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5 Quirky Holidays in November

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by Jennifer Muirhead (subscribe)
I am learning all the time. The tombstone will be my diploma. ~ Eartha Kitt
Published October 29th 2017
Days to learn, celebrate and enjoy
November 1 - World Vegan Day

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A vegan burrito bowl.

World Vegan Day was established in 1994 by Louise Wallis, the chair of the Vegan Society in the United Kingdom, in honour of the 50th anniversary of the coining of the term "vegan". They define "veganism" as "...a way of living that seeks to exclude, as far as possible and practicable, all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing and any other purpose." It's more than a diet, it also means avoiding other animal-based products such as wool, leather and things like makeup and bathroom products which contain animal ingredients or are tested on animals and not supporting the use of animals for entertainment (eg. in circuses or racing).

Various vegan groups around the world celebrate with events like vegan dinners as fundraisers. If there isn't anything like that happening near you, you could always celebrate by enjoying a vegan meal at home like a bowl of tasty vegan mac and 'cheese'.

November 6- National Saxophone Day

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A busker playing the saxophone. Image from Morguefile by user Hotblack.

National Saxophone Day is the birthday of Adolphe Sax, who invented the saxophone in 1846. You could celebrate by listening to some music by one of the greats, like Charlie Parker, or by playing the sax yourself if you know how.

November 15- Clean Out Your Fridge Day

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Image from Morguefile by user cheriedurbin.

Nobody really likes cleaning out the fridge, but if you keep putting it off it gets so much worse. Established by Whirlpool Appliances in 1999, National Clean Out Your Fridge Day serves as a reminder to get in there and get rid of anything that's expired before it starts to develop sentience and insist on squatter's rights to your fridge. Wipe down the shelves and organise the food so you can see at a glance what's in there. You'll thank yourself later.

November 19- International Men's Day

men hugging, international men's day, men's day, quirky holidays in November
Image from Morguefile by user AndreaOjeda

For all the men who flood social media every year on International Women's Day (March 8) demanding to know why there isn't an International Men's Day, here you go, there is. Established in 1992, International Men's Day focuses on improving men's health, highlighting positive male role models and improving gender relations.

The theme for 2017 is "Celebrate Men and Boys". You could celebrate by holding a fundraiser (like a pot luck or a barbecue) to raise money for a cause like prostate cancer research, suicide prevention or One Punch Can Kill.

November 24- All Our Uncles Are Monkeys Day (AKA Evolution Day)

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A reconstruction of Lucy at the Smithsonian Museum, via Wikipedia by user Mpinedag - CC BY-SA 3.0.

November 24th is the anniversary of the publication in 1859 of Darwin's book On the Origin of Species , as well as the anniversary of the discovery in 1974 of "Lucy", the skeleton of a female Australopithecus afarensis (an early hominid).

You could celebrate the occasion by reading a book (maybe Darwin's, or something more recent like The Blind Watchmaker by Richard Dawkins or Undeniable by Bill Nye) or watching a documentary about evolution, or maybe pay a visit to a natural history museum.
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