Happy New Year? Yes, THIS is the real New Year's Eve, according to the old calendar. What old calendar? You know, the OLD one. The one that the Romans and Atlantians and Rotarians used so long ago when people wore pointy hats and danced with animals. Ever wonder why September (latin for, "Month 7"), October ("8"), November ("9") and December ("10") are, according to our calendar: 9, 10, 11 and 12, respectively? Is our Gregorian Calendar two months off? Well... not really. Allow Da-da to digress from Da-da topics a moment.
In Ancient Rome, September used to be the seventh month until a whole bunch (the technical term) of rather snoozy calculations and numerical salads were mixed with too much Caesar dressing around 46 BC, when the first month of the year changed from March 1st to January 1st, due mostly to a bet that Caesar had with Brutus that he couldn't add an eponymous month (from "Quintilis" -- Month 5 -- to "Iulius," or "July"), and a nepotistic one (from "Sextilis" -- Month 6 -- to "Augustus," Caesar's adopted son). You get all that? Sure, Brutus got even later, but let's be honest, "SEXTILIS," sounds much better than, "Augustus." The old Roman calendar was hosed anyway, as it used to last some 304 days, with about 61 of those days of winter floating around unassigned because the Romans were too busy expanding their franchise, subjugating anyone not running ROME 1.0 software, and drinking untempered wine. Of course, Caesar's calendar had a flaw that wasn't fixed for about 1500 years, but they used to misplace WHOLE legions, so go figure.
But why did they change the New Year to January? Da-da doesn't care (actually, he's forgotten). The Egyptians had their New Year on August 29, and the Eastern Orthodox Church had theirs on Labor Day, September 1st, but only because PBR and chips were usually on sale. Regardless, anyone with an ounce of sense resets their clocks for SPRING, the growing season, March 1st -- though some did April 1st and some May 1st because they liked May Poles, jeez, who doesn't? (that deviation had more to do with a culture's latitude and when you could lie naked in the grass comfortably, ahem) -- but for much of the world going waaaay back, March 1st was the beginning of the new year. We won't bring into this all the other calendars, of which there are at least a hundred just in Cleveland alone. Like everything else in TIME, this stuff really doesn't matter, though it does give you what you really want: an excuse for a regularly occurring party. So, dust off the Mardi Gras hats a little early, Lombardo. Just don't wake Da-da with your ill-timed jocularity.
Backstory time. Speaking of calendars, the whole December 21st, 2012 Mayan calendar resetting to ZERO thing is another event that's wholly misunderstood. The Mayans, who had a million calendars commemorating this and that, used these calendars to remember pivotal events (like the last time Da-da trimmed his beard). One of the things that the dreaded 12/21/2012 Tzolk'in or Cholq'ij calendar actually commemorates is the cataclysmic sinking of the vast seven island, "continent," a loooong time ago. (And before you wag about there being no sinking land precedent, check out the geology of Lake Tahoe.) Ever looked at a map of the South Pacific, like the Phillipines or Borneo? Of course you haven't. Look at all the islands, which are just mountain-top remains of the island continent.
Da-da's sources place this ancient cataclysmic event on the evening of October 31st, when the Pleiades are high in the sky (hence the calendrical dedication) -- the real basis for why various cultures celebrate this day as the, "eve of the dead," when the veil between life and death is thinnest... aka, HALLOWEEN. (Yeah, this is 20 years of secret society and ancient esoteric research talkin'; the things Da-da knows.) It's also why the sun god at Tiahuanaco is looking west and crying, in remembrance of all who were lost. (Note: those notches are where huge golden wraparound plates were attached. That crack is from a massive earthquake.)
Some left the island continents prior to the cataclysm, and some barely escaped. Many were lost. The survivors went to the cardinal directions -- South America, North America, India, New Zealand, etc. -- founding scores of civilizations (Mahenjo-daro, anyone?), as illustrated by the ancient Indian symbol of the swastika, which literally means, "you four groups go in four cardinal directions for a while -- then turn." (Like all symbols, it has lots of other meanings, too, not the least of which is spiritual.) Those on the move were all to turn in the same direction, after a time, so as not to bump into one another. Yup, people have always had issues.
Physically speaking, the Egyptian and Mayan "feathered serpent" was sometimes depicted with red body, blue head, and green feathers, which might illustrate the aforementioned sunken-island Pacific continent looking like a serpent from the air (and still does if you trace the remaining island chains using Google Earth). Note that there may have been more than one serpentine island chain in oceans XYZ; sea levels, ice ages and capricious geology can ruin your whole day. Some recent, "seers," have called the Pacific variant, "Lemuria," or, "Mu," but it's real name has yet to be determined, as it's called many things in many languages no one really speaks anymore -- and then, each big island had its own unique name apart from the whole chain. It may have been called, "Xahila" or "Xanhel," which is Mayan for, "Great Serpent," ravished from the Heavens [Oxlahun-ti-Ku], though this could refer to another island chain, or something that disturbed the ancient vision of the Milky Way; the edge-on view of our galaxy in the sky has long been called a "dragon," ever since humans wore fake mustaches and put chickens in their underwear. Right. A LONG TIME.
There might be a few doctoral theses in there about this and that and where and when and how, but it so doesn't matter anymore, as Halloween candy is so damnably expensive now, anyway. Besides, good luck getting all this past chicken-butt scientists and anthropologists and archeologists and the media who are not only politically invested in their antiquated historical models, but also scared to death about anything that reveals the fact that the earth is DYNAMIC, and has whacked back countless advanced civilizations -- and will invariably whack parts of ours again one day. No biggie. Death itself isn't that spooky, as it's not really "death," as much as it is going back into the big spirit soup kitchen to find a parking space for your cosmological roach coach -- though hopefully you've divested yourself of a few roaches along the way. Ah, but once your kitchen is totally cleansed of roaches like anger and fear and guilt? BOOM. Well, then you might have a little problem with there actually being no individuals, per se, along with the loss of your "personality," which is an illusion, and the fact that we're all tiny drops of a giant spirit ocean, but Da-da's getting waaaay ahead of himself. Though this does aptly demonstrate the unconscious fear associated with, "Invasion of the Bodysnatchers," and a bunch of other sci-fi bugaboos about the evils of "group consciousness."
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Krikey, what the hell was Da-da talking about? Oh, right. HAPPY NEW YEAR, Caligula. Give your horse a kiss at midnight. And don't worry: it's not like the Mayans said a giant spooky hole was gonna open up and you were all gonna jump into it in fear. Jeez, some people will believe anything.