The A.V. Club’s guide to February
As a wise man once said, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” That’s the last thing we here at The A.V. Club want, so we’ve compiled a handy reference of notable events of the coming month to make sure you don’t miss out on any of the key holidays, remembrances, and events the next 29 days will offer.
Shows of note
With the December/January entertainment doldrums finally in the past, it’s time to ramp things up with some quality shows. And to put it nicely, February ain’t fucking around. None other than celebrated indie recluse Jeff Mangum—he of Neutral Milk Hotel and that In The Aeroplane Over The Sea album you may have heard about—comes to the Pabst Theater Feb. 8, for a show that is sure to go down as legendary. (It’s sold out, BTW.) On Feb. 18, Milwaukee’s Cedar Block takes over Turner Hall for “Sexy Results,” an art/music/science/God-knows-what-else variety show that will attempt to answer the question of Life, The Universe, And Everything. Oh, and less than a week later, on Feb. 24, The Promise Ring (!) reunite for a one-off show (!!) at Turner Hall. Beat that, March.
Holidays (Day Off From Work category)
Presidents’ Day, Feb. 20
February’s one and only actual, day-off-from-work (for some of us, anyway) holiday was originally always on George Washington’s birthday, Feb. 22. But then someone noticed that day isn’t always on a Monday, so now we celebrate Presidents’ Day on the third Monday of the month. This holiday is recognized by used car and furniture store sales.
Holidays (No Day Off From Work category)
Groundhog Day, Feb. 2
Every year on Feb. 2, a groundhog pokes his head out to predict how much winter is left, which makes sense because no one knows the weather like a giant rodent. Hopefully Punxsutawney Phil will predict an early spring this year. (Yes, there is an actual groundhog.) And no, if you go to Pennsylvania you will not relive Groundhog Day over and over until you get it right.
Super Bowl Sunday, Feb. 5
Although it’s technically not a holiday, it really should be. After all, Super Bowl Sunday only comes once a year, most of us have the day off from work, many of us have specific rituals that we follow, and everyone is hung over the next day. Realistically, it’s more of a holiday than President’s Day.
Valentine’s Day, Feb. 14
The day of love is supposed to celebrate the wonderful romantic relationships that we have developed and nurtured in our lives. Those of you who actually have that can suck it. The rest of us, who live in the real world, will either try to forget what day it is while we watch TV and eat an entire case of Sweethearts alone, or just mess things up horribly in a disastrous show of romantic incompetence.
Mardi Gras, Feb. 21
This was originally a special day set aside to gorge on way too much rich food and alcohol right before the fasting of Lent starts on Ash Wednesday. Now, it is a special day where women show their assets for plastic beads while everyone listens to jazz and gets drunk on a Tuesday. So yeah, it’s one of the best days of the year—at least if you’re in New Orleans or have the freedom to party like you are.
Leap Day, Feb. 29
Did you realize 2012 is a leap year? That means we get an entire extra day. What will you do with your February bonus day?
All Damn Month
We set aside the second month of the year as African American History Month, a time to honor the many contributions of African Americans to our country’s history. Everyone already knows about Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks, but that’s just the beginning. You have 29 whole days to find some other historic black Americans to celebrate, so get on it.
Simpsons and Futurama creator Matt Groening celebrates his birthday this month (Feb. 15, 1954), and so would Jimmy Hoffa (Feb. 14, 1913) if he were still alive and if anyone knew where he was. The second month of the year brings us several hotties like Lauren Conrad (Feb. 1, 1986), Isla Fisher (Feb. 3, 1976), and Jennifer Aniston (Feb. 11, 1969), which is perfect, since it gives us lonely hearts a nice selection of unattainable crush objects to pine for come Valentine’s Day. For those who prefer their hot, unattainable crush objects to be male, John Travolta (Feb. 18, 1954), Ashton Kutcher (Feb. 7, 1978), Josh Groban (Feb. 27, 1981), and Billy Zane (Feb. 24, 1966) are all turning a year older this month.