Wednesday, August 14, 2013

August Musings

Of late, the meanings of words have held my interest. Not long ago it was suggested to me, and to a room full of others at a Matrix Energetics Training,  for us to "Get interested."  "What interests you?" it was asked of us. "Become aware of what does, and explore it." What I've discovered is that this self-awareness tool is more fun than living the usual day-to-day. The other day I became completely fascinated that there were only two listless lobster in the lobster tank at a local Red Lobster Restaurant.

As a writer of a the eNewsletters for Rosehips Boutique & Skin Spa  I send monthly offers to those who have a birthday. Following my own interest in the definition of a month's name,  I did some internet digging.  I decided not to write about the fact that August, the eighth month in the  Julian Calendar,  remained the eighth month in the Gregorian calendar, the solar based one we have today. Or that August's name was "sextilis" in the 10 month Roman calender, being the 6th month in that time measurement device. Nor did I write that August was named August to honor Augustus, the First Emperor of the Roman Empire. Wikipedia has all of that. The historical background of the modern calendar as we know it, and what it went through to satisfy emperors and rulers, is twisted and convoluted, kind of like Caligula, the 3rd Emperor of the Roman Empire, who got himself assassinated.  Instead of all of that, this is what I passed along to my newsletter peeps. Something light.

August, according to  has two definitions. Here is the first one, followed by my commentary:

Def. 1
Au·gust  (ôgst)n. Abbr. Aug. The eighth month of the year in the Gregorian calendar.

The Gregorian calendar, the solar calendar now in general use, was initialized  in October 1582 to correct an "error" in the Julian calendar. Gregory XIII, in charge at the time,  essentially erased 10 days, making Oct 5 fast forward to  Oct 15. (Think of all of those missed birthdays!)  The solar based Gregorian calendar further decreed that  centenary years divisible by 400 would add one day, occurring once every four years. These Leap Years would be 366 days, not the usual 365.

How those years with an extra day became known as "Leap Years" is a mystery to me. They don’t leap! They grind on an extra day. I would also like to know why February, shortest month with only 28 days, was given a  February 29. Was it an act of charity considering that all eleven other months had 30 or 31 days? Why is February stiffed in the first place? Why didn't March start a day later? And January, with its 31 days, could have spared one, ending on the 30th instead of the 31st. What makes these months so special? This intercalary day, February 29th,  was inserted in the calendar "to harmonize it with the solar year."  Yep. That’s what I read. Let's face it. It's discordant to have all months with 30 or 31 days, except for the runt of the litter,  February. What did Gregory XIII have against this month in the first place? It doesn't make sense, plus its unfair.

Perhaps this sentiment explains why independent minded Great Britain and the American colonies  held out until 1752 to adopt the Gregorian calendar. That’s 170 years of discordant history.

According to
Def. 2
au·gust  (ô-gst)
1. Inspiring awe or admiration; majestic: the august presence of the monarch.  Synonym: grand.
2. Venerable for reasons of age or high rank.

"Feeling good about being born in August?" I asked my newsletter peeps.  I felt it best to focus on how awe inspiring August-born individuals are. The ones born in the sign of Leo would certainly enjoy that!

Truthfully, what I've experienced about August born friends and family is that they are either full of themselves or noble. Both tendencies I enjoy. Somehow I just cannot dislike or resent anyone born in August. They fascinate me.

Happy August! Happy Birthday!

Owner & Aesthetician

Rosehips Skincare Studio
410 Morson St.
Raleigh, NC 27601

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