The Hidden Almanac for
Monday September 16th, 2013
Episode 2
Previous episode: 2013-09-13
Next episode: 2013-09-18


Today is the anniversary of the sinking of the Remedial Stag, as well as the Feast Day of St. Fenester. And in the garden, it is cantaloupe season, if you time it right.

Be Safe, and Stay Out of Trouble.


Welcome to the Hidden Almanac. I'm Reverend Mord. Today is September 16th, 2013.

On this day in history,[1] the clipper ship Remedial Stag was lost at sea. It was carrying over a ton of gold and silver, but its primary cargo was an alcoholic drink made of fermented mango juice. There were only three survivors, including the ship's chaplain, cabin boy, and cat. The chaplain maintained that the Remedial Stag foundered in a terrible storm. The cabin boy, however, reported that the sea was calm prior to the Stag's destruction. He described a school of flying fish suddenly leaping onto the deck of the ship followed by terrible noises from below the waterline.

Wreckage from the Remedial Stag washed up on several beaches some months later, but the bulk of the ship was not recovered. The ship's chaplain was murdered later that year by persons unknown. The cabin boy changed his name and never set foot on a ship again. The ship's cat went on to hold a series of minor public offices and was buried with full honors at the military cemetery in Harper's Grove.[2]

Today is the birthday of the playwright Eleanor Anomalous who wrote three plays before her sixteenth birthday. Critics thought of them as "groundbreaking" and "baffling." She gave up writing forever and became a missionary. Of her plays she said only, "I write what is given to me to write, and the actors act what is given to them to act." She died in 1974, of sepsis after falling on a cactus. There's no word as to whether or not the cactus converted.

It is also the birthday of a small tan lizard that lives in a dry fieldstone wall several miles away. It ate a slug today.

Today is the Feast Day of Saint Fenester[3] who is rarely represented in iconography. His twin hounds, however, are frequently invoked for protection and are shown as two large bloodhounds with haloes. The hound on the right is portrayed with a thorn through its paw for reasons unknown. Saint Fenester was a 12th century poacher who converted, renouncing his evil ways, and became a bishop of the Church.

In the garden, home-grown cantaloupe is ripe today, but only before noon. If you are listening after noon, then you have missed it and it is now rotten. You will have to try again next year. There are several cultivars of cantaloupe which have a longer window of ripeness, including "Southern Beauty" and "Indigo Queen."[4] Experts suggest picking cantaloupe when it slips easily from the stem and makes a hollow sound when thumped. They go on to add that those are very subjective measurements and that in the end all you can do is cut it open, take a bite, and hope.

The Hidden Almanac is brought to you by Red Wombat Tea Company, purveyors of fine and inaccessible teas. Red Wombat — "We Dig Tea."

It is also brought to you by Bob's House of Discount Stigmata.[5] Nobody bleeds like Bob's![6]

That's the Hidden Almanac for September 16th, 2013. Be Safe, and Stay Out of Trouble.


Out of Character

The Hidden Almanac is a production of Dark Canvas Media, written by Ursula Vernon and performed and produced by Kevin Sonney. Our theme music is Moon Valley and our exit music is Red in Black, both by Kosta T. You can hear more from Kosta T at the Free Music Archive. All other content is copyright 2013, Ursula Vernon.


  1. What year?
  2. While there have been a number of animals that held honorary offices, the wording makes one wonder if 'ship's cat' might be a position, rather than an animal. Although considering the number of other non-humans that have held office in The city, perhaps that is over-thinking it.
  3. Fenester means window as seen in the well-loved word 'defenestration'
  4. Neither mentioned cultivar is available around here
  5. For those of you who are not up on your Christian oddities, stigmata are wounds corresponding with the crucifixion wounds of Christ. They don't have to bleed, but popular culture prefers gore.
  6. One wonders if originally Ursula was thinking of all the sponsors being Bob's (something).
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