November 30, 2022
😩 Have holiday gatherings already wiped you out?
MAYBE YOU JUST NEED SOME SPACE
Did you know that today is National Personal Space Day? True story!
Fitting that it falls right in the middle of the holiday season, with its customary barrage of obligatory familial and professional "parties," full of close-talking conspiracy theorist relatives and inappropriately confessional co-workers.
If you're inclined toward introversion and are already overwhelmed by the seasonal gauntlet of socialization, today is a prime opportunity to take some "you" time to recharge your batteries.
The opposite of what you're giving this gentleman, Clarence.
GIF via Wonder Showzen/MTV
Today is also National Mousse Day, which I suppose is fine and dandy if you have a positive personal history with the classic French delicacy. I, unfortunately, do not. Over on Facebook & Instagram last week, we asked what everyone's least favorite Thanksgiving dish was. I chimed in from my personal account that mine was asparagus mousse.
You read that right — asparagus mousse. This...concoction...was a fixture of my family's Thanksgiving festivities for several years until 1998, when my mom asked us around the dinner table one night while I was home visiting from college if my dad, brothers, or I had any special requests for Thanksgiving, to which I sheepishly replied "to not have to eat asparagus mousse?"
My mom was shocked by this request, as my dad and I always forced down a helping to be polite, which she took to mean we liked it. We...did not.
In many ways, this was the day I became an adult. Some people have mitzvahs, some enlist in the armed services, and I took a stand against asparagus mousse. We all have our struggles and formative experiences to get through.
Finally, today is National Computer Security Day. I cannot tell you how many times since March 2020 I have been on video calls with otherwise very smart people sharing their screens with bright red security update warnings in the corner of their browser windows or in the bottom corner of their desktops. It's so easy and fast to do, so just freaking do it!
What happened on November 30ths of the past? Here are a few things:
• On this day in 1982 Michael Jackson's sixth studio album, Thriller, was released worldwide, eventually becoming the best-selling album in history
• Irish satirist, essayist, and modest proposer Jonathan Swift was born this day in 1667. I think we all know what he would have had for Thanksgiving dinner had he been born here in the US. (Babies. The answer is babies.)
• Happy birthday to novelist, humorist, and critic Samuel Langhorne "Mark Twain" Clemens, born this day in 1835! Yes, he made some objectionable lexical choices in his works, and that should be acknowledged, but so should the fact that the dude could write. (Please don't cancel me for liking A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court.)
• Hammer some nails in honor of firearm magnate Oliver Winchester, born this day in 1810! Sure, his products made murder exceptionally efficient, but we did get a pretty cool haunted mansion out of it!
• On this day in 1874 Winston Churchill was born. I'll acknowledge this because he said and wrote some amusing sh!t in his life, but I'm kinda over the whole "pretending to care about dead heads of state from a country we beat twice in global conflict." (J/k, Britons — thanks for the Beatles, Stones, The Smiths, Elton John, Queen, and Oasis!)
• Famed political criminal and rat-eater G. Gordon Liddy was born this day in 1930
• Famed TV host & producer Dick Clark was born this day in 1929. Here's hoping we all have a rockin' New Year's Eve in a few weeks!
• Famed playwright and F-word enthusiast David Mamet was born this day in 1947
• Famed portrayer of Inigo Montoya Mandy Patinkin was born this day in 1952! Here's hoping he celebrates by lopping off someone's extraneous sixth finger.
• Today is also the birthday of: actor and voice of Batman Kevin Conroy (1955), punk heartthrob William "Billy Idol" Broad (1955), Psychedelic Furs' guitarist John Ashton (1957), Runaways singer-songwriter Cherie Currie (1959), football & baseball legend Bo Jackson (1962), and actor/director/producer/screenwriter Ben "Son of Jerry" Stiller (1965)
• Finally, pour one out for playwright, novelist, and essayist Oscar Wilde (d. 1900), bossanova guitarist Charlie Byrd (d. 1999), and stuntman/cape enthusiast Evel Knievel (d. 2007)
Alright, you've waited long enough — on to the links!
Yes, I will help you figure out Venmo, dad. Lead with that next time! I thought someone important had died.
We asked you on Facebook & Instagram which phrases you were sick of hearing, and the Boredwalk creator team had some fun acting them out!
Nice knowing you, beauty sleep!
Comedy person Lisa Timmons sets out to uncover the truth.
Toronto yoga studio Yoga Kawa brings you...puppy yoga! I will definitely get downward with some uncomfortable stretching if there are actual dogs in the offing.
OK! We'll be back here in your inbox on Friday with more nonsense holidays to dissect, more notable birthdays (and deathdays!) to celebrate, and more witty content in general. Don't miss it! Until next time...
Peace, love, and personal space,