National Whatever Day: April 1st

By: Allison Ricke Email
By: Allison Ricke Email

Today's National Whatever Day has much more to celebrate than just April Fools! Today's National Whatever Days include April Fools' Day, Edible Book Day, Fossil Fools Day, International Fun at Work Day and International Tatting Day. Five, count 'em, five holidays to celebrate today!

April Fools' Day
April Fools’ Day is celebrated in the Western world on the 1st of April of every year. Sometimes referred to as All Fools’ Day, April 1st is not a legal holiday, but is widely recognized and celebrated as a day which tolerates practical jokes and being silly. The day is marked by the commission of good humored or funny jokes, hoaxes and other practical jokes of varying sophistication on friends, family members, teachers, neighbors, work associates, etc.

Traditionally, in some countries such as New Zealand, the UK, Australia, and South Africa, the jokes only last until noon, and someone who plays a trick after noon is called an “April Fool”. It is for this reason that newspapers in the U.K. that run a front page April fool only do so on the first (morning) edition. Elsewhere, such as in France, Ireland, Italy, South Korea, Japan, Russia, The Netherlands, Germany, Brazil, Canada, and the U.S., the jokes last all day. The earliest recorded association between 1st April and foolishness can be found in Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales (1392). Many writers suggest that the restoration of the 1st of January as New Year’s Day in the 16th century was responsible for the creation of the holiday, but this theory does not explain earlier references.

Edible Book Day
The International Edible Book Festival, also known as Edible Book Day, is celebrated on or around April 1st of each year. 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 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 www.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.” (cf. The Phantom Tollbooth, as regards eating ones words.)

The Participation rules per the official site are:
---The event must be held on April 1 or around it

---“All edible books must be ‘bookish’ through the integration of text, literary inspiration or, quite simply, the form.”

---“Organizations or individual participants must register with the festival’s organization … and see to it that the event is immortalized on the international festival website.”

Fossil Fools Day
Fossil Fools Day is an environmental demonstration day that occurs on April 1st of each year. As it sounds, the name is a play on the term fossil fuels and April Fools’ Day.

Fossil Fools Day began in 2004 with coordinated actions across the United States and Canada. Subsequent Fossil Fools Days have been held in many cities around the world, and are generally organized by one or more environmental organizations with funding from Energy Action Coalition and Rising Tide. Events are held in many cities around the world. These events oppose energy derived from fossil fuels, promote education about alternative sources of energy, encourage support for climate justice, strong legislation, corporate responsibility and a clean renewable energy future.

International Fun at Work Day
A simple search for ‘fun at work’ from any search engine will provide you with dedicated websites, videos and how-to advise. Regardless of the origin to quote a famous movie, “All work and no play, makes Johnny a dull boy.”

International Tatting Day
We're not talking about tattooing other countries onto people, we're actually talking about "tatting." Tatting is a technique for handcrafting a particularly durable lace constructed by a series of knots and loops. Tatting can be used to make lace edging as well as doilies, collars, and other decorative pieces. The lace is formed by a pattern of rings and chains formed from a series of cow hitch, or half-hitch knots, called double stitches (ds), over a core thread. Gaps can be left between the stitches to form picots, which are used for practical construction as well as decorative effect.

Tatting dates to the early 19th century. The term for tatting in most European languages is derived from French frivolité, which refers to the purely decorative nature of the textiles produced by this technique. The technique was developed to imitate point lace.

So many cool things going on today: pull a prank on someone, have fun at work and go get a tattoo if that's more like your kind of tatting!


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