With the onset of Spring, this April fool’s fancy turns to thoughts of the three knuckleheads. Stimulated by no less a literary resource than The Three Stooges, my mind started cogitating on something that had been right before me all my life but I never saw it.
The moment of my epiphany came in the episode where the Stooges come across a widow on a farm, who eventually strikes oil out of her old water well and comic hijinks ensue. But not before the requisite farmer’s daughters make their entrance. The farmer’s wife introduces her three, bathing-beauty-grade daughters to the three idiots by name: “Gentlemen, these are my daughters, April, May and June.”
And then it hit me like a cream pie in Margaret Dumont’s face: “Of course, why didn’t I see this before?”
These are the “Girl Months,” or more politically correctly, the “Feminine Months.” (Knuk-knuk-knuk.)
I will demonsterate. April, May and June are the only names of months that anyone would ever call a female offspring. I have never met a woman named December, except when I was a young boy and she was Miss December, but that is a whole ‘nuther branch of study. And think about this: there were only ten months in the original calendar. I can prove that statement, mathematically. After April, May and June, they ran out of names and lazily just started calling them by the uninspired, purely for accounting reasons, Latin ordinal number prefixes; Sept, Oct, Nov, Dec. I take this as more emphatic proof that these were the girls, man.
Also, April, May and June are when the Earth dresses up in pretty things like flowers and new feathers. When the world emulates ladies’ hats and floral prints. Also these months are when nature is reborn, again totally woman.
We know two of the first three months were named after gods (Ianuarius and Mars). Could the next three have been named after goddesses? How cool would that be? We all thought that June Cleaver, The Beaver’s mom (Leave it to Beaver was a sitcom in the late 50s, early 60s for all of you who were born after 1970) was a perfect mom icon, but who knew old June was also a Goddess! On the other hand, the first three could have been called Moeuary, Larryary and Curlyarch! (Sorry, had to go there.)
Do months really have a gender? It is possible. But I think maybe the answer is yes, because when I look back on my writing, most of the relationships, most of the starts, most of the good times (which by literary decree are destined to turn dramatic, if not down right ugly), have been set, unconsciously, by me in the female months.
So there you have it, absolutely useless ruminating about something no sane person would ever spend a minute thinking about. However, I maintain that at some level, we are all guided by the nurturing goddesses of April, May and June. If for no other reason, Mother’s, Father’s and graduations, essential parts of our lives, are all celebrated within the arms of these three Goddesses.
Extra Credit: If you are still wondering about mathematical proof that there were originally only ten months, here’s something I reasoned out, on the spot, during a Trivial Pursuit championship I was part of in the 80s. I literally had ten seconds to figure this out. The question was: What two months were not in the original calendar? I quickly realized that the “number months,” are out of whack by two numbers. Oct = 8, yet October is 10/1/13. Nov = 9 yet November is 11/1/13. Work backward; Sept = 7 yet September is 9/1/13. However, August is 8/1/13 and July is 7/1/13. Now consider that neither June nor August is called “Sextember” (which would have been cool and started me thinking about this long ago, but they ain’t). Therefore, what ever happened when we went from a ten- to twelve-month calendar must have happened in the middle of the year.
Ergo, Caesar! Who but the Emperor would have the power to demand that two months be named after his family – and the best months at that! After all, isn’t the Emperor of Rome far superior to those floozies from the farm, April, May and her sister, June?
So be it, two new months will be fitted into the calendar, and they shall be the best months, and they shall heretofore be known in honor of the Emperors, Julius and Augustus Caesar! (You can call them July and August for short!)
Q.E.D. Which is shorthand notation for “Oh, wise guy, eh?”
Tom Avitabile is the author of two novels, including The Hammer of God, published by our sister company, Fiction Studio Books. You can find out more about it here.