The Hidden Almanac for
Friday March 20th, 2015
Episode 238
Previous episode: 2015-03-18
Next episode: 2015-03-23


Today we remember the ending of some gravity in Echo Harbor. It is also the day the Pizzastone Dog came to the public’s attention. It is the Feast Day of the Tinker, and in the garden, there are bulbs.

Be Safe, and Stay Out of Trouble.


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

Today is March 20th, 2015.

It was on this day in 1986 that the Pizzastone Pizza company unveiled a new mascot for their line of delivery pizzas. The mascot was a large dog, which was always saying “You gonna eat that?” For whatever reason—catchy jingle, excellent camera work, drugs in the water supply—the Pizzastone Dog caught the popular imagination. Multiple commercials were aired, T-shirts sold, and the dog’s owner reportedly became a multi-millionare overnight. Pizzastone reps scoured local pounds for dogs that could serve as stunt doubles. It was a peculiar moment in popular culture.

And it was on this day in the Year of Giants that the town of Echo Harbor suffered a brief cessation of gravity. Nothing over five pounds was affected, but the air filled with dead leaves, litter, rodents, and a number of small dogs. Other than making sure that the dogs were brought inside before they could drift away, the townsfolk seemed unperturbed. “It was about that time of year,” said one prominent citizen being interviewed. “We’ll take steps. It’ll be fine.” Whatever steps were taken, gravity re-exerted itself within the week. The bodies of eleven tourists were later found in a peat bog, covered in delicately tattooed equations describing the gravitational constant of the universe. This was probably a coincidence.

It is the Feast Day of the Tinker. This obscure folk deity is little worshiped today, but reportedly traveled from town to town, offering to repair small household goods. If given work, he would repair more than the just the pots and pans, curing diseases, restoring lost fortunes, and mending broken hearts. If insulted or threatened, bad luck would be inflicted upon the household for an entire year. Some folklorists track this figure to the ancient legends of hospitality and entertaining angles, while others believe that he was an actual historical figure.

In the garden, one of the hellebores has recovered from the unholy boot of the surveyors and is blooming blackly. It is the color of George, and it is wonderful. Meanwhile, bulbs are finally coming up. The grape hyacinth have survived the winter, as have the camassia. And then there are the other bulbs, which I distinctly recall planting, and which are lovely, with pale blue clusters of flowers. Unfortunately, the package that they came in was thrown away by a careless intern, and now I cannot seem to remember what they were called. Even in the joy of spring, there are small vexations.

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

Also brought to you by Semi-Colon Appreciation Day. Come on down to the Ancient Order of Linguists and celebrate our misunderstood friend, the semi-colon!

That’s the Hidden Almanac for March 20th, 2015. 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 through 2015, Ursula Vernon.

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