Introducing . . . Festivus Appreciation Day

These days, there are Festivus celebrations all year long, with various permutations. In some places, the Festivus pole is also used for limbo contests. Other places ring in the holidays with a little Festivus pole-dancing.

Through it all, Jerry Stiller, who played Frank Costanza, accepts the mantle of "Father of Festivus," at least to "Seinfeld" fans, and declares that he, too, has embraced the holiday.

"For some people, the revelation comes too late that life is best kept to the essentials," Stiller says in the book's forward.

"Some people are given their last rites and that person might say in their last breath, 'I should have celebrated Festivus.'"

Mark Your Calendars: Dec. 23

As a man who has cherished "National Psychics Week," "Talk Like a Pirate Day" and other quasi-holidays, I tried to convince Salkin of the benefit of having a national day, if not for the Festivus celebration, then at least for Festivus Appreciation.

And with a little negotiation with the editors at Chase's Calendar of Events – America's official keeper of all silly holidays – Festivus Appreciation Day is now officially listed as Dec. 23. This doesn't mean you can't celebrate whenever you want, only that you might want to set aside some time to thank "Seinfeld" – a show that always proclaimed to be about nothing – for its humble contributions to modern living.

Holiday purists will sneer at Festivus and Chrismakkuh. But if you haven't noticed, creating quasi-holidays has become something of an obsession, especially in the last six weeks of the year. If you check out some of the events that have earned listings on national calendars, Festivus Appreciation Day may soon qualify as a federal holiday.

Here are a few:

Dec. 28: Econo-Christmas Day: Ever notice how prices for Christmas decorations, gifts and goodies drop the day after Christmas? Celebrants of Econo-Christmas take advantage of all those end-of-year sales by deciding to just hold off on the gift-giving a few days, so that everyone gets a bargain.

Dec. 26: National Whiners Day: A day dedicated to whiners, especially those who return Christmas gifts. The celebration, held each year since 1986, culminates with the picking of the year's top whiners. Noted winners over the past decade: Zsa Zsa Gabor, Tammy Faye Bakker, Mike Tyson, Martha Stewart and last year's whining champ, the Democratic Party.

Dec. 25: A'phabet Day: Also known as "No-L Day," this is a celebration for people who don't want to send Christmas Cards. Bob Birch, president of The Pun Corps, who also created "Compliment Your Mirror Day (July 3), reminds everyone to have a "punderful" day.

Dec. 21: Humbug Day: Another day to air holiday frustrations. Celebrants are allowed 12 "humbugs." Founders Thomas & Ruth Roy are faux holiday legends, who have created such venerable holidays as Cat Herder's Day (Dec. 15), a celebration for anyone who believes their job, or their life, is as frustrating as trying to heard cats. Then there's the much more practical Don't Step on a Bee Day (July 10) and Have-a-Bad-Day Day (Nov. 19) for those who are tired of hearing, "Have a nice day."

The Roys have created more than 60 holidays, some as wild as Bathtub Party Day (Dec. 5), which they sell cards for on their Web site. In a spooky coincidence, many years ago, they created No News Is Good News Day, an event that was once celebrated on, of all days, Sept. 11, when you were encouraged to not read, listen or watch news. It has since been de-listed.

Buck Wolf is entertainment producer at "The Wolf Files" is published Tuesdays.

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