September is a strange month for celebrations. Apparently it's National Chicken Month -- do we really need a whole month just for chickens? Sept. 13 is the birthday of Roald Dahl, author of such delightfully strange children's stories as "James and the Giant Peach" and "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory." To top it all off with the ultimate geek-fest, Sept. 22 is National Hobbit Day, a day when every Baggins, Took and Brandybuck can revel in their (admittedly awesome) weirdness. The only way to top off all of this strangeness would be to focus on weirdness itself -- to set aside a single day and celebrate the weird ones in your life.
This is exactly what the city of Austin, Texas, has done for the past few years, celebrating Wonderful Weirdos Day on Sept. 9 -- a day created by holiday aficionado,Tom Roy. Citizens of Austin have always found pride in their eclectic and progressive culture -- the hippie scene was big during the 1960s and '70s, and the city continues to harbor an independent spirit. Austin is the host of the massive South by Southwest music festival, for instance, a haven for more than 1,400 independent rock acts that takes place every spring. The city officially recognized its weirdness in 2000 when "Keep Austin Weird" caught on as the official slogan and graced bumper stickers and T-shirts.
Austin isn't the only city with weirdos, however. Wonderful Weirdos Day is catching on in other parts of the country. If you wish to partake, HowStuffWorks offers a few ways to highlight your inner quirks:
- Become a member of the Ministry of Silly Walks for the day. With each step, swing your legs forward as high as possible. Improvise with random jigs and stutters.
- Create a fake language between friends, something like Pig Latin or Klingon. Ride around public transportation and speak your new language audibly.
- Wearing a silly costume is a reliable way to celebrate weirdness. Go all out with your favorite pirate or superhero costume. If you prefer weirdo minimalism, wearing slinky eyeball spectacles or beagle puss eyeglasses are great ways to highlight any subtle eccentricities. Knee socks of alternate colors and loud, obnoxious patterns are also a plus.
These are merely suggestions. The best way to celebrate Wonderful Weirdos Day is to be your typically weird self, muttering on elevators and dancing through crosswalks.
For more information on Wonderful Weirdos and related topics, check out the links on the next page.