The Hidden Almanac for
Friday January 17th, 2014
Episode 55
Previous episode: 2014-01-15
Next episode: 2014-01-20


Today we remember a season of hats. We also remember the first assault by the Council of Sixteen, and the year of the ice. It is the Feast Day of St. Aaron, and in the garden, there are seeds.

Be Safe, and Stay Out of Trouble.


Welcome to the Hidden Almanac, I’m Reverend Mord.

Today is January 17th, 2014.

It was on this day in 1845 that the Duchess of Ellensburg appeared in public wearing a hat in the shape of a large shark. This kicked off a brief fashion for extraordinary sea-life headgear. For some months, salmon, sea urchin, and elephant seal hats were all the rage, a fashion that culminated when the Royal Mistress appeared at the opera wearing an oarfish hat that stretched eighteen feet behind her and required three handmaids to keep aloft.

And it was on this day that the Council of Sixteen mice launched their first assault against the squirrel oppressors, sending sappers to carefully chew through the base of many of the branches favored by squirrels. In the ensuring chaos of snapped branches and plummeting squirrels, one squirrel was injured and many more were deeply humiliated. The mice suffered no casualties, although several had to have splinters removed from their gums.

It was on this day in the Year of Boiling Earth that the ice broke in Echo Harbor, shattering upward as if struck from beneath by the tail of some enormous beast. Ice-fishing houses were destroyed and several prominent citizens were lost in the freezing water. “Bit early this year,” one fisherman observed. “It don’t usually do that until some time in March.”

Today is the Feast Day of St. Aaron the Ascetic, founder of several monasteries and author of “Beekeeping for the Monastic Life.” He is not known to have performed any miracles, but was generally hailed as a very nice guy and all-around decent human being.

In the garden today, we read from the Rare Earth Seed Catalog:

Black Rabbit: 105 days. This elegant sorghum produces a bumper crop of small, shiny black seeds. The stalks grow to seven feet and can be juiced and boiled for a high-quality sorghum syrup, if you’re into that. Adaptable, drought tolerant, and as perfect a grain as exists in this troubled world. Heirloom variety.

The Hidden Almanac is brought to you by Red Wombat Tea Company, purveyors of fine and inaccessible teas. Red Wombat --- “We Dig Tea.”

Also sponsored by the Royal Opera House. We’ve cleaned out all the bats and relocated them to ethically sourced caves provided by the mole people. Please come back.

That’s the Hidden Almanac for January 17th, 2014. Be safe, and stay out of trouble.


Out of Character

The Hidden Almanac is a production of Dark Canvas Media, written by Ursula Vernon and performed and produced by Kevin Sonney. Our theme music is Moon Valley and our exit music is Red in Black, both by Kosta T. You can hear more from Kosta T at the Free Music Archive. All other content is copyright 2013, Ursula Vernon.

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