Peggy Keener: May, a month of dipsy days

Published 5:49 pm Friday, May 27, 2022

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Recently, a fascinating bit of May information has been brought to my attention. You may have never heard this story, but, now you will.. It goes like this:

Back in 1912, Hellman’s mayonnaise was not manufactured in the U.S., but rather in England. In fact, the planned maiden voyage of the Titanic was loaded with 12,000 jars of the delicious condiment scheduled for delivery in New York. Following that, the next port of call for the great ship was Vera Cruz, Mexico.

The Mexicans love mayonnaise, just like us, and this was to be the largest single shipment ever delivered to Mexico. But, alas, as we all know, the ship never made it. The Titanic hit an iceberg and sank. The creamy cargo was lost forever.

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The eagerly awaiting Mexicans were devastated by this catastrophic news: really disconsolate over the loss. Indeed their anguish was so great they declared a National Day of Mourning. They still, all these years later, observe it.

The National Day of Mourning occurs each year on May 5th and is known, of course, as Sinko de Mayo.


There are plenty of reasons to love May. Why, each day brings a celebration of a different kind. Who, for example, knew that May 4 was Bird Day? I actually just saw a humming bird and rejoiced over its return after flying thousands of miles to land in my backyard. Does this mean, however, that I must also celebrate the arrival of the turkey vultures? What a gloom they are to glorious nature—indeed, the Hoover/Bissells of the outdoors. I’ll give them this, though. They are the non-picky avatars who clean up the kind of unspeakable messes we, the persnickety, don’t want to touch.

I personally think May 6 is one of the best days of the month. It’s International No Diet Day. I guess it means that folks all over the planet are allowed to eat their heads off, engorging themselves with an excess of anything that can be stuffed down a human gullet. Arrgghh. Burp!

May 10 is Stay Up All Night, Night. Just think, you can celebrate New Year’s Eve in May with no resolution making. Party hearty in your bikini and Speedo.This would be a fun adventure except that the next day, May 11, is National Eat What You Want Day. Won’t you be too tired to eat? Besides you’ll be recovering from No Diet Day only to turn around and go whole hog gastronomically ballistic again. Give it a rest, folks. Who thinks of these days, anyway?

Shall I go on? Apparently May is the month of gormandizing. These next special days are really too much. May 13 is National Hummus Day followed by May 14, National Buttermillk Biscuit Day. Does this mean you should forgo the butter and jam and slather hummus on your biscuits? Not gonna happen at my house.

Surely this hints of sacrilege, don’t you think? Yes, I’m pretty sure there’s a commandment against this. The buttermilk biscuit is so adored, coveted and crazy worshiped by us of the Great North that it seems verboten to defile it. Defile it, like putting hummus on it. Spare me.

All this brings us to May 15, Chocolate Chip Day, followed by both May 17, Walnut Day and May 19, National Devil’s Food Cake Day. Now, it seems that anyone with even an ounce of common sense would have figured out that if they joined the three days, they could simply call them Brownie Days. I suppose that would be too easy, though. Besides all the people born on the 15 th and the 17th would be totally vexed and feel gypped.

In every respect, these special days are getting too bizarre. Like in my opinion it would be better just to cross May 18 off the calendar. It’s so dumb. National No Dirty Dishes Day. See. I told you. Dumb. I’m not sure if you’re supposed to wash every dish the moment it’s used or allow all the dirty dishes to pile up in greasy, wobbly stacks in the kitchen sink. I choose to ignore this dumb nonsense.

Shall I go on?

Yes! Because next on the calendar is National Vanilla Pudding Day on May 22. It would be convenient and cinchy if this day were combined with National No Dirty Dishes Day because we all lick the vanilla pudding bowls clean anyway. Well, don’t we?

I don’t even know where to go with May 23. Don’t get me wrong, but why would we folks in Minnesota celebrate a pre-historic reptile that we seldom even see? I suppose there is great merit in dedicating an entire day to World Turtle Day, but, blimey, I think I’ll stick with Chocolate Chip Day.

About now things are looking suspiciously like certain companies may have a hand in promoting these days. What? Could it be? Hmmm, let’s see. May 24, ( Asparagus Day) and May 25,( National Wine Day), certainly look suspect to me. On the other hand, there is a perfectly legit day on May 26. National Blueberry Cheesecake Day! Now we’re talkin’. Still one has to wonder where Kemps is on that day? Or can’t a day be Ala Mode?

One May day, albeit, does stand out from all the rest. It’s May 27. Vigilance is required. Absolutely no lolligaging on this day or it will melt away. You see, this highly important day—clearly the most cherished day of the entire year—is National Grape Popsicle Day. You won’t have to look at a calendar to know this, because all around you will be folks with purple tongues—and proud of them.

As for me, I like all of May because it is the first month that has the fortitude to snub its nose at winter. It’s when this rather trepidatious little collection of 31 days defies the big bad ice and snow months, declaring to their frigid winds and flurries that enough is enough. It’s chutzpah!

May has under its belt a world of green things ready to stab out of the earth. It is astounding the energy it holds in its warming dirt. Furthermore, May teaches us what the word “green” means. And after a long winter, May allows us to see what else our world can look like.

It seems ridiculous to divide May into specially designated days. They’re all special. For goodness sakes, each May morning is a surprise. Just look at them. May mornings come with a new landscape; a new beginning. Such nonsense it is to declare one of these precious days as something distinctive when we know there is nothing more delicate, more delicious, and more desirable than all the fresh new Minnesota Days in May.