks about the different ways to focus on your life. He states, ''Whatever you focus your constant attention on you tend to manifest in your life''. People who state you are only as old as you feel, tend to live healthier lives as they translate age into how they feel. They could be in their late 40s, but feel like they are in their 30s. Some form of mind over body stuff that few of us understand. Bottom line, good advice from my mom and something we can pass on to others that may cause some longterm good.

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Well gang, work is starting to get a wee bit hecktic here. I should sign off so I can support these customers before they get angry with me. If you ever call in to my office and don''t have a system under contract with us, don''t expect me to drop everything I''m working on to help you.

Anyway :) Take care my friends, have a safe and happy weekend. Feel free to send me email greeting cards or spam me with an April Fool''s joke today. It''s good to let that stuff out once in awhile :)

Take care!

Cheers,

Al