When the calendar makers were organizing their lists of special dates, they managed to overlook poor end-of-summer August. With no Memorial Day, no Mother's Day, no Labor Day or Thanksgiving, August just sits here in limbo, not quite sure how it fits into the scheme of American life.
But, if you look into the collection of bizarre and unique observations taking place in August, you'll realize it's a month to celebrate just about anything you can think of.
For instance, the entire 31-day period has been designated "Admit You're Happy Month" and "Family Fun Month."
To add to those outstanding calls for festivity, it's also "National Picnic Month." Seems like we're actually required to enjoy ourselves during these fading days of what has nationally been an over-heated summer.
Sports enthusiasts will appreciate the designation of August as "National Golf Month." And fisher-folk are also included in the observances with "National Catfish Month."
In addition to the celebrations throughout these 31 days, past Augusts have inspired many folks to exercise their creativity. The proof of that lies in the long list of items that were developed or patented during the period.
One of these was that tasty breakfast treat, Shredded Wheat. The cereal was patented on Aug. 1, 1893, and bananas everywhere became endangered.
On Aug. 2, 1858, the first mailbox was erected. That was in those long ago days before e-mail and texting. And at the time, for those communicating via the written word, the mailbox was a huge improvement over earlier methods, like the pony express.
Another impressive August invention was the revolving door. Patented on Aug. 7, 1888, this innovative entranceway was a delight for kids who enjoyed the challenge of finding just the right time to pop out of the thing.
One of my favorite August inventions has to be that treasure for housewives everywhere, the labor-saving washing machine. Patented on Aug. 9, back in 1910, this liberating invention turned the hated washboard into an instant antique, these days found only in pricey shops.
In addition to its long list of inventions, August also boasts some fun and funky days set aside for celebrations of special interests.
Today, Aug. 9, has been designated "Book Lovers Day," so stop by your nearest library and find a gem to read tonight instead of watching the same old television shows.
Aug. 10 may turn out to be my favorite observance of the entire month. It's the official "Lazy Day." I've had lots of practice observing this one. I think I've got it perfected.
The people who come up with these unusual observances have even developed one for all those youngsters - and adults - who have been feeling left out over the years. Aug. 12, "Middle Child's Day," celebrates the special folks who were sandwiched in between the oldest and the youngest in the family picture. For our daughter Sherri, this one's for you.
And, if nothing else during the month lights your fire, you'll still be able to find cause for celebration on Aug. 27. It's been named "Just Because Day." So whether you want to engage in labor or relax, create or veg out, read or go hiking, this designation will surely serve to help make the day special.
August may not offer a big official holiday, complete with bells and whistles, but there are enough causes for celebration during these 31 warm and waning days of summer to keep us all happily involved.
Take time to enjoy.