Eye on the Sky

It’s “Tuesday Newsday,” the day when Dean Burnetti Law brings you news of recalls, legal or political events, or other important happenings…  

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Most of us already know how China recently made history last Wednesday when their Chang’e 4 landed on the moon, making China the third country to ever land a probe on the moon, and then they made an even greater imprint in the pages of history books when their probe visited the dark side of the moon, the first ever viewing of its kind.  That headline brought about a renewed interest in many, worldwide, in all things space.

This past week, last Thursday night, the Quadrantid meteor shower was visible at a rate of approximately 25 meteors per hour.  We looked and looked, but we missed seeing even one.

For those who don’t really know what a meteor is, a meteor, a meteoroid, a meteorite, and an asteroid are simply space rocks, with the largest being asteroids.  Over time, asteroids break down into smaller rocks called meteoroids. When a meteoroid enters the Earth’s atmosphere and vaporizes, it is called a meteor, or a “shooting star.”  As the meteor enters our atmosphere, it heats up, causing the air around it to glow with a streak of light or a “tail.”

On the rare occasion that a meteor enters our atmosphere and reaches the Earth’s surface without burning up, it’s called a meteorite.  By the time they land on Earth, meteorites typically range in size from tiny pebbles to boulders.

We see meteor showers, or shooting stars, when the Earth travels though clouds of particles left by asteroids or comets.

A meteor shower originates from a single point in the sky known as the “radiant.”  Meteors seen near the radiant will appear as short streaks in the sky. However, meteors seen further from the radiant produce longer streaks or tails.

Meteor showers are named for the constellation in which their radiant lies at the time of shower maximum. Because the Earth’s orbit is virtually the same each year, these showers are predictable.

Meteors, or shooting stars, are best seen on a clear, dark night during a new Moon, and their best visibility is during the latest part of the night past midnight until dawn, when the meteor shower radiant comes above the horizon.

Have we piqued your nighttime sky interest yet?  Don’t worry, the next meteor shower is the Lyrid Shower to take place when the Earth passes through the Thatcher comet on April 22nd.  Unfortunately, this one will be small, producing an average of only 10 or so meteors per hour near dawn.  If you can hold out until August 11th through 13th, you can see the Perseid Meteor Shower associated with the Swift-Tuttle comet, and you can expect to see up to 50 shooting stars per hour near the dawn hours.  Of course, even though there are a dozen meteor showers per year, you’ll have to wait until December 13th and 14th for the really big one known as the Geminid shower which produces up to 75 shooting stars per hour all night long!

Can’t wait for something this cool?  Have no fear!  In just a few short days, on the night of January 20th, you can step outside and see a total lunar eclipse!

Actually, this one will be a history-maker, too, as it will be a Total Supermoon Eclipse, which will be the first since the year 2000!  In fact, it won’t happen again until the year 2058!  This particular eclipse is so special because the entirety of the North and South American continents will get to experience the full show of the eclipse. This includes the penumbral, partial, and total stages from everywhere in the Americas!

While we’ve probably all seen lunar eclipses before, the thing that makes this one so special is that we will have the right alignment between the earth, sun, and moon.  This will cause a penumbral eclipse to lead to a partial eclipse, and then the partial eclipse will become a total eclipse. Once the Moon is located entirely within the Earth’s shadow, it will be one of the most spectacular recurring sights to sky watchers everywhere on the night side of the Earth.

During a total lunar eclipse, the Moon may be outshone by the planets Venus, Jupiter, Mars or Saturn, as well as by the bright stars Sirius, Canopus, Alpha Centauri, and Arcturus.

While, during this eclipse, the Moon itself will still be visible as the sunlight filters through Earth’s atmosphere falls on the lunar surface, but the Moon will appear to be red because of the same effects that turn the sky blue during the day.  This is known as a Blood Moon. WOW!

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Looked Drunk to Me

It’s Monday. Welcome to a new week. Today is the day for “Monday Ministry.” Did you know that Attorney Dean Burnetti went to seminary before he was called to the legal field?  The following is a devotion given to you by Dean…

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Luke 6:36-37  “You must be compassionate, just as your Father is compassionate. Do not judge others, and you will not be judged…”

judgeI was sitting in Chili’s just last night. It was so busy that we made a run for the bar stools. I am getting used to it… No wait, no children, faster service, and multiple TV’s to watch.

About four stools down to my left was another old guy like me.  He was sipping on a beer. All of a sudden, he started to get loud. His speech sounded slurred as he tried to talk to someone across the bar.

All I could think of was to cut him off. He was obviously drunker than Old Man Cootie Brown. After a while, I was ready to complain to the bartender and warn her not to serve him any more.

Then they brought Old Cootie his food. The young girl sitting next to him stood and started to cut up his food. It turned out to be his daughter. He told the guy across the bar he couldn’t use his hands anymore. As it turned out, the guy was a stroke victim and was impaired. He wasn’t drunk at all.

I felt like a fool.

Jesus tells us to not judge, but to rather be compassionate and look at the world around us with concern and care.

Today, forgive me, Lord, for my ridicule and judgement. Give me the chance to see through the eyes of Christ, and to minister and mentor to the world around me.

We must look beyond appearance to see another’s real need and circumstance.

Have a blessed day.

~Dean Burnetti

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Whichever You Are

Happy Friday, Friends!  Whether you like to play your Fridays low key…

…Or like to live it up….…Enjoy your weekend!

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The Dream That Almost Wasn’t

Happy Throwback Thursday, friends!  In searching for an exciting Throwback to use today, we encountered an old newspaper headline that strikes close to home for our own Dean Burnetti.  Please watch your step as you hop on board the Retro Bus, and hold on as we travel back to nearly a century ago, 1921.

To give a little backstory as we travel, we’re looking at Italy.  Italians who emigrated to America from 1890 onward became a part of what is known as the New Immigration.  The New Immigration was the third and largest wave of immigration from Europe and consisted primarily of Italians, Slavs, and Jews. The previous Old Immigration, which took place through the 1800s, consisted mostly of Irish, British, Germans, and Scandinavians.

Between 1900 and 1915, over 3-million immigrants left Italy and headed to America, and while this number represented all regions of Italy, the majority of these folks came from the regions in Southern Italy.  Over 2-million of these Italian immigrants were either farm laborers or other types of laborers. Most of them had little to no experience in the mining or textile industries, with the exception of those who had worked in the textile factories in Piedmont and Tuscany or the mines in Umbria and Sicily.

The main reason so many Italians wanted to leave for America was poverty and political hardship.  For most Italians, agriculture was their livelihood, however, many farmers and their family lived in harsh conditions, such as one-room huts.  Italian Landlords ruled the country.  They charged high rents and paid low wages.

In Italy, farm workers who toiled year-round receive between 16 and 30 cents per day!  A carpenter there would receive from 30 cents to $1.40 a day!  In America, a carpenter could expect to receive $3.11 a day – an average which was more than double the top wage in Italy.

Furthermore, in 19th century Italy, an agricultural disease known as phylloxera destroyed many of the grape vines used to produce wine.  This, in turn caused fruit and grain prices to plummet, which caused a drop in the market, thus making the Untied States even more attractive to hungry farmers.

And as if all that weren’t bad enough, beginning in the 1870s, the Italian government took measures to repress political views such as anarchy and socialism. This made for a very depressing life.

And here, we’ve reached the first stop on the way to our destination: 1905.  In 1905, Dean Burnetti’s father’s father was a teenage boy living in Central Southern Italy.  His family of farm laborers had moved around various parts of Italy seeking work, and were finding little to none.  His parents received word from their daughter – who had moved to America with her husband – that a cotton plantation in Arkansas was willing to hire them.  Their son-in-law sent money (which probably came from his employer), and in late 1905, Dean’s great-grandparents and four of their children landed at Ellis Island.  (They left none too soon, because that same year, 323,000 Italians contracted malaria, and thousands died!)

The following year, Dean’s grandfather’s sister met a boy, who was also a farmer from Italy, and married him.  The family eventually took other farming jobs and landed in Mississippi by 1910.

Back in Italy in 1910, a girl kissed her parents and six siblings goodbye as she left to join her brother in America – the same boy who married Dean’s grandfather’s sister.  She arrived in Philadelphia and the following year, married Dean’s grandfather, and they gave birth to Dean’s father in 1922.

Now, before you go envisioning a romantic trip across the ocean like the Titanic (before the iceberg), don’t.  Many of these hopeful Italians, looking forward to a future, were already clutching their bellies and trying to ignore the pain caused by hunger when the ships to take them to America arrived.

Steamship agents booked as many passengers as they could to make the trip a financial success.  This meant that many people were forced to sleep on deck in the sun, wind, snow, rain, and dampness of the sea or were squeezed in the bottom of the ship like human cargo.  Food and water supplies were limited, and many passengers, in their desperation, forced themselves into the ship’s kitchen, pushing aside whoever stood in their way to grab whatever they could find to feed their children and themselves.

The lucky found raw potatoes, carrots, rice, oats, or flour, but without a way to cook such food, they were forced to eat them raw.  Also, if crew members caught them stealing food, they beat the thieves without mercy.

The ships were menageries of confusion and disorder.  Parents witnessed their children right in front of them.  The stench of infection, human waste, and unbathed bodies was overpowering.  Diarrhea was prominent among the passengers, and their meager belongings were often stolen by crewmen of the ships.

The lack of good food, clean water, and sanitary conditions became a breeding ground for cholera and death.  As the weak died, the ships’ crews took their belongings, then weighed down their bodies and tossed them into the sea.  In desperation to survive, the weary immigrants remained focused on the American Dream.

Once they finally reached land, the immigrants, armed with a new prospect of hope, were forced to remain on board until a health officer could examine the ship’s bill of health.  The officer was charged with ensuring that neither the crew or the passengers were infected with any contagious disease.

Upon arrival, many immigrants were so covered with vermin that they were forced into a bath of hot water and literally scrubbed from head to toe.  Some lucky passengers had friends or relatives waiting for them.

Though many passengers arrived penniless, some with meager savings or anything of value to offer soon fell prey to the waterfront con men.   The uneducated, non-English speaking newcomers, unfamiliar with the ways of the New World, became easy prey for these professional swindlers.

So, now that we’re done with out backstory, let’s park the Retro Bus on this date 98 years ago, January 3, 1921, when Italy halted the issuing of passports to those emigrating to the United States!

This Throwback is entitled “The Dream That Almost Wasn’t.”  If Dean’s great-grandparents had been exposed to the plagues of malaria that were prevalent the year they left Italy, Dean might not be here today.  If the greedy steamship agents would have booked fewer people per ship, they might have not been able to afford to continue transporting people.  If the diseases onboard the ships that transported both of Dean’s grandparents had prevailed, or if either of the grandparents had gotten sick, Dean might not be here today.  If Dean’s grandfather’s sister or his grandmother’s brother, each of which married someone in American and sent for someone else in the family, had succumbed to any of these hardships, Dean might not be here today.  But luckily, God had better things in mind for his ancestors, and the people of Florida now have Dean to help them with their legal needs.  Halleluiah!

That’s it for today, friends.  Please watch your step as you depart the Retro Bus, and we’ll see you again next week!

#TBT

#ThrowbackThursday

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The Dreaded Brother-in-Law

Wednesday is the day YOU get to “Ask an Attorney.”  Just leave your question in the comments below, and if your question is selected, it will be answered on an upcoming Wednesday by one of our attorneys at Dean Burnetti Law.

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Quentin G. from Zephyrhills asks, “Over the holidays, my wife’s sister, brother-in-law, and their kids came for a 5-day visit.  It’s no secret that no one in the family cares much for the brother-in-law.  He drinks too much, he doesn’t keep a job, he’s crude and boorish, and not especially nice to his wife and kids.  While they were here, my sister-in-law confided in my wife that she had filed for divorce and that he would be served with papers after the new year.  He had no clue it was coming.  Now for my dilemma:  While they were here, he, after a few of beers, disappeared.  We all thought he was in the back bedroom sleeping it off, but the next thing we knew, we heard a loud crash.  He had stumbled into my back-patio glass door, the glass shattered, and he fell onto the cement and somehow ended up in my pool!  Blood was everywhere, and once I fished him out of the pool and got him to the hospital, he required over 40 stitches in his scalp and elbow, and on top of the numerous bruises, he had a mild concussion!  He’s a litigious man and was already talking about suing me while we were in the E.R., but now that my sister-in-law is having him served with divorce papers this week, I’m certain that he’ll come after me with both barrels.  I have two kids to put through college soon, and I can’t afford an attorney on top of whatever I might have to pay my brother-in-law!  How can I protect myself from this legal nightmare?”

Happy New Year, Quentin.  I’m sure sorry about the tough spot you’re in.  As you know, Dean Burnetti Law handles Plaintiffs’ personal injury cases, and if you were named in a lawsuit by your brother-in-law, you would be the Defendant.  However, I’ll see if I can put myself in your shoes for a moment.  You didn’t say whether you own or rent your home.  If you own (or are buying) your house, your homeowner’s insurance will provide you with legal representation if he does anything.  If you rent and have renter’s insurance, they, too, may provide representation if they cover injuries in the home.  Your landlord, however, should have homeowner’s insurance, and he or she would be named as the Defendant.  Furthermore, as far as “being sued,” most personal injury attorneys do not come out of the gate filing a lawsuit, but start slowly with what is called a “demand letter.”  A demand letter lists the medical damages, lost wages, future lost wage speculation, future medical care needs, if any, etc., and places a “price” on these, then asks the responsible party to pay.  But prior to a demand letter, the attorney would write a letter of representation to you which would basically ask you to pass the letter along to either your homeowner’s insurance company or to your landlord for him/her to pass on to their insurance company.  Lawsuits are expensive, so many attorneys don’t like to let cases go that far if they can settle out of court.  Also, once a complaint is filed with the court (in the cases where a demand letter didn’t settle things), there is something called “discovery” which is exchanged between the parties.  This will include things such as “interrogatories” (where up to 30 questions are asked in writing), which will allow your attorney (provided by the insurance company) to help you explain how much your brother-in-law was drinking prior to the accident.  There would also be depositions taken of yourself and your family who was present and saw how much he drank.  His drinking would likely play a large part in the percentage of his own culpability in the incident.  It’s also possible that it could be found that the glass or door manufacturer was liable, because glass doors are not meant to shatter so easily.  It may be determined that the doors were defective, and this might be a defective product case rather than a personal injury case.  If your brother-in-law finds an attorney that will take his case, they will deal directly with the attorney that your insurance company provides you, and together, they will decide what happens next.  It could be that your insurance company pays out immediately, and you may never even hear anything else about it.  So, for now, put your fears to rest because the worst that can happen at the moment is that you may get a letter in the mail.

Best wishes!

~Dean Burnetti

[If you have a question for one of our attorneys, please write it in the comments below, and be sure to check back soon for a response.]

(The information contained herein is for informational purposes only, and does not constitute legal advice.)

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Welcome!

Happy New Year, friends!  And welcome to 2019!  To kick off the new year, we looked up some interesting trivia about new years past.  While we’re not sure if these are all accurate, they are pretty interesting, and they’re probably true… because the internet doesn’t lie, right?  Let’s see how many of these we can debunk…

Local Celebrations in the United States:

In New York, December sees an increase in the sale of adult diapers, because many people actually wear them while celebrating New Year at Time Square due to the lack of toilets as well as the difficulty in moving through the crowd to seek a restroom (as well as losing their spot).   [We’ve heard this one many times before from people who live or have lived in or near NYC, so we have no doubt that it’s actually true.]

Instead of lowering a giant ball of lights on New Year’s Eve, Brasstown, North Carolina lowers a possum in an event known as “The Possum Drop.” [1]

The City of Tallapoosa, Georgia also holds an annual New Year’s Possum Drop. [2] [We had doubts, but Wikipedia assures us that these Possum Drop events are real!  This writer believes PETA might have a thing or two to say about this!]

Since 2008, the city of Mobile, Alabama spends the night of December 31st dropping a 12-foot-tall lighted mechanical Moon Pie to celebrate the coming of the New Year. [Yep, their city’s website announces the Moon Pie Drop schedule!  Who knew?]

New Years Facts Throughout History:

Until 2006, the Space Shuttle never flew on New Year’s Day or eve because its computers couldn’t handle a year rollover. [This one is true.  Multiple news articles from February 2007 discuss NASA solving the YERO (Year End Rollover) problem.]

Beethoven’s 9th Symphony was introduced to Japan on June 1, 1918, by German POWs in WWI (who played it for them), and it is now a national tradition to perform it every New Year’s in Japan.  It’s also now known as “Daiku” (No. 9) to them.  [Numerous recordings on YouTube assure us that this is indeed true.]

December 6th marks the Feast Day of St. Nicholas of Myra; a Turkish bishop who became the patron saint of Moscow and Santa to the world. Due to the suppression of religion during the Soviet regime, St. Nicholas was replaced by Ded Moroz or Grandfather Frost, the Russian Spirit of Winter who brought gifts on New Year’s and placed them under the “New Year tree.”  [This one is mentioned in enough different news articles that we believe this to be true.]

The ancient Hawaiian New Year was four months long, war was forbidden, people stopped working, and the people spent time dancing, feasting and having a good time. [Again, Wikipedia comes through for us and assures us that this one is true.  The Makahiki season is the ancient Hawaiian New Year festival, in honor of the god Lono of the Hawaiian religion. Today, the Aloha Festivals (originally Aloha Week) celebrate the Makahiki tradition.]

On New Year’s Day in 1976, a man named Danny Finegood changed the Hollywood sign to “Hollyweed” as a college prank in order to celebrate the decriminalization of marijuana.  He received an “A” for his efforts! [Sometimes, truth is stranger than fiction.  We had our doubts about this and were surprised to find out that we were wrong.  This indeed happened, and several old new articles validate it!]

Prior to 1753, Britain and its possessions began the New Year on March 25th (Annunciation Day). Furthermore, 1752 only lasted nine months, as the dates from January 1st to March 24th (as well as September 3rd to 13th) were skipped in order for the year of 1753 to begin on January 1st like in other countries.  [This is indeed a fact.  As a matter of fact, we even touched on this in our New Years’ Eve Throwback Thursday post where we referenced the start of the Gregorian calendar.]

After the French Revolution, France briefly started a new calendar method based on a decimal system.  It was called the French Republican Calendar and included 10 day long weeks, 10 hour long days, 100 minute long hours, and 100 second long minutes.  It even started at Year 1. [Wikipedia, yet again, promises that this actually happened.  It was used by the French government for about 12 years from late 1793 to 1805, and for 18 days by the Paris Commune in 1871. Part of the purpose of its design was to remove all religious and royalist influences from the calendar, and was part of a larger attempt at decimalization in France.  Wow.]

In 2010, a “Black Widow” suicide bomber planned a terrorist attack in central Moscow on New Year’s Eve.  The plan was thwarted when a “Happy New Year” spam message from her cell phone carrier triggered her suicide belt just hours before the planned attack, killing her but nobody else.  [While we may be wrong, we’re calling FALSE here.  The only “evidence” we can find of this report (in our admittedly brief search) is in the British tabloid “The Telegraph” (which is their equivalent of our “National Enquire”).]

Around the World:

In an effort to reduce drunk driving, every New Year’s Eve, Triple A (or AAA) will tow your car and give you a lift home for free, even if you’re not a member!  [Once again, we had our doubts about this one, but were pleasantly surprised to learn from Triple A’s own website that this is indeed true!  While it may not be available in all states, many states actually honor the program for several days at the end of December, not just New Year’s Eve.  Next year, check their website for their schedule to see if you can utilize this generous service.]

There is a music festival every New Year’s Eve in Antarctica called Ice Stock.  [As crazy as it seems, this one’s actually true, too!  Who knew?]

Thailand celebrates their traditional New Year’s Day with a state-sponsored multiple day water fight. [It’s true!  The holiday, known as Songkran, is actually known for its water festival.  Major streets are closed to traffic, and are used as arenas for water fights!  Celebrants, both young and old, participate in this tradition by splashing water on each other.]

Russians celebrate the New Year twice, once on January 1st and then again on January 14th. [Yes, this one’s true, too!  The New Year by the Julian calendar is still informally observed, and the tradition of celebrating the coming of the New Year twice is widely enjoyed.  January 1st is the “New” New Year, and January 14th is the “Old” New Year.  While the Old New Year is not usually as festive as the New New Year, it’s still commemorated by many as a nostalgic family holiday ending the New Year holiday cycle (which includes the Eastern Orthodox Christmas on January 7th).  It’s tradition includes large meals, singing, and celebratory drinking.]

On New Year’s Day in Akita, Japan there is a tradition where men dress as mountain demons, get drunk, and terrorize children for being lazy or disobeying their parents. [Oddly enough, this one’s true, too!  The “demons” known as Namahages enter people’s homes and threatens to carry off the bad kids in the house.  To calm the Namahages, the head of the house will usually offer the deities a traditional meal (usually rich cakes) and sake. This kind gesture will then be returned by the Namahage with prayers for the family’s good health and fortune for the coming year.]

Every December 25th, a town in Peru celebrates the closing of the old year by settling grudges with fistfights. Then everyone goes drinking together, ready to start the New Year with a clean slate. [Ouch!  Yep, this one’s true, too.  “Takanakuy” (which is Quechua for “to hit each other”) is an annual established practice of fighting fellow community members held on December 25th, by the inhabitants of Chumbivilcas Province, near Cuzco in Peru.  The festival consists of dancing and of individuals (men, women, and children included) fighting each other to settle old conflicts.  While this writer can appreciate the symbolism here, methinks penning a letter to the offensive party might be preferred.  Or perhaps relocating to a different town.]

Hogmanay is the term for New Year’s Eve in Scotland. In a place called Stonehaven, it is honored through fireballs swinging and first-footing into a friend or neighbor’s threshold.  [Yes, this is true, too.  The origins of Hogmanay are unclear, but it may be derived from Norse and Gaelic observances. Customs vary throughout Scotland, and usually include gift-giving and visiting the homes of friends and neighbors, with special attention given to the first-foot, the first guest of the new year.]

There is a 1000-year-long song in the making known as “Longplayer.” The song began on Jan. 1, 2000 and will continue until Dec. 31, 2999, where it will come back to the starting point of the song and begin again.  [Once again, truth being stranger than fiction wins out.  Conceived and composed by Jem Finer, this song was originally produced as an Artangel commission, and is now in the care of the Longplayer Trust.  Longplayer can be heard in the lighthouse at Trinity Buoy Wharf, London, where it has been playing since it began. It can also be heard at several other listening posts around the world, and globally via a live stream on the Internet.  The song is composed for singing bowls – an ancient type of standing bell – which can be played by both humans and machines, and whose resonances can be very accurately reproduced in recorded form. It is designed to be adaptable to unforeseeable changes in its technological and social environments, and to endure in the long-term as a self-sustaining institution.  How intriguing.  And odd.]

On New Year’s Eve, residents in a small neighborhood in Johannesburg, South Africa collect old appliances, carry them up to apartment building rooftops and toss them down to the streets far below. [As farfetched as this seems, news articles assure us it’s true.  South African police start their New Year’s work early in the neighborhood of Hillbrow. For weeks, they patrol the area in helicopters, trying to spot caches of appliances on rooftops.  Though pedestrians in Hillbrow are scarce on December 31st, patrolling police officers are often victims to flying objects.  Ouch!]

The capital of Iceland, Reykjavik, holds a fireworks display each New Year’s Eve that is one of the largest in the world.  Most of the fireworks sales there fund rescue operations in the country.  [Yes, its’ a fact.  Icelanders reportedly set off approximately 500 tons of fireworks each year, which is equivalent to almost two kilos of TNT per person!  While the fireworks show has become somewhat renowned, it is perhaps a lesser-known fact outside of Iceland that the country’s volunteer rescue team, ICE-SAR, is behind the bulk of the fireworks sales, funding their recuse efforts.]

Different Calendars:

Ethiopia has 13 months. Their current year is 2010 (not 2019), and they celebrate their New Year on September 11th.  [While we can’t validate that their current year is 2010 (it may be 2011), it’s actually true.  The Ethiopic calendar has 12 months of 30 days plus 5 or 6 epagomenal days, which comprise a thirteenth month. A 6th epagomenal day is added every 4 years, without exception, on August 29th of the Julian calendar, 6 months before the corresponding Julian leap day. Thus, the first day of the Ethiopian year is usually September 11th (Gregorian). However, it falls on September 12th in years before the Gregorian leap year.  Amazing.]

In Korea and a handful of other Asian countries, when you are born, you are considered to be one year old, and everyone’s age increases one year on New Year’s Day. Hence, if you were born on December 29th, on New Year’s Day, you’ll already be 2 years old. [Hmm…  This is close but not technically accurate in all of Asia, because of the difference between the dates of Western New Year’s Day (January 1st) and the Chinese New Year (which will be February 5th this year).  East Asian age reckoning originated in China and continues in limited use there and in Japan.  It is still common in Korea. People are born at the age of one (instead of “zero”), and on Chinese New Year or New Year’s Day one year is added to their age. Since age is incremented at the beginning of the lunar or solar year, rather than on the anniversary of a birthday, people may be one or two years older in Asian reckoning than in the international age system.  This make this writer wonder:  How does this affect the age when you get to drive or see Rated R movies?]

North Korea does not use the normal Gregorian calendar like most of the world.  The country uses a different calendar system called the Juche calendar for numbering the years, with Year One of this calendar beginning on the founder of North Korea, Kim Il Sung’s birthday. [We’re not surprised that this is true.  The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea calendar, DPRK calendar, or Juche calendar named after the Juche ideology, is the system of year-numbering used in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. Our year 1912 is “Juche 1” in the North Korean calendar. There are no “before Juche 1” years, and years before 1912 are given numbers based on the Christian calendar only. Ranges of years that begin before 1912 and end after it are also given in Christian calendar numbers only.  Any years after 1912 are given in either Juche years only, or in Juche years and the corresponding year in the Christian calendar in parentheses. In material pertaining to relations with foreign countries, “the Juche Era and the Christian era may be used on the principles of independence, equality and reciprocity.”  Okay then.]There are only 14 possible calendars. In 2019, you can re-use calendars from these years: 1929, 1935, 1946, 1957, 1963, 1974, 1985, 1991, 2002, and 2013.  [Absolutely true!  Based on the Gregorian Calendar, we recycle the same dates having the same days of the week every 14 years.  This means that you can dig out your old George Michael or Huey Lewis calendar from 1985, or your grandma’s old 1929 calendar that marked the beginning of the Great Depression and reuse them this year!  Also, you can save this year’s calendar to regift to your future grandchildren as a “vintage” item in 2030, 2041, 2047, 2058, 2069, 2075, 2086, 2097, 2109, and 2115!]

Well, that’s it for today, friends!  We hope you’ve enjoyed our New Year’s Day trivia, and we’ll see you back this time next week for our regularly scheduled “Tuesday Newsday” post.  Happy New Year!

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Put it in perspective

It’s Monday. Welcome to a new week. Today is the day for “Monday Ministry.” Did you know that Attorney Dean Burnetti went to seminary before he was called to the legal field?  The following is a devotion given to you by Dean…

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1 Peter 5:10 – “In his kindness God called you to share in his eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation.”

I was listening to Christian radio this morning when I heard a song that I truly enjoyed. One of the lyrics was, “I am a flower quickly fading.”

Scripture describes us often as being a flower or blade of grass that is here for only a season. But how can a life possibly extending over a hundred years be considered a flower that is quickly fading?

The answer is perspective.

perspective

I remember as a teenager thinking to myself that I couldn’t wait to turn 16-years old so I could finally get a job and get my own car. I would be free, and my life would be emancipated. It seemed to me as though this short time of a few years stretched into an eternity.

Yet now at the age of almost 60, it seems that time passes by so quickly. I can’t believe that another year so fleeting passed me by. Now it makes me appreciate how the song writer described our experience on Earth as a flower that is quickly fading, here today and gone tomorrow.

God sees us from a perspective of eternity. It makes the suffering and hardship of life only temporary.

Know that you are a creature of eternity. Your time on earth is only for a little while. God says that in our conclusion on earth, we will be restored, healed, and strengthened to a new life. God will place us on a new foundation that cannot be moved or faded.

As believers, we cannot lose our vision of who we are and where we’re headed. We must hold tight to Heaven’s perspective.

Have a blessed week!

~Dean Burnetti

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