Monday, February 23, 2015

Holidays and Observances for Feb 23 2015

Curling is Cool Day

Although some fashionistas may be disappointed to learn this particular holiday has nothing whatsoever to do with hair, today's holiday has everything to do with a team sport that, at first glance, some may consider a bit peculiar.

Curling, a sport that began in Scotland centuries ago, is actually played during the Winter Olympic Games. In fact, curling is actually considered one of the fastest growing sports in America!

Curling is Fun
In a nutshell, four players on two teams slide eight heavy polished stones across ice toward a target at the other end of the ice. And just in case you are wondering why a broom is used in curling, sweeping makes the rock travel a longer distance and curl less. The goal is to get your stone closer to the center of the target. The team with the highest score total, wins.

Curling was invented in medieval Scotland, with the first written reference to a contest using stones on ice coming from the records of Paisley Abbey, Renfrewshire, in February 1541. Two paintings, 'Winter Landscape with a Bird Trap' and 'The Hunters in the Snow' (both dated 1565) by Pieter Bruegel the Elder depict Flemish peasants curling—Scotland and the Low Countries had strong trading and cultural links during this period, which is also evident in the history of golf.

Evidence that curling existed in Scotland in the early 16th century includes a curling stone inscribed with the date 1511 uncovered (along with another bearing the date 1551) when an old pond was drained at Dunblane, Scotland. Kilsyth Curling Club claims to be the first club in the world, having been formally constituted in 1716; it is still in existence today. Kilsyth also claims the oldest purpose-built curling pond in the world at Colzium, in the form of a low dam creating a shallow pool some 100 × 250 metres in size.

The word curling first appears in print in 1620 in Perth, in the preface and the verses of a poem by Henry Adamson. The game was (and still is, in Scotland and Scottish-settled regions like southern New Zealand) also known as "the roaring game" because of the sound the stones make while traveling over the pebble (droplets of water applied to the playing surface). The verbal noun curling is formed from the Scots (and English) verb curl, which describes the motion of the stone.

In the early history of curling, the playing stones (or rocks) were simply flat-bottomed river stones that were sometimes notched or shaped; the thrower, unlike those of today, had little control over the stone, and relied more on luck than on skill and strategy. Additionally, because of the variance and inconsistency found in the size of river stones, the velocity of so-called curls varied hugely.

It is recorded that in Darvel, East Ayrshire, the weavers relaxed by playing curling matches. The stones they used were the heavy stone weights from the weavers' warp beams, fitted with a detachable handle for the purpose. Many a wife would keep her husband's brass curling stone handle on the mantelpiece, brightly polished until the next time it was needed.

Outdoor curling was very popular in Scotland between the 16th and 19th centuries, as the climates provided good ice conditions every winter. Scotland is home to the international governing body for curling, the World Curling Federation, Perth, which originated as a committee of the Royal Caledonian Curling Club, the mother club of curling.

Today, the game is most firmly established in Canada, having been taken there by Scottish emigrants. The Royal Montreal Curling Club, the oldest established sports club still active in North America, was established in 1807. The first curling club in the United States was established in 1830, and the game was introduced to Switzerland and Sweden before the end of the 19th century, also by Scots. Today, curling is played all over Europe and has spread to Japan, Australia, New Zealand, China, and Korea.

The first world championship for curling was limited to men and was known as the Scotch Cup, held in Falkirk and Edinburgh, Scotland, in 1959. The first world title was won by the Canadian team from Regina, Saskatchewan, skipped by Ernie Richardson.

International Dog Biscuit Appreciation Day

International Dog Biscuit Appreciation Day is celebrated on February 23rd of each year.

A dog biscuit is a hard biscuit-based dietary supplement for dogs or other canine, similar to human snack food.

Dog biscuits tend to be hard and dry. Dog biscuits may be sold in a flat bone-shape. Some manufacturers claim the dry and hard biscuit texture helps clean the dog’s teeth, promoting oral health.

“Dog’s bread”, made from bran, has been mentioned since at least Roman times. It was already criticized (as in later centuries) as particularly bad bread; Juvenal refers to dog’s bread as “filth” – “And bit into the filth of a dog’s bread” Et farris sordes mordere Canini.

In Spain, “pan de perro” is mentioned as early as 1623 in a play by Lope de Vega. It is used here in the sense of giving someone blows; to “give dog’s bread” to someone could mean anything from mistreating them to killing them. The latter meaning refers to a special bread (also called zarazas) made with ground glass, poison and needles and intended to kill dogs.

The bread meant as food for dogs was also called parruna and was made from bran. This was very likely what was referred to in associating the bread with (non-fatal) mistreatment. In France, Charles Estienne wrote in 1598: “Take no notice of bran bread,… it is better to leave it for the hunting, or shepherd, or watch dogs.” By the nineteenth century, “pain de chien” had become a way of referring to very bad bread: “It is awful, general, they give us dog’s breed!”

The English dog biscuit appears to be a nineteenth century innovation: “With this may be joined farinaceous and vegetable articles — oatmeal, fine-pollard, dog-biscuit, potatoes, carrots, parsnips” (1827); “being in the neighbourhood of Maidenhead, I inspected Mr. Smith’s dog-biscuit manufacture, and was surprised to find he has been for a long period manufacturing the enormous quantity of five tons a-week !” (1828).

National Banana Bread Day

National Banana Bread Day  is celebrated on Feb. 23rd every year, due to the undisputed reason people all over the world love the flavor of bananas. This zest and flavor of banana drove people to celebrate the National Banana Bread Day  and now over the years it has become a pleasure to celebrate this day with pomp and show. All who love the luscious aroma and taste of this amazing fruit can send invites and welcome notes to their loved ones to celebrate this day together with warmth. Banana bread was a novel innovation of the desert island, using the fruit numerous delicacies of various taste can be catered according to our crave.

Apparently around the world supermarkets and manufacturers of confectionery sell assorted pastries, breads, mousse, pies and tart to tame your entire taste buds with the rich flavor of banana through this banana bread week. One of the bakers, who love this occasion, says I love this National Banana Bread Day  and truly enjoy it, though I am not a big baker. All the banana lovers’ unanimously state vow it’s the National Banana Bread Day , which means time on for banana recipes. Some of the well known recipes which are cherished by all is the “Banana crumb bread, chocolate banana bread pudding” etc. If you are calorie conscious and is on a weight loss trip then you might as well use the microwave instead of the baking pan with lesser loads of butter and other saturated fats.

National Banana Bread Day is designated to celebrate just everything and anything amusing about the fruit, it’s also a great way to warm up your kitchen by baking moist, fresh and sweet fragrant banana bread. Despite our commercial uncertainties, which lays off our efforts to grow our own banana sapling, banana is an easily available tropical fruit all over the world and everybody would deliberately attempt to buy the fruit more often than any. Banana is an excellent source of energy contains enormous carbohydrates and can be grouped under simple source of carbohydrates, i.e. a quick energy builder. It also contains potassium and other essential minerals which is needed for the enrichment of the human health. It’s a cost-effective and energetic snack for a school goers.

The potassium in the fruit can keep hypertension at bay, it can help to regulate fluctuations in blood pressure and also alleviate joint pain and muscle cramps. Banana when consumed with vitamin c sources like orange juice can help in the absorption of the potassium in the blood. If bananas are bought raw they do ripen at room temperature and can be stored till the day of consumption for a week’s time. If you intend to sustain the fruit for longer than a week, wrap the fruit with wet cloth and refrigerate this will preserve the fruit ripe and fresh inside even if the skin at the exterior turns black. Even if the fruit is fully ripen and the skin has turned dark it can be used beautifully for baking due to its rich favor and aroma. The ripen state of the fruit gives us also an excuse to cater our well longed for banana bread. Over-ripe bananas render a much stronger flavor for the baked bread. These over-ripe fruits are also easy to mash and can effortlessly kneaded to a loaf, ready for baking. Generally the over-ripe bananas are kneaded and stored in a heavily sealed freezer bag, it is always better to label it since the contents look unappealing to consume.

You can look for ½ a cup of banana cup from a fully ripe medium sized banana. Once you're ready with the mixture pull out the baggie and you are all set for the baking process. Most of the coconut detesters loved banana bread as their personal favorite. If you love anything with chocolate then banana and chocolate make a great combo by default. Thus a day to celebrate your very own and cherished fruit banana is “National Banana Bread Day ”. Many cities have their own innovative delicacies and pastry shops come up with amazing bakeries which add novelty to the National Banana Bread Day .

Play Tennis Day

Play Tennis Day is celebrated on February 23rd of each year.

Sports activities are good as they prove to be good exercise for all people of all ages. A wide array of choices make sports a very entertaining activity as well. Health conditions and body built are important factors to consider when choosing a sport. But nothing beats availability and convenience. If you want a large group game, you can always learn basketball or baseball. But if you're contented with one or three, tennis is just right for you!

The first observance of this fun holiday has not been recorded. However, this date is the anniversary of the lawn tennis being patented in 1874 by Walter Wingfield of Pimlico, England. Its purpose is to play tennis and promote this game.

On this day, many schools and sports organizations conduct games worldwide. Tennis is a sport that people usually play individually against a single opponent (singles) or between two teams of two players each (doubles). This game is always part of any school’s varsity game listings for competition with other schools or locality.

If this day turns to be sunny, playing a set of lawn tennis with friends would be a good way of celebrating the day. Otherwise, watching tennis games on the television or playing online tennis games would be alternatives. Sending ecards or tennis crossword puzzles to friends on the fun day will surely help in the awareness objective of the day.

Tennis is a sport usually played between two players (singles) or between two teams of two players each (doubles). Each player uses a racket that is strung to strike a hollow rubber ball covered with felt over a net and into the opponent’s court. The object of the game is to play the ball in such a way that the opponent is not able to play a good return. Tennis is an Olympic sport and is played at all levels of society at all ages. The sport can be played by anyone who can hold a racket, including people in wheelchairs.

The modern game of tennis originated in Birmingham, England, in the late 19th century as “lawn tennis”. It had close connections both to various field (“lawn”) games such as croquet and bowls as well as to the older racquet sport of real tennis. During most of the 19th-century in fact, the term “tennis” referred to real tennis, not lawn tennis: for example, in Disraeli’s novel Sybil (1845), Lord Eugene De Vere announces that he will “go down to Hampton Court and play tennis.”.

The rules of tennis have not changed much since the 1890s. Two exceptions are that from 1908 to 1961 the server had to keep one foot on the ground at all times, and the adoption of the tie-break in the 1970s. A recent addition to professional tennis has been the adoption of electronic review technology coupled with a point challenge system, which allows a player to contest the line call of a point.

Tennis is enjoyed by millions of recreational players and is also a hugely popular worldwide spectator sport, especially the four Grand Slam tournaments (also referred to as the “Majors”): the Australian Open played on hard courts, the French Open played on red clay courts, Wimbledon played on grass courts, and the US Open played also on hard courts.