Life is full of surprises as we all are aware. One that I just observed is that Santa’s reindeer are apparently all females. It seems that all reindeer have antlers, but the males lose theirs by Christmas. The females do not. In fact, they keep them until they give birth in the spring. This means that Rudolph is a female as are Comet, Cupid, Donner, Blitzen etc. You would have thought that someone would have told Clement Moore when he wrote “The Night Before Christmas” that fact so he could have named the reindeer more appropriately. We are used to the names that he did use, but he could just as easily have written “On Connie, On Cutie, On Dottie, On Bridget, etc. If he had, it wouldn’t be a surprise to us now, and we could be learning something more productive like making and eating rhubarb pie as an excellent example!
Then there is the fact that some of the months of the year are named after Roman goddesses like May (Maia) and June (Juno). However, languages change.
For example, we no longer have actresses. Now everyone in that field is now an actor. Consequently, I have to wonder if all the goddesses are now mere gods. I have no idea why the names didn’t go the other way so that everyone would now be an actress or a goddess, but as I have indicated life is full of surprises. I just hope that Juno doesn’t get ticked off and tell Jupiter to send some lightning bolts our way! Gods as you know are easily ticked off, particularly the ancient ones.
Most of us like maple syrup, but things change there too. There used to be a Grade B maple syrup (all the rest were and are Grade A). Well just as now everyone gets a trophy for participating no matter whether you won or lost, people felt sorry for this poor Grade B syrup. Therefore, as part of the enlightenment that the world is now going through, it was given a bump up to Grade A – Very dark, strong taste. The other three Grade A maple syrups have more pleasing comments after the Grade A designation. Purportedly, all maple syrup has the same thickness, they just taste differently on the tongue. Thus, if your tongue likes a very dark, strong taste you have it made as you are a Grade A person like all the other maple syrup lovers. Who could ask for anything more!
In addition, I can’t let it go by without mentioning New Year’s resolutions. January is the time to do that. Well, actually I guess you are supposed to have them ready by the end of December so that they are ready to go on January 1. Just imagine, if you had them all determined on the last day of December and found that you had to wait until March (Mars) to use. Of course, that would have been when March was the first month until Julius Caesar stuck his nose into things and added two months to the year – simply because it made more sense to cover the earth’s tour around the sun. I must grudgingly admit that it was probably a good thing as just figure out how old you would be now if there were still only ten months in a year. On the other hand, there all the folks from way back who couldn’t be born on February 29 as there was no such date.
I guess that there will always be surprises. Good ones are the best though!
Barry Evans is a columnist for Villages-News.com