Posted in books

National Poetry Month (USA)

National Poetry Month takes place each April in the United States It was introduced in 1996 by the Academy of American Poets as a way to increase awareness and appreciation of poetry in the United States. The Academy of American Poets’ website Poets.org serves as a hub for information about local poetry events during the month. The organization also provides free educational resources to teachers for classroom celebrations and activities, and commissions an annual festival poster. Since 1998, National Poetry Month has also been celebrated each April in Canada

National Poetry Month was inspired by the success of Black History Month and Women’s History Month. In 1995, the Academy of American Poets convened a group of publishers, booksellers, librarians, literary organizations, poets, and teachers to discuss the need and usefulness of a similar monthlong holiday to celebrate poetry. The first National Poetry Month was held in 1996. In 1998, the Academy of American Poets joined the American Poetry & Literacy Project to distribute 100,000 free books of poetry from New York to California during National Poetry Month. On April 22, President Clinton and the First Lady hosted a gala at the White House that featured Poets Laureate Robert Pinsky, Robert Hass, and Rita Dove.

For National Poetry Month in 2001, the Academy of American Poets invited people to “vote” for poets they most wanted to have a postage stamp. More than 10,000 people cast ballots, with Langston Hughesreceiving the most votes. The vote tally was sent to the United States Postal Service, which issued a Langston Hughes stamp in January 2002. In April 2005 the Empire State Building was illuminated with blue lights to mark the 10th anniversary of National Poetry Month.In 2006, the Academy of American Poets launched Poem-a-Day, publishing one new poem on its website Poets.org each day during the month-long celebration. Poem-a-Day is now a daily, year-long series, which has been syndicated by King Features. In 2012, the Academy of American Poets launched the Dear Poet project, which invites students to read and write poems during National Poetry Month, some of which are published on Poets.org. The project is accompanied by a lesson plan offered to K-12 teachers for free. Each year, a special poster is commissioned by the Academy of American Poets for National Poetry Month, with almost 150,000 copies distributed to schools, libraries, and community centers for free. In the past, posters have been designed by noted graphic designers such as Chip Kidd and Milton Glaser. The 2015 National Poetry Month poster has been designed by New Yorker illustrator Roz Chast. Numerous books and poetry compilations have been published acknowledging National Poetry Month, such as The Knopf National Poetry Month Collection by Random House and Celebrating National Poetry Monthby children’s book author and poet Bruce Larkin.

Meanwhile in the United Kingdom National Poetry Day, is celebrated on the first or second Thursday of October in the United Kingdom. Events take place in schools, pubs, arts centres, bookshops, libraries, buses, trains and Women’s Institutes, and the day is the focus for media attention for poetry. National Poetry Day is co-ordinated by the Forward Arts Foundation (a registered charity), which also runs the Forward Prizes for Poetry. A theme is chosen in consultation with the National Poetry Day partners: in 2015, National Poetry Day occurred on October 8 and had the theme Light.

Since 1999, National Poetry Month has been celebrated each April in Canada, where it is sponsored by the League of Canadian Poets and organized around a different annual theme. In 1999, UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) declared March 21 to be World Poetry Day. The purpose of the day is to promote the reading, writing, publishing and teaching of poetry throughout the world and, as the UNESCO session declaring the day says, to “give fresh recognition and impetus to national, regional and international poetry movements.”

In the United Kingdom the festival “October is National Poetry Month” was founded in 2000 by Celtic bard Jim MacCool nd was adopted by the Birmingham-based Performance Poetry Society that same year. From makeshift beginnings, National Poetry Month has been taken up by primary and secondary schools, colleges of further education, public library services, the prison estate, and to a lesser extent, more localised festivals. Professional poets appear in all corners of the United Kingdom under the aegis of the Performance Poetry Society, which co-ordinates a proportion of their efforts and ensures that they are paid a normal rate for their appearances.

Posted in Uncategorized

Anne McCaffrey

Best known for the Dragonriders of Pern science fiction series the American Born Irish Novellist Anne Inez McCaffrey was Born 1 April 1926 in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She attended Stuart Hall (a girls’ boarding school in Staunton, Virginia), and graduated from Montclair High School in New Jersey. In 1947 she graduated cum laude from Radcliffe Collegewith a degree in Slavonic Languages and Literature.In 1950 she married Horace Wright Johnson who shared her interests in music, opera and ballet. They had three children: Alec Anthony, born 1952; Todd, born 1956 and Georgeanne (“Gigi”, Georgeanne Kennedy), born 1959. the family lived for most of a decade in Wilmington, Delaware And also Spent a short time in Düsseldorf.

They moved to Sea Cliff, Long Island in 1965, and McCaffrey became a full-time writer.McCaffrey served a term as secretary-treasurer of the Science Fiction Writers of America from 1968 to 1970. In addition to handcrafting the Nebula Award trophies, her responsibilities included production of two monthly newsletters and their distriution by mail to the membership. McCaffrey emigrated to Ireland with her two younger children in 1970, weeks after filing for divorce. Ireland had recently exempted resident artists from income taxes, an opportunity that fellow science-fiction author Harry Harrison had promptly taken and helped to promote. McCaffrey’s mother soon joined the family in Dublin. the following spring, McCaffrey was guest of honor at her first British science-fiction convention. There she met British reproductive biologist Jack Cohen, who would be a consultant on the science of Pern.

McCaffrey had had two short stories published during the 1950s. “Freedom of the Race”, about women impregnated by aliens) was written in 1952 and the second story, “The Lady in the Tower”, was published in The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction. She was also lnvited to the Milford Writer’s Workshop, where participants each brought a story to be critiqued. In 1959 she wrote “The Ship Who Sang”, the story which began the Brain & Brawn Ship series, which she considered her best story and her favorite. McCaffrey then wrote two more “Ship” stories and began her first novel , Restoree (1967), which featured an intelligent, survivor-type woman as the protagonist”. Her next novel Decision at Doona opens on “an overcrowded planet where just talking too loud made you a social outcast”. McCaffrey also competed for the 1971 publication Dragonquest and two Gothic novels for Dell, The Mark of Merlin and The Ring of Fear.With a contract for The White Dragon (which would complete the “original trilogy” with Ballantine), The young-adult book market provided a crucial opportunity. and McCaffrey started the Pern story of Menolly. Starting with “The Smallest Dragonboy” , the Crystal Singer and Dragonsong and The tales of Menolly are continued in Dragonsinger: Harper of Pern, and Dragondrums as the “Harper Hall Trilogy”.

Whilst brainstorming about dragons she devised a “technologically regressed survival planet” whose people were united against a threat from space .The dragons became the biologically renewable air force, and their riders ‘the few’ who, like the RAF pilots in World War Two, fought against incredible odds day in, day out.”The first Pern story, “Weyr Search”, was published in 1967 It won the 1968 Hugo Award for best novella, voted by participants in the annual World Science Fiction Convention The second Pern story, “Dragonrider”, won the 1969 Nebula Award for best novella, voted annually by the Science Fiction Writers of America. McCaffrey was the first woman to win a Hugo for fiction and the first to win a Nebula.” Weyr Search” covers the recruitment of a young woman, Lessa, to establish a telepathic bond with a queen dragon at its hatching, thus becoming a dragonrider and the leader of a Weyr community

The next novel. “Dragonrider” explores the growth of the queen dragon Ramoth, and the training of Lessa and Ramoth. . The third story, “Crack Dust, Black Dust”, was not published until 1974–1975. She wrote A Time When, which would become the first part of The White Dragon which was released with new editions of the first two Pern books, with cover art illustrated by Michael Whelan. It was the first science-fiction book by a woman on the New York Times bestseller list.in 2005 the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America named McCaffrey its 22nd Grand Master, an annual award to living writers of fantasy and science fiction. She was inducted by the Science Fiction Hall of Fame on 17 June 2006. Sadly though McCaffrey died at age 85 on 21 November 2011 at her home in Ireland, following a stroke, however her novels remain popular and i think Michael Whelan’s illustrations are fantastic too.

Posted in music

Marvin Gaye

American singer songwriter and musician Marvin Gaye was born April 2, 1939. Marvin Gaye helped to shape the sound of Motown Records in the 1960s with a string of hits, including “How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You)” and “I Heard It Through the Grapevine”, and duet recordings with Mary Wells and Tammi Terrell, later earning the titles “Prince of Motown” and “Prince of Soul”. During the 1970s, he recorded the concept albums What’s Going On and Let’s Get It On and became one of the first artists in Motown to break away from the reins of its production company. Gaye’s later recordings influenced several R&B subgenres, such as quiet storm and neo-soul.

Marvin began singing in church at age four and was accompanied by his father on piano. Gaye developed a love of singing at an early age and was encouraged to pursue a professional music career after a performance at a school play. Marvin attended Cardozo High School and joined several doo-wop vocal groups, including the Dippers and the D.C. Tones.The younger Marvin’s relationship with his father worsened during his teenage years .Following an argument in which he stood up against his father, the younger Marvin walked out of the house for good and dropped out of high school. With dreams of being a flyer, 17-year-old Marvin enlisted in the United States Air Force as a Basic Airman. However he faked mental illness and was discharged shortly afterwards. Following his return, Marvin and good friend Reese Palmer formed the vocal quartet The Marquees.The group performed Gaye released his first single, “Let Your Conscience Be Your Guide” in May 1961, with the album, The Soulful Moods of Marvin Gaye, following a month later. The Marquees Were signed to Columbia subsidiary OKeh Records.The group’s sole single, “Wyatt Earp”, failed to chart and the group was soon dropped from the label.

During this period Marvin began composing music and.The Marquees changed their name to Harvey and the “New Moonglows” and recorded several sides for Chess in 1959, including the song “Mama Loocie”, They also found work as session singers for established acts such as Chuck Berry, singing on the hits “Back in the U.S.A.” and “Almost Grown”. In 1960, the group disbanded and Marvin signed as a session musician, playing drums on several Tri-Phi releases. Sadly Gaye’s initial recordings were flops. Gaye spent most of 1961 performing session work as a drummer for artists such as The Miracles, The Marvelettes and blues artist Jimmy Reed.In 1962, Gaye found success as co-writer of the Marvelettes hit, “Beechwood 4-5789” and also released the songs, “Stubborn Kind of Fellow”, “Hitch Hike”and “Pride and Joy” these were included on Gaye’s second album, That Stubborn Kinda Fellow. Gaye performed as part of the Motortown Revue. A performance of Gaye at the Apollo Theater was also filmed. Then signed with Motown subsidiary Tamla and performed of jazz music and standards, having no desire to become an R&B performer.Before the release of his first single, Marvin was teased about his surname, with some jokingly asking, “Is Marvin Gay?” Marvin changed his surname by adding an “e”, following the style of Sam Cooke.

In 1964, Gaye recorded a successful duet album with singer Mary Wells titled Together, including the songs “Once Upon a Time” and “What’s the Matter With You Baby”. Gaye’s next solo hit was “How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You)”. Gaye also appeared on the TV. show American Bandstand and the concert film, The T.A.M.I. Show. Gaye had two number one R&B singles in 1965 with the Miracles-composed “I’ll Be Doggone” and “Ain’t That Peculiar”. After scoring a hit duet, “It Takes Two” with Kim Weston, Gaye began working with Tammi Terrell on a series of duets, mostly composed by Ashford & Simpson, including “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough”, “Your Precious Love”, “Ain’t Nothing Like the Real Thing” and “You’re All I Need to Get By”.”I Heard It through the Grapevine” was recorded by Gaye in April 1967, and became Gaye’s first to reach number one , followed by “Too Busy Thinking About My Baby” and “That’s the Way Love Is”.

The album M.P.G. became his first number one R&B album. Gaye produced and co-wrote two hits for The Originals during this period, including “Baby I’m For Real” and “The Bells”. Gaye’s new song “What’s Going On”, was inspired by an idea from Renaldo “Obie” Benson of the Four Tops after he witnessed an act of police brutality at an anti-war rally in Berkeley which became a huge hit and was also the title of Gaye’s next album Which also featured the singles, “Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology)” and “Inner City Blues”and was described as “the most important and passionate record to come out of soul music, delivered by one of its finest voices”. The album received two Grammy Award nominations and several NAACP Image Awards. Gaye then released the soundtrack and subsequent score, Trouble Man, released in late 1972.

In 1973, Gaye released the album Let’s Get It On. This included the song of the same name which became Gaye’s second number one single together with the songs “Come Get to This” and “You Sure Love to Ball”. Marvin’s final duet project, Diana & Marvin, with Diana Ross, garnered international success. Responding to demand from fans and Motown, Gaye went on tour starting AT the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum and this performance received critical acclaim and resulted in the release of the live album, Marvin Gaye Live! and its single, a live version of “Distant Lover”, an album track from Let’s Get It On.Gaye toured throughout 1974 and 1975 and gave a performance at a UNESCO benefit concert at New York’s Radio City Music Hall to support UNESCO’s African literacy drive, resulting in him being commended at the United Nations. Gaye’s next studio album, I Want You, followed in 1976 with the title track becoming a number-one R&B hit. That summer, Gaye embarked on his first European tour in a decade, starting off in England and issued the live album, Live at the London Palladium, featuring the song, “Got to Give It Up”.In December 1978, Gaye issued Here, My Dear, inspired by the fallout of his first marriage to Anna Gordy.

Sadly Gaye became addicted to cocaine and had serious financial problems with the Inland Revenue Service. In 1980, Gaye went on a European tour . After the tour he relocated to London where he feared imprisonment for failure to pay back taxes, which had now reached upwards to $4.5 million.(US$12,880,250 in 2014 dollars. Gaye decided to rework Love Man from its original disco concept to another personal album invoking religion and the possible end time from a chapter in the Book of Revelation entitled In our Lifetime. However the Master Tape was stolen. Motown remixed the album and issued it on January 15, 1981 without permission, prompting Gaye not to record any more music for Motown. In 1981, Gaye relocated to Ostend, Belgium where He began attending a local Ostend church, regaining personal confidence. Following several months of recovery, Gaye sought a comeback onstage, starting the short-lived Heavy Love Affair tour in England and Ostend between June and July 1981.

Gaye then released his first post-Motown album titled Midnight Love. The first single, “Sexual Healing”, was released in 1982, and became a huge hit, winning two Grammy Awards and becoming Gaye’s most successful single to date. In 1983 Gaye performed “The Star-Spangled Banner” at the NBA All-Star Game, accompanied by Gordon Banks and also performed at the Motown 25: Yesterday, Today, Forever special and also made his final TV Performance on Soul Train. Gaye embarked on his final concert tour, titled the Sexual Healing Tour, in 1983 in San Diego, California. Midnight Love was nominated for a Grammy in the Best Male R&B Vocal Performance, his fourteenth and final nomination.

Sadly on April 1 1984, Gaye was shot twice by his Father and was rushed to California Hospital Medical Center but was pronounced dead on arrival. Gaye died a day before turning 45. The gun with which Marvin Gaye, Sr. shot his son was given to him by Marvin as a Christmas present. Following his funeral, Marvin was cremated with part of his ashes spread near the Pacific Ocean. Since his death in 1984, Gaye has been posthumously honored by many institutions, including the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Marvin’s fans have also held vigils for the singer at the final residence to celebrate the day of his birth. Marvin was the father of three children, Marvin III, Nona and Frankie, and the grandfather of three boys, Marvin IV, Nolan and Dylan. At the time of his death, he was survived by his three children, parents and five siblings.

Posted in aviation

Royal Air Force

pril 1st marks the anniversary of the formation of the Royal Air Force on 1 April 1918, it is the oldest independent air force in the world. Following victory over the Central Powers in 1918 the RAF emerged as, at the time, the largest air force in the world. The RAF’s mission is to support the objectives of the British Ministry of Defence (MoD), which are to “provide the capabilities needed: to ensure the security and defence of the United Kingdom and overseas territories, including against terrorism; c to support the Government’s foreign policy objectives particularly in promoting international peace and security” The RAF describe its mission statement as “… to provide An agile, adaptable and capable Air Force that, person for person, is second to none, and that makes a decisive air power contribution in support of the UK Defence Mission”. The mission statement is supported by the RAF’s definition of air power, which guides its strategy. Air power is defined as “the ability to project power from the air and space to influence the behaviour of people or the course of events”

While the British were not the first to make use of heavier-than-air military aircraft, the RAF is the world’s oldest independent air force: that is, the first air force to become independent of army or navy control. It was founded on 1 April 1918, with headquarters located in the former Hotel Cecil, during the First World War, by the amalgamation of the Royal Flying Corps (RFC) and the Royal Naval Air Service (RNAS). At that time it was the largest air force in the world. After the war, the service was drastically cut and its inter-war years were relatively quiet, with the RAF taking responsibility for the control of Iraq and executing a number of minor actions in other parts of the British Empire. The RAF’s naval aviation branch, the Fleet Air Arm, was founded in 1924 but handed over to Admiralty control on 24 May 1939

Prior to, and During the Second World War The RAF underwent rapid expansion and Under the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan of December 1939, the air forces of British Commonwealth countries trained and formed “Article XV squadrons” for service with RAF formations. Many individual personnel from these countries, and exiles from occupied Europe, also served with RAF squadrons. By the end of the war the Royal Canadian Air Force had contributed more than 30 squadrons to serve in RAF formations, similarly, approximately a quarter of Bomber Command’s personnel were Canadian Additionally, the Royal Australian Air Force represented around nine percent of all RAF personnel who served in the European and Mediterranean theatres. The RAF alsdeveloped the doctrine of strategic bombing which led to the construction of long-range bombers and became its main bombing strategy.

During the Battle of Britain in 1940, the RAF (supplemented by 2 Fleet Air Arm Squadrons, Polish, Czecho-Slovak and other multinational pilots and ground personnel) defended the skies over Britain against the numerically superior German Luftwaffe. In what is perhaps the most prolonged and complicated air campaign in history, the Battle of Britain contributed significantly to the delay and subsequent indefinite postponement of Hitler’s plans for an invasion of the United Kingdom (Operation Sealion). In the House of Commons on 20 August, prompted by the ongoing efforts of the RAF, Prime Minister Winston Churchill eloquently made a speech to the nation, where he said “Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few”.

The largest RAF effort during the war was the strategic bombing campaign against Germany by Bomber Command. While RAF bombing of Germany began almost immediately upon the outbreak of war, under the leadership of Air Chief Marshal Harris, these attacks became increasingly devastating from 1942 onward as new technology and greater numbers of superior aircraft became available. The RAF adopted night-time area bombing on German cities such as Hamburg and Dresden, and developed precision bombing techniques for specific operations, such as the “Dambusters” raid by No. 617 Squadron, or the Amiens prison raid known as Operation Jericho.

Following the Second World War, the RAF underwent significant re-organisation, as technological advances in air warfare saw the arrival of jet fighters and bombers. During the early stages of the Cold War, one of the first major operations undertaken by the Royal Air Force was in 1948 and the Berlin Airlift, codenamed Operation Plainfire. Between 26 June and the lifting of the Russian blockade of the city on 2 May, the RAF provided 17% of the total supplies delivered during the event, using Avro Yorks, Douglas Dakotas flying to Gatow Airport and Short Sunderlands flying to Lake Havel. Before Britain developed its own nuclear weapons the RAF was provided with American nuclear weapons under Project E. However following the development of its own arsenal, the British Government elected on 16 February 1960 to share the country’s nuclear deterrent between the RAF and submarines of the Royal Navy, first deciding on 13 April to concentrate solely on the air force’s V bomber fleet. These were initially armed with nuclear gravity bombs, later being equipped with the Blue Steel missile. Following the development of the Royal Navy’s Polaris submarines, the strategic nuclear deterrent passed to the navy’s submarines on 30 June 1969. With the introduction of Polaris, the RAF’s strategic nuclear role was reduced to a tactical one, using WE.177 gravity bombs. This tactical role was continued by the V bombers into the 1980s and until 1998 by Tornado GR1s.

For much of the Cold War the primary role of the RAF was the defence of Western Europe against potential attack by the Soviet Union, with many squadrons based in West Germany. With the decline of the British Empire, global operations were scaled back, and RAF Far East Air Force was disbanded on 31 October 1971. However The RAF fought in many battles in the Cold War period. In June 1948 the RAF commenced Operation Firedog against Malayan terrorists during the Malayan Emergency Which continued for the next 12 years until 1960 with aircraft flying out of RAF Tengah and RAF Butterworth. The RAF played a minor role in the Korean War, with flying boats taking part. From 1953 to 1956 the RAF Avro Lincoln squadrons carried out anti-Mau Mau operations in Kenya using its base at RAF Eastleigh. The Suez Crisis in 1956 saw a large RAF role, with aircraft operating from RAF Akrotiri and RAF Nicosia on Cyprus and RAF Luqa and RAF Hal Far on Malta as part of Operation Musketeer The Konfrontasi against Indonesia in the early 1960s did see use of RAF aircraft, although thanks to deft diplomacy it never developed into a full-scale war. One of the largest actions undertaken by the RAF during the cold war was the air campaign during the 1982 Falklands War, in which the RAF operated alongside the Fleet Air Arm. During the war, RAF aircraft were deployed in the mid-Atlantic at RAF Ascension Island and a detachment from No. 1 Squadron was deployed with the Royal Navy, operating from the aircraft carrier HMS Hermes. RAF pilots also flew missions using the Royal Navy’s Sea Harriers in the air-to-air combat role and remained in the South Atlantic to provide air defence to the Falkland Islands, based at RAF Mount Pleasant.

Since the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union, the RAF’s focus has returned to delivering expeditionary air power and they have conducted Four major defence reviews: the 1990 Options for Change, the 1998 Strategic Defence Review, the 2003 Delivering Security in a Changing World and the 2010 Strategic Defence and Security Review. All four defence reviews have resulted in steady reductions in manpower and numbers of aircraft, especially combat aircraft such as fast-jets. As part of the latest 2010 Strategic Defence and Security Review, the BAE Systems Nimrod MRA4 maritime patrol aircraft was cancelled due to over spending and missing deadlines. Other reductions saw total RAF manpower reduced by 5,000 personnel to a trained strength of 33,000 and the early retirement of the Joint Force Harrier aircraft, the Harrier GR7/GR9. Since 1990 the RAF has been involved in several large-scale operations, including: the 1991 Gulf War the 1999 Kosovo War, the 2001 War in Afghanistan, the 2003 invasion and war in Iraq and the 2011 intervention in Libya.

In recent years fighter aircraft on Quick Reaction Alert (QRA) have been increasingly required to scramble in response to efforts made by the Russian Air Force to approach British airspace. As of 2014 the RAF’s QRA force had been scrambled almost thirty times in the last three years: eleven times during 2010, ten times during 2011 and eight times during 2012. RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire and RAF Lossiemouth in Moray both provide Quick Reaction Alert, or QRA, and scramble their fighter jets within minutes to meet or intercept aircraft which give cause for concern. Lossiemouth generally covers the northern sector, while Coningsby provides QRA in the south. In 2015, a final stand-down saw the end of more than 70 years of RAF Search and Rescue provision in the UK. The RAF and Royal Navy’s Westland Sea King fleets, after over 30 years of service, were retired. A civilian contractor, Bristow Helicopters, took over responsibility for UK Search and Rescue, under a Private Finance Initiative with newly purchased Sikorsky S-92 and AgustaWestland AW189 aircraft. The new contract means that all UK SAR coverage is now provided by Bristow aircraf

Since its formation, the RAF has taken a significant role in British military history and Today the Royal Air Force maintains an operational fleet of various types of aircraft, described by the RAF as being “leading-edge” in terms of technology. This largely consists of fixed-wing aircraft, including: fighter and strike aircraft, airborne early warning and control aircraft, ISTAR and SIGINT aircraft, aerial refueling aircraft and strategic and tactical transport aircraft. The majority of the RAF’s rotary-wing aircraft form part of the tri-service Joint Helicopter Command in support of ground forces. Most of the RAF’s aircraft and personnel are based in the UK, with many others serving on operations (principally over Iraq and Syria) or at long-established overseas bases (Ascension Island, Cyprus, Gibraltar, and the Falkland Islands). Although the RAF is the principal British air power arm, the Royal Navy’s Fleet Air Arm and the British Army’s Army Air Corps also deliver air power which is integrated into the maritime, littoral and land environments.

Posted in Events, Food

Edible book day

The International Edible Book Festival is an annual event usually held on or around April 1, which is also known as Edible Book Day. The global event has been celebrated since 2000 in various parts of the world, where “edible books” are created, displayed, and small events are held. The creations are photographed and submitted to http://www.books2eat.com and then consumed.Regular contributors to the site are groups from Australia, Brazil, India, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Mexico, Morocco, The Netherlands, Russia, and Hong Kong. The event was initiated by Judith A. Hoffberg and Béatrice Coron in 2000. The official website Books2Eat.com says that the International Edible Book Festival is held to commemorate “the birthday of French gastronome Jean-Anthelme Brillat-Savarin (1755-1826), famous for his book Physiologie du goût, a witty meditation on food,” though April Fools’ Day is also related as “the perfect day to eat your words and play with them as the ‘books’ are consumed on the day of the event.”(See: the Phantom Tollbooth, as regards eating ones words.)

In 2005, the festival was a joint initiative of forum book art and the Museum of Work, Hamburg, where pastry chefs made edible books. The “book art” was displayed, photographed, and then eaten. In 2005, the event was celebrated in Los Angeles, too, at the Los Angeles Book Arts Center as the Annual International Edible Book High/Low Tea on April 2, where artists were encouraged to create and consume tomes. A 2006 Indianapolis Monthly described the Indianapolis festival as a “quirky event” held on April Fools’ Day, “celebrating both food and literature.” Participants created foods resembling literary titles.Loganberry Books in Shaker Heights, Ohio has held an edible books festival every April since 2004 In 2013, awards were given for Most Literary, Most Appetizing, Most Book-like, and Most Creative.

A University of Florida library holds the event as the Edible Book Contest in April, in connection with National Library Week. There are two rules for the contest: Entries should be edible, and they must somehow relate to a book. Besides edible books, other entries include “edible book trucks” and “edible bookmarks”. The event kicks off with viewing of the entries, each of which has an information card describing the book title, author, and creator of the book art. The “books” are judged by a panel of judges and by public voting. Awards are given in categories like: Most Creative, Least Edible, Best Overall Fiction, Best Overall Non-Fiction, and Best Children’s Book. In 2010, the event is planned to be held on April 15 and the award categories are: Best Overall Entry, Best Book Theme, Best Pun, Best Adult Book, and Best Children’s Book.

One library in the USA celebrated Banned Books Week 2008 by holding an Edible Book contest. The event invited guests to consume cooked dishes and baked goods that resembled covers of banned books or reflected their content. A reporter sums up the aptly named event: “Our celebration took Sir Francis Bacon’s famous words quite literally: ‘Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and the other few to be chewed and digested.’” In 2011, the British newspaper Metro ran a story that they would begin producing the newspaper on an edible “Sweet tasting paper” claiming to bring customers “news in the best possible taste”. The newspaper later clarified this was an April Fools’ joke.

Posted in Uncategorized

April Fools’ day

April Fools’ Day (sometimes called All Fools’ Day) is celebrated every year on 1 April by playing practical jokes and spreading hoaxes. The jokes and their victims are called April fools. People playing April Fool jokes expose their prank by shouting April Fool. Some newspapers, magazines, and other published media report fake stories, which are usually explained the next day or below the news section in small letters. Although popular since the 19th century, the day is not a public holiday in any Country. The custom of setting aside a day for the playing of harmless pranks upon one’s neighbor may date back to the Roman festival of Hilaria, the Holi festival of India, and the Medieval Feast of Fools. In Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales the “Nun’s Priest’s Tale” is set Syn March bigan thritty dayes and two. Modern scholars believe that there is a copying error in the extant manuscripts and that Chaucer actually wrote, Syn March was gon. Thus the passage originally meant 32 days after March, i.e. 2 May, the anniversary of the engagement of King Richard II of England to Anne of Bohemia, which took place in 1381. Readers apparently misunderstood this line to mean “32 March”, i.e. 1 April. In Chaucer’s tale, the vain cock Chauntecleer is tricked by a fox. In 1508, French poet Eloy d’Amerval referred to a poisson d’avril (April fool, literally “April fish”), a possible reference to the holiday. In 1539, Flemish poet Eduard de Dene wrote of a nobleman who sent his servants on foolish errands on 1 April. In 1686, John Aubrey referred to the holiday as “Fooles holy day”, the first British reference. On 1 April 1698, several people were tricked into going to the Tower of London to “see the Lions washed”.

In the Middle Ages, New Year’s Day was celebrated on 25 March in most European towns. In some areas of France, New Year’s was a week-long holiday ending on 1 April.Some writers suggest that April Fools’ originated because those who celebrated on 1 January made fun of those who celebrated on other dates. The use of 1 January as New Year’s Day was common in France by the mid-16th century, and this date was adopted officially in 1564 by the Edict of Roussillon. In the Netherlands, the origin of April Fools’ Day is often attributed to the Dutch victory at Brielle in 1572, where the Spanish Duke Álvarez de Toledo was defeated. “Op 1 april verloor Alva zijn bril.” is a Dutch proverb, which can be translated to: “On the first of April, Alva lost his glasses.” . However This provides no explanation for the international celebration of April Fools’ Day. In the UK, an April Fool joke is revealed by shouting “April fool!” at the recipient, who becomes the “April fool”. A study in the 1950s, by folklorists Iona and Peter Opie, found that in the UK, and in countries whose traditions derived from the UK, the joking ceased at midday. A person playing a joke after midday is the “April fool” themselves.

In Scotland, April Fools’ Day was traditionally called ‘Huntigowk Day’, The name is a corruption of ‘Hunt the Gowk’, “gowk” being Scots for a cuckoo or a foolish person; alternative terms in Gaelic would be Là na Gocaireachd ‘gowking day’ or Là Ruith na Cuthaige ‘the day of running the cuckoo’. The traditional prank is to ask someone to deliver a sealed message that supposedly requests help of some sort. In fact, the message reads “Dinna laugh, dinna smile. Hunt the gowk another mile.” The recipient, upon reading it, will explain he can only help if he first contacts another person, and sends the victim to this next person with an identical message, with the same result. In England ‘fool’ is known by different names according to the part where it is celebrated. If you are fooled on this day you may be known as ‘noodle’, ‘gob’, ‘gobby’ or ‘noddy’.In Ireland it was traditional to entrust the victim with an “important letter” to be given to a named person. That person would then ask the victim to take it to someone else, and so on. The letter when finally opened contained the words “send the fool further”. In Poland, prima aprilis (“1 April” in Latin) is a day in which many jokes are told; various hoaxes are prepared by people, media (which sometimes cooperate to make the “information” more credible) and even public institutions. Serious activities are usually avoided.

This conviction is so strong that the anti-Turkish alliance with Leopold I signed on 1 April 1683, was backdated to 31 March.Danes, Finns, Icelanders, Norwegians and Swedes celebrate April Fools’ Day (aprilsnar in Danish; aprillipäivä in Finnish). Most news media outlets will publish exactly one false story on 1 April; for newspapers this will typically be a first-page article but not the top headline. In Italy, France, Belgium, and French-speaking areas of Switzerland and Canada, 1 April tradition is often known as “April fish” (poissons d’avril in French or pesce d’aprile in Italian). This includes attempting to attach a paper fish to the victim’s back without being noticed. Such fish feature prominently on many late 19th- to early 20th-century French April Fools’ Day postcards. In India, there have been numerous references to April Fools’ Day in both cinema such as the film April Fool, and popular literature and people are jovially associated with the date. In Romania, an April Fool joke is revealed by shouting “Pacaleala de 1 Aprilie!” at the recipient, who becomes the “April fool”, which means “April 1 hoax!”

As well as people playing pranks on one another on April Fools’ Day, elaborate practical jokes have appeared on radio and TV stations, newspapers, web sites, and have been performed by large corporations. In one famous prank from 1957, the BBC broadcast a film in their Panorama current affairs series purporting to show Swiss farmers picking freshly-grown spaghetti, in what they called the Swiss Spaghetti Harvest. The BBC were later flooded with requests to purchase a spaghetti plant, forcing them to declare the film a hoax on the news the next day.

in Spain and Hispanic America, the equivalent day is 28 December, which is also the “Day of the Holy Innocents”. A Christian celebration and religious holiday in its own right. During this day pranks are often played After which, the joker usually cries out, in some regions of Ibero-America: Inocente palomita que te dejaste engañar (“You innocent little dove that let yourself be fooled”). In Mexico, the phrase is ¡Inocente para siempre! which means “Innocent forever!”. In Argentina, the prankster says ¡Que la inocencia te valga!, which roughly translates as a piece of advice on not to be as gullible as the victim of the prank. In Spain, it is common to say just ¡Inocente! (which in Spanish can mean “Innocent!”, but also “Gullible!”). On the Spanish island of Minorca, Dia d’enganyar (“Fooling day”) is celebrated on 1 April because Menorca was a British possession during part of the 18th century. In Brazil, the “Dia da mentira” (“Day of the lie”) is also celebrated on 1 April