Monday, February 02, 2009

We are either very Celebratory or very Foolhardy

Today is February 2nd, traditionally celebrated as Groundhog Dog, the day Puxatawney Phil predicts the continuation of winter, or the onset of spring... This year, I was watching the television coverage and noticing all the hoopla, partying, festivities associated with this event. And, it has spread around the country, with various rodents making similar predictions. In Lubbock, it is Prarie Dog Pete...

The festivities surrounding this event amazed me and made we wonder why we are such a partying society. Is it truly celebration of the event, or just "we don't need a reason to party, we just do." Granted, the Groundhog Day groundswell of festivities occurred after the movie of the same name, but think of what else we celebrate. February 2nd is also "the day the music died." This is the day Buddy Holly, the Big Bopper, and Richie Valens died in an airplane crash in Iowa, and this year is the 50th anniversary of the crash... Various commemorations acknowledged the event.

Think of what else we celebrate: the major holidays, of course, and a variety of Federal, State, County, local and religious holidays.

We have various designations for months: Breast Cancer Awareness Month, March is Social Work Month, Boss' Day, Administrative Assistants' Day; Black History Month. We celebrate sports: The college football bowl games, the Superbowl, Daytona 500, the World Series, March Madness. It is fitting that we celebrate the Presidential Inauguration, but it is not a national holiday. Mardi Gras and Halloween are important adult celebration days. Halloween has shifted from a children's celebration to an adult celebration. Mardi Gras is less about preparing for lent and more about a blow out bash.

Okay, I think about the Roman Empire, and some of my history memories include that the Roman Empire's decline in part was due to the hedonism of the leaders and the people... Are we headed that way?

I think acknowledgement and celebration are good, but I think moderation is the most vital factor in doing so... And honoring people is more important than events.