The Hidden Almanac for
Friday December 20th, 2013
Episode 43
Previous episode: 2013-12-18
Next episode: 2013-12-23


Today, the pirate Ribbon Jack was hanged. It is also the birthday of the sixth Prime Minister, and today two field mice evaded a hawk. It is the Feast-Day of St. Somniferus, and in the garden we review radishes.

Be Safe, and Stay Out of Trouble.


Welcome to the Hidden Almanac, I’m Reverend Mord. Today is December 20th, 2013.

It was on this day in 1593 that the notorious pirate Ribbon Jack was hanged. His list of crimes against the crown was so lengthy that the bailiff only read the highlights and concluded with “And sundry other offenses.” He is credited with capturing over forty merchant vessels during the course of his career, although historians suspect that the Red Lane Shipping Company may have been using him in order to dispose of vessels and claim the insurance money. Ribbon Jack was never allowed to make a public statement and was hanged while wearing a hood. Autopsies indicated that the notorious pirate may actually have been an eighty-five pound bag of seaweed.

The Red Lane Shipping Company denied all of these rumors repeatedly, changed their company name several times in ensuring [sic] centuries, and is currently known as the Overcity Bank Trust.

And it was on this day that two field mice attempting to evade a red-tailed hawk shared a brief, fraught liason under an oak leaf. Both mice later chalked it up to “just one of those crazy things that happen,” but remembered it fondly later in life.

And today is the birthday of the sixth Prime Minister, who was assassinated within six weeks of taking office. Mourning was brief and largely perfunctory. “He was always telling me to go get coffee,” said one member of the cabinet. “I’m the secretary of agriculture. I have more degrees than God. Frankly, it couldn’t have happened to a nicer man.” The seventh Prime Minister was significantly more popular and introduced several notable reforms.

It is the Feast Day of Saint Somniferus, patron of opiates. Represented as a poppy crowned with the sun or more elaborately as a dreamy-eyed youth in a field of poppies, Saint Somniferus is worshipped by anesthesiologists, and his seal is sometimes used by drug companies to indicate controlled substances.

In the garden this week, we turn to the Echo Harbor Book of the Soil, which offers the following radish varieties: Crisp White, Silent Red, Mare’s Blood, Giant Tooth, Early Sweet, and Subterranean Dreaming. In the Hidden Almanac Test Garden, we can recommend the Giant Tooth radish as a particularly fine variety, while Subterranean Dreaming is prone to bolting at the first sign of hot weather.

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

Also brought to you by Bandit Broth! Introducing our new seasonal flavor, “Chunky Harvest!” Bandit Broth—the only broth brewed by bandits at a price that won’t rob you blind.

That’s the Hidden Almanac for December 20th, 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.


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