Welcome “season of mists and mellow fruitfulness, close bosom friend of the maturing sun.”

Gotta love Keats, especially today.  It is the First Day of Autumn.

There is something delicious about fall.  Maybe it’s the promise of cooler weather after a scorching summer.  Maybe it’s the smell of pumpkin, cinnamon, and other spices of the season.  Maybe it’s the extra thick Vogue with the season’s luxurious looks.  Or, maybe it is that all of this happens under a glorious canopy of color.  

We here at The Daily Cupcake love fall and could keep listing reasons (football, sweaters, chili, Halloween…) ad naseum.

Instead we lift today’s cupcake to the dipping thermometer and crispy air.

Happy First Day of Autumn.

Elephant Appreciation Day

Today’s cupcake goes out to all of those who love elephants and help to protect them.  It is International Elephant Appreciation Day.

Years ago, I happened to catch part of a documentary on an elephant herd, and it made quite an impression.

Basically, a calf had just been born and was struggling to walk.  The herd stayed with the wee one (well, wee for an elephant) and tried to nurture and guide it with tender trunk hugs.  The calf still struggled.  Soon the herd was in desperate need of water and had to move on, clearly hesitant to leave the new born.  Only the parents stayed to care for the calf, who was equally in danger.  The documentarians were heart-broken that their work was about to record the demise of this small family and tried to figure out how to help without creating more stress for the struggling group.

Miraculously, the next morning the calf was finally able to stand (he was an unusually tall calf and his legs had cramped in the womb; it took time for the legs to strengthen and stretch) and slowly the three made their way to a watering hole.  

By the end of the program I was a crying mess and had a new love of the elephant.  They are deeply loyal and loving creatures.  Those studying elephants report that they  display “a wide variety of behavior, including those associated with grief, art, play, use of tools, compassion and self-awareness — evidence of a highly intelligent species rivaled only by dolphins and primates.”

And, of course, these tremendous creatures are losing their natural habitat to ever expanding mankind.  Then there are those who hunt them, for sport or ivory.

Today is the day to honor earth’s largest land-dwelling mammals.  If you would like to help their plight, several organizations are dedicated to the protection of elephants and enforcing the poaching laws that protect them and would welcome your support.


Lest you take your pirate habits a day too far, let us explain.  Today commemorates the sweet, juicy concoction punch.  It’s National Punch Day.

British Colonists living in India were introduced to the celebrational drink (originally served with alcohol, so truly celebrational).  And 100 years later, high school boys are trying to honor the original tradition by returning the “punch” to punch.  Ah, the circle of life.

Since National Punch Day coincides with clean hands week, here is a way to celebrate both.  Latex gloves are filled with the drink of choice (plastic side in, powdery side out, otherwise eeeewwwww) and frozen, then added to the punch.

Compliments of Better Homes and Gardens (

Kinda creepy?  Sure.  Kinda fun?  Yep.

Happy Punch Day!


Shivver me timbers!  It’s here!

Today is finally here.  I know you have looked forward to it all year as we have!

Yep, it is finally Talk Like A Pirate Day!

According to its founders, Cap’n Slappy and Ol’ Chumbucket, the reason to speak pirate lingo today is “because we’re guys, and because we can.”

Lofty ambitions and misogyny aside, this day caught on like wildfire.  

And why not?  Why should preternaturally handsome actors and amusement park workers have all the fun?  The rest of us should have a day to release our inner sea-dilenquent.

Available at from

What may have started as a lark is now an Internet sensation.  Need pirate socks, pirate t-shirts or a pirate patch?  They are available.

For the day, you can ditch your parentally given moniker and adopt a more fearsome tag.  (For example, Pirate Bella the Rum-Swiller–it’s rather catchy).  Websites galore offer tips on everything from how to make a paper hat to pirate-ese translators and dictionaries.

Weigh anchor and hoist the mizzen, me fellow scallywags.  Happy Talk Like a Pirate Day!

Have Respect: Wash Your Hands!

Today begins Clean Hands Week.

Perhaps the calendar gods saw Contagion last week-end and freaked out like the rest of us did.  Regardless, the best way to battle the phantom threat of a modern plague is to scrub down the phalangies.

Experts recommend humming “Happy Birthday” while soaping up.  The Daily Cupcake asserts that humming “Happy Birthday” does not make a person sound foolish enough.  We recommend a verse from Sir Mix-A-Lot’s classic “Baby Got Back” or perhaps the chorus of “Hit Me Baby One More Time.”

And having awesome looking soaps, like these found at Bath Bubble and Beyond couldn’t hurt.  

Today also happens to be Respect Day.

Really, we are trying here, but the truth is, that commemorative days have to be created to encourage people to wash their hands and have respect for one another is just frightening.

We would like to think better of humanity than this.  Though perhaps those in public office do need a reminder.  So today’s cupcake is a congressional reminder to keep yourself clean and have a little respect.

Mayflower Day

Thankfully in 1620, there were at least 102 discontented Brits who had endured enough of English society that they were willing to risk life, limb, and serious seasickness to start over elsewhere.

This is mind-boggling.

Just what does a person have to go through to want to start over in a new world? I’m guessing there were old nay-sayers who still thought the world was flat.

So these pilgrims were willing to sail off the edge of the world rather than live another moment in tyranny. What makes the story all the more awe-inspiring is that they didn’t just sit around whining and complaining about how lousy life was, nor did they spend all their time saying someone else should fix the problems. On September 16, they took their lemons to another shore and had the Native Americans show them how to make New World lemonade.

And what did the adventurous pilgrims do to entertain themselves for more than 60 days? Stories? Jokes? Songs? More likely: prayer, probably for forgiveness for foolishly thinking a ship trip was a good idea.

So today’s cupcake goes out to those optimistic pilgrims. Happy Mayflower Day!

I wonder what they would think of their New World’s 2011 congress.

Felt and 102 Degrees

Just as the thermometer is topping out in the triple digits, yet again (60+ days and counting), it’s time to don a felt hat?

Today’s seasonally-inappropriate, we’d-die-of-heat-stroke-if-we-tried-it cupcake is for Felt Hat Day.

Evidently, the idea of today is to honor the bygone tradition of hat wearing; to wear a felt hat just for the hay–er, felt–of it.

Bogart would be proud.  Really.  

He helped make the Fedora the ultimate topper for the better part of the 30s and 40s.  Movies made the gangster/detective look complete with the Fedora, and Bogart made the gangster or detective look cool.

There are others who have helped keep the tradition alive.  A hatless Indiana Jones just wouldn’t have had swagger.

And then we can’t forget  Mad Men for making us all wish we lived in the stylish decade of the swinging 60s.  

If you happen to live where hat would not be a heat death trap, those of us in the blistering south ask that you put on a felt hat today.  We shall support you in spirit if not in practice.

Happy Felt Hat Day!