Why, was that 'Answer Your Cat's Question Day?' Pa. couple suggests unusual days for recognition in Chase's guide.

January 23, 1992|By Knight-Ridder

Quick. If you have a cat, and you haven't yet answered its question, you've missed out.

You'll have to wait until Jan. 22 of next year.

Think about it: Your poor cat will have to live in silence, cocking its head quizzically at you every so often, for another 364 days without so much as a response. Could you live with yourself? (And you call yourself an animal lover?)

The problem, of course, is figuring out exactly what question the cat desires answered. There could be so many, including: "Why did you have my front claws brutally ripped out?" "Why do you abandon me here all day to sleep by myself?" "When is that noisy, messy child moving back out of my house?"

But the inventor of Answer Your Cat's Question Day, Thomas Roy of Myerstown, Pa., says a cat might be puzzled by even more things.

" 'Why do you wear clothes?' 'Why do you voluntarily put your whole body into a large tub of water?' " Mr. Roy pointed out last week. "It's for all cat lovers who know that their cats are looking at them and are wondering what they're thinking about. A dog's basic question is, 'When do we eat?' "

Answer Your Cat's Question Day is listed in the 1992 edition of Chase's Annual Events, which has become a standard reference book for media, planners and mental health counselors. Mr. Roy and hiswife, Ruth, are a morning radio news team in Harrisburg, Pa.

They've also invented 24 "holidays" for Chase's, under the auspices of the Wellness Permission League, which consists of, well, them.

The thing is, anybody can make up a holiday, include their name and address, send it to Chase's, and the editor will print it.

Just imagine: We could have Thumb Your Nose At The Boss Day, Wave At Complete Strangers Day, No Driving Slowly In The Fast Lane Day, Wear Purdue Colors Day, and Be Kind To Virginias Everywhere Day.

Those are similar to some of the momentous occasions listed in the bible of events.

Six years ago, the Roys came up with Northern Hemisphere Hoodie-Hoo Day, Feb. 20. Chase's printed it. It was the beginning of great things.

The entry suggests this celebration: "At high noon citizens are asked to go outdoors and yell 'Hoodie-Hoo' to chase away winter and make ready for spring, one month away."

Mr. Roy said that day, and others, have caught the attention not only of the media, which pounce on such things as historic anniversaries and odd celebrations, but also mental health counselors, events planners at nursing homes, hospitals and military bases, and teachers, whose jobs are to find fun things to do and brighten people's days.

And you can thank the Roys for: Panic Day, March 9; Stay Out Of The Sun Day, July 3; and Show And Tell Day At Work, Jan. 9.

The Roys have been featured in newspaper articles and radio and television shows. They were asked to appear on "The Tonight Show."

And they don't get a cent out of all that creativity.

"The whole thing is a lark for us. It's fun; they all promote wellness," Mr. Roy said. "They're cost-free mental health days, and they're just silly."

Only one of their suggestions,Worldwide No Underwear Day on May 8, was altered by the Chase's folks, to Worldwide No Socks Day.

Chase's editor, Mary Eley in Chicago, says any event, anniversary or made-up holiday is printed, as long as it is in good taste and the person offering it is willing to allow his or her name, address and phone number be printed.

Ms. Eley herself was in a quandary about how to celebrate annual Clean-Off-Your-Desk Day on Monday, because it was also a national holiday, so she wasn't at work. "I really needed to do that, but I guess I'll have to wait until next year," Ms. Eley said.

As for the Roys' observation of Answer Your Cat's Question Day, their three cats (Luther, Miss Valentine and Charlie) have lived with them for quite a while.

"They don't have to ask us much."

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