Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Taking Stuff For Granted

I have had, in the last three days, so many blog ideas that I've had to pace myself. Of course, in the process of pacing, I've also forgotten. It's akin to that old adage, "If it was that good, I'll think of it again." I think I misquoted that.
But, I never write anything down. I've decided to put a few of my topic ideas in this post so that I remember them for the future:
  • I want to write a post figuring out why the USA is great.
  • Recently, Ed gave me the idea of comparing Obama to methadone and Reagan to heroine. I think that it has potential. I've simplified.
  • Several things recently have made me contemplate the "It's not my fault" syndrome and how it relates to the current economy and music.
But today, I ask the question, "Why do we take stuff for granted?" Do you take things for granted? Or do you question?
I think of myself as a questioner. I question everything I see. But today someone brought to my attention something that I don't know that I've ever questioned.
We deal with it every day.
If I ask you why February has 28 days most of the time and 29 days every four years except when the year is divisible by 100, blah blah blah...
I'm sure I'd get a remarkable number of answers.
But take that one step further and ask why the calendar is split up into 12 months?
To make things simple, let's say that a calendar year is the length of time it takes for the earth to complete one revolution around the sun. We'll say it's 365.25. That's not exact, but it works for my example.
Why do we have 12 months with different amount of days? Why can't we just have 10 months with 36.525 days in each month? What would we call the months? Gotta keep the good ones and adjust your birthday accordingly. I never like June and July because they both start the same. Let's leave out June. September, October, November and December all end in "ber" so we can remove one. For the lovers of Christmas, Halloween, and Thanksgiving we'll remove September. Our new months will be January, February, March, April, May, July, August, October, November and December. I'll put you in charge of adjusting your birthday.
My birthday will now be February 8th. Let me know if you need any help. I might be able to write a java script to automatically adjust for you.


  1. Base 12 really is a better system for arithmatic. 2,3,4,6 are all factors. In base 10 you've only got 2 & 5.

    But as long as you're going along this path, why not just go with binary? Makes sense from a season POV--Colduary & Warmuary starting on the equinoxes. So Colduary would start on what was formerly Sept. 22 (or 23), and end March 19.

  2. Yeah, but it's easier to divide by 10. You just move the decimal over. Bloggers are lazy people and don't like using calculators.

    But, I also didn't consider the factors of 12. That is an interesting argument for the decision to have 12 months. It allows you to have exactly 3 months for each season. Of course, the seasons don't start and stop on month boundaries. And it doesn't explain why we don't have 30.44 days per month (I had to use my calculator).

    I don't like binary, variety is the spice of life.

  3. Go here and the answers you seek shall be revealed. Except for that February question which no one has an explanation for...

  4. Going to that Gregorian Calendar link would most definitely ruin the fun. I want to simplify that as well. I am aiming at, "The Garlendar".