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  • So, what can I do today that I haven’t done in nearly three years, and won’t do for another two and a half years? That’s today’s challenge. For, today is the proverbial blue moon of “once in a blue moon” fame.

    The popular notion these days is that a blue moon is defined as a second full moon in the same month. Because the lunar cycle is about 29 ½ days, and our months are either 30, 31, or 28 days in length, it only happens about once every 2 ½ to 3 years.

    However, that definition began as a mistake. That is not what a “Blue Moon” originally signified. It originally meant when a third full moon occurred in an astronomical season that had four full moons, which didn’t happen often. Most astronomical seasons only have three full moons.
    "The revised definition came about after an article by hobby astronomer James Hugh Pruett was published in the American magazine Sky and Telescope in 1946. He made a miscalculation, and claimed that any second full Moon in a calendar month is called a blue moon. His mistake was easily refuted, and a correction was printed soon after. But his mistake spread worldwide, possibly because his definition was much simpler than the original one.

    "Today, it's so commonly used that it would only be fair to call it a second definition, rather than a mistake". (Source:
    I’m sprouting this from a story I wrote the last time we had a “blue moon”, which happened to be August 29, 2012. Hard to believe Cowbird’s been around long enough to experience a second blue moon! Since the last Blue Moon, I’ve been in 6 different positions at work, I turned 60, I’ve been on 4 cruises, I’ve posted 1234 stories on Cowbird, as well as 249 poems on AllPoetry, and I've played about 250 games of competitive softball. Not bad for 60 year old!

    I still don’t know what I’m going to do today that I haven’t done since then, but I plan to do something – just so I can say I did something that only happens once in a blue moon. Why not?

    By the time the next Blue Moon rolls around (January, 2018), I’ll be 63, a couple months into my 64th year. Will you still need me? Will you still feed me? Maybe by then, I’ll let myself begin to feel old. The first time I heard that Beatles song, 64 sounded like an ancient age. My own dad was only 48 at the time. I was all of 11. Now, it’s only a couple and a half years away. Nah – I’ll still be too young to be old. Maybe I'll get old in my 70's - but, I doubt it.

    Right now, it is still a couple hours before the scheduled Blue Moon (full moon begins at 6:42 a.m. in D.C.), although I must say, it looks pretty full, now! Oh, yeah, that’s the other thing about a Blue Moon – it isn’t really blue. That’s just a term.

    Have a rocking Blue Moon day – do something unique and different today. Then, tell us all about it.
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