Birthdays Famous Ones Part II

In this second of our series on famous birthdays we're going to be discussing one that is everybody's favorite. This is one of those birthdays that is open to so many different ways to celebrate it that it is considered one of the biggest holidays of the year in the United States. The birthday is the birth of the nation itself, Independence Day, or what is more commonly referred to as the 4th of July. This is indeed a truly unique holiday as it is the only one that is more recognized by the date it falls on than by it's actually name.

The 4th of July is celebrated in stages by most people. The first part of the day, usually in the morning, the family goes out shopping, maybe to a mall or shopping center. There are usually a ton of sales going on all over on this day.

Just drive down the highways and you'll see big 4th of July banners lined up and down the road, mostly at the locations of auto dealers, which have their biggest sale day of the year on this birthday. After the family has gone shopping then it's back to the house for the big barbecue. Everything and anything goes at these bashes. You'll see more food than at a wedding. Hot dogs, hamburgers, chili, chicken, steak, you name it.

The big deserts for this day are ice cream and smores. Anyone who doesn't find enough food to eat at these barbecues just isn't trying. Of course the barbecue isn't complete without backyard games like badminton or croquet. Some people even have basketball courts in their backyards. And no 4th of July birthday bash is complete without the pool.

People who don't wear bathing suits 364 days of the year can be seen sporting their flimsiest one at these parties. After the barbecue, which usually runs all afternoon until the early evening hours, comes the moment that everybody waits all day for. The 4th of July fireworks. You can't imagine the countless number of dollars that go into putting these things on display. People have different preferences for how they wish to view their fireworks. There are those who are pretty much too lazy to move from their backyard, mostly because they ate too much.

For those who are lucky enough to see the local display from their backyards, that's just where they stay. It's not the best view but for some it's good enough. Then there are those who just have to be in on the action up close and personally. For these people they drive to the nearest fireworks display, plunk down a couple of bucks, and sit in the bleachers for a ringside seat. Quite honestly, there is nothing like seeing fireworks right there where they are happening.

The shows go on for an hour or two depending on how much money the town has spent on explosives. Fireworks are not cheap and you need trained people to put these things on. So putting on a fireworks show can run into big bucks. After the show, everyone goes home. The day of celebrating the country's birthday is over. And while maybe very few people actually reflect on the true significance of the day itself, their independence from tyranny, they at least know somewhere in the back of their mind that without that independence they wouldn't have been able to enjoy the day that they just did.


By: Michael Russell


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