12 Offbeat Holidays to Celebrate in May

iStock
iStock

The days are getting longer and warmer, so we know you're in a partying mood. Here are a few ways to channel that energy during the month of May. 

1. MAY 1: NEW HOMEOWNERS DAY

One could argue that getting out of the rental game is a celebration in itself, but here's a holiday for brand new homeowners anyway. (A Risky Business-style dance party would be one good way to party with all that room.)

2. MAY 6: NO HOMEWORK DAY

We assume this applies to kids and adults alike.

3. MAY 11: EAT WHAT YOU WANT DAY

The best holidays encourage you to break some dietary rules and this one might be the best of all because it encourages you to break all of them.

4. MAY 13: NATIONAL BABYSITTERS DAY

Because let's be real, their job doesn't usually look this serene.

5. MAY 13: STAY UP ALL NIGHT NIGHT

It may not look as breathtaking as this, but staying up all night pretty much always leads to some great stories.

6. MAY 14: UNDERGROUND AMERICA DAY

Underground America day honors those who make their homes not just on Earth, but in it. It was invented by Malcolm Wells in 1974 and according to the architect, those who wish to celebrate can do so by doing things like riding the subway, burying treasure, eating root vegetables, or thinking about moles.

7. MAY 16: BIOGRAPHERS DAY

This offbeat holiday celebrates the anniversary of the meeting of James Boswell and Samuel Johnson in 1763, which resulted in a biography that many consider to be among the first of its kind in terms of style. (We love any holiday that you can participate in by just picking up a good book.)

8. MAY 16: MIMOSA DAY

What would brunch be without them?

9. MAY 18: INTERNATIONAL MUSEUMS DAY

On this day, the entire planet celebrates museums and all the amazing things they have to offer. We recommend checking for events and activities in your area: Hundreds of thousands of museums joined the party last year.

10. MAY 19: NATIONAL BIKE TO WORK DAY

We can't promise you'll look as put together and carefree as these two, but we can give you permission to skip the gym after completing your cycling commute.

11. MAY 19: NATIONAL SCOOTER DAY

For riders young and old.

12. MAY 25: NATIONAL TAP DANCE DAY

The perfect day to put on your dancing shoes.

Holidays found in Chase's Calendar of Events 2017. All photos courtesy of iStock unless otherwise noted.

If March 15 Is the Ides of March, What Does That Make March 16?

iStock.com/bycostello
iStock.com/bycostello

Everyone knows that the soothsayer in William Shakespeare's Julius Caesar was talking about March 15 when he warned the Roman emperor to "beware the Ides of March." We also all know Caesar's response: "Nah, I gotta head into the office that day." But if March 15 is the Ides of March, what does that make March 16?

At the time of Caesar's assassination, Romans were using the Julian calendar (introduced by Julius Caesar himself). This was a modified version of the original Roman calendar, and it is very similar to the one we use today (which is called the Gregorian calendar). A major difference, however, was how Romans talked about the days.

Each month had three important dates: the Kalends (first day of the month), the Ides (the middle of the month), and the Nones (ninth day before the Ides, which corresponded with the first phase of the Moon). Instead of counting up (i.e., March 10, March 11, March 12), Romans kept track by counting backwards and inclusively from the Kalends, Ides, or Nones. March 10 was the sixth day before the Ides of March, March 11 was the fifth day before the Ides of March, and so on.

Because it came after the Ides, March 16 would’ve been referred to in the context of April: "The 17th day before the Kalends of April." The abbreviated form of this was a.d. XVII Kal. Apr., with "a.d." standing for ante diem, meaning roughly "the day before."

So, had Julius Caesar been murdered on March 16, the soothsayer's ominous warning would have been, "Beware the 17th day before the Kalends of April." Doesn't have quite the same ring to it.

This story first ran in 2016.

Google Engineer Calculates Pi to 31 Trillion Digits, Sets New World Record

iStock.com/sovika
iStock.com/sovika

Pedantic math whizzes may insist that Pi Day should really be called Pi Approximation Day. The ratio of a circle's circumference to its diameter is commonly shortened to 3.14, but the sequence is actually infinite. Just in time for Pi Day on March 14 (3/14), a Google engineer has set a new record for the most pi digits ever calculated, Business Insider reports.

The previous record for the known digits of pi stood at 22.4 trillion digits. As Google announced on Pi Day 2019, Emma Haruka Iwao, a cloud developer advocate who's been with the company for three years, has added 9 million digits to that figure.

Working out of a lab in Osaka, Japan, she used Google's cloud-computing service to crunch 170 terabytes of data. For comparison, a single terabyte can hold 40 days worth of video. The process required 25 virtual machines running the y-cruncher program over four months.

According to Google, this marks the first time cloud computing has been used to calculate a record number of pi digits. Haruka Iwao has been working on cracking new pi sequences since she first downloaded software to calculate the number on her home computer at age 12. She's the third woman to break the pi record, and she's interested in discovering even more digits.

Anyone can download the full sequence onto their computer from Google. Memorizing all 31,415,926,535,897 digits may be impossible, but you can memorize at least the first 100 with this basic technique.

[h/t Business Insider]

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