Sunday, January 7, 2018

Facts and fancy about feisty lemmings for the first Norther of 2017!

Happy Norther!  What is Norther?  It's a fake holiday created by John Michael Greer the Archdruid in response to my telling him about Wester and its animal mascot, the Wester Squirrel.
Druids would likely demand a Souther and a Norther, too, with a Souther Wombat and a Norther Lemming as animal mascots; I'll leave you to decide what if anything they do with goodies.
Ah, but which solstice gets which holiday?  At first, I was not amused by your suggestion, as I thought one parody holiday was enough.  Then I slept on it and not only was I OK with it, I decided that Norther would come after the Winter Solstice and Souther would come after the Summer Solstice.  Why would a lemming visit in the middle of summer?
As a result of that conversation, Norther takes place on the first Sunday after the first full moon after the Winter Solstice, which is today.

Enough of the salutations -- time for the celebration.  In lieu of the Norther Lemming dropping off presents into the ocean, I'm taking a cue from Silly Squirrels for Happy Wester 2017!  Here are three videos showing lemmings being entertaining, although 3 Facts About Lemmings from SciShow does more telling than showing.

Lemmings are small, thickset vole-like animals that live in the Arctic tundra. They live in a harsh environment, are super-cute, kinda mean, and totally misunderstood. But here at SciShow we're going to set the record straight with 3 Actual Facts About Lemmings.
SciShow didn't explain how lemmings are "kinda mean," but Fearless attack lemming - World's Weirdest Events: Episode 2 - BBC Two does.

The humble lemming isn't exactly known for its ferocity. Yet this particular rodent will try to fend off all predators. Chris Packham takes a closer look at this very unusual creature.
Wow!  That's one fierce little animal!  Perhaps that's why lemmings took on the roles of warriors in Norm of the North.

This is still Sunday, so count this clip as the entertainment feature for today.  Yes, Entertainment Sunday still exists, even though I'm doing much more searching for a good fantasy than dealing with reality these days.

Also, I called today "the first Norther of 2017."  Why?
The next Norther will be January 7, as the full moon falls on New Year's Day, so there will be a Blue Moon on January 31.  Speaking of blue lunar holidays, the first full moon after the 2018 winter solstice will fall on Saturday December 22nd, so there will be a second Norther on December 23.  Blue Norther on Festivus!
That's why.  I get to do this all over again in 11 months.  Maybe I can find a video about a lemming feat of strength or airing of grievances by then.

Once again, Happy Norther!


  1. That was fun.

    SciShow didn't explain how lemmings are "kinda mean," but

    The lemmings would probably say the Disney humans were "kinda mean". Mickey Mouse better watch himself. Those Norwegian attack lemmings may hold grudges.

    1. And that movie won Best Documentary at the Oscars. Fortunately for Disney, the lemmings they dumped were common lemmings, not Norwegian ones.

      That reminds me. The highest grossing documentary released last year wasn't "An Inconvenient Sequel." That came in second. It was "Born in China." It's a Disney nature movie about giant pandas. Fortunately, it has no nominations or awards.