Tuesday - The Day for Fight and Glory

Just as I was drifting away into wonderland, I was curious to know why and who named the days? I had some ideas about the months, which were named after Roman Gods and kings. (January was named after Janus and, August named after Augustus etc.). However, as to the origin of the naming of the days, that was still a mystery to me. So I decided to solve the mystery starting with Tuesday! Till now Tuesday has been just another day between Monday and Wednesday.  So I went to Wikipedia to get some answers.
It turns out that the day was named after the Norse God, Tyr (or Tiw). It was Tiw's Day which later turned into Tuesday. I ran a little background check on Tyr to get to know why they named the day after him. Tyr is supposedly the God of combat, victory and glory. He was the son of Odin (the God of Wisdom and.....), and is often portrayed as one handed. In old Norse, Tyr literally translated to "God", hence he is believed to be the Father of the Gods and head of the pantheon. However later they stated him as the Norse equivalent of Mars, the Roman God of War.

That was the most details I got about the chap. And I was still left with many questions:
1. Why name the days after Norse gods, while the months are named after Roman Gods?
2. What's so special about Tyr that made a day to be named after him?
3. Is there any relation to him and naming this particular day? (Why the third day and not the first or the second day?)

Well the days were actually named by the Greeks, after the solar system. The first day was dedicated to the Sun, the second was the Moon, followed by the 5 planets that were known back then. Incidentally the planets were named after Greek Gods, there by the days of the week were named after these Gods. And the Romans simply stole the ideas from the Greeks and substituted their Gods for the Greek gods (Mars, Mercury,Venus, Jupiter and Saturn).  And according to this the 3rd day was named after the god, Mars. Hence in Latin the 3rd day was called as Dies Martes, which means the day of Mars.

And the Germanic people took the idea from the Romans and incorporated it to fit the Norse gods that they worshipped. So the 5 days that were named after the Roman gods now got to be replaced by equivalent Norse Gods (Tyr, Wodan, Thor, Freyja, however they left Saturn remain, probably because there was no Norse equivalent for Saturn).
And since English is a Germanic language, the days as we use it was derived from these Norse Gods.

Sun's day = Sunday
Moon's day = Monday
Tyr's(Tiw's) day = Tuesday
Wodan's day = Wednesday
Thor's day = Thursday
Freyja's day = Friday
Saturn's day = Saturday

Tada, and that's how the days were named.

The 500 Words A Day Challenge (500WADC)

It's been a while now since I wrote a post on this blog. I may have ignored my blog on the pretext of lack of time, but it's more about the lack of motivation to find time to write. That is not to say that I don't write at all, in fact I'm pretty sure I write somewhere close to 1000 words per week (discounting the weekends of the course) including the blog posts that I write for Classof1, the emails, the reports, the comments I leave on blogs, chatting on various social networks, texting etc.

So I want to focus the time I spend writing into creating some good blog posts, that will be useful for me to improve my writing and also lets me experiment on the marketing and design side of things. The trouble is not usually with finding something interesting to write about, blog topics I have in abundance, thanks to my life being quite interesting and also the many blogs I follow.

So I decided to take up the 500 words a day challenge, starting today. The reason for choosing the 500 words challenge is multiple. First, I've done it before. Second, I've read many people recommending writing 500 words a day. I also found that trying to write 250 words is very constraining, I just wrote the introduction for something, and BHAM!! I reached 250 words. And I usually like to set the context before writing the core idea, since it'll make it easier to write and it'll be convenient for the reader as well. Hence in this regard, the 250WADC doesn't give the space to express myself better and more clearly.

Similarly, the 1000 words challenge is not something for me, since it'll be extremely difficult to start off with 1000 words a day of formal writing, right off zero, perhaps when I'm comfortable with this 500 words a day, I may go in for the 1000 words a day challenge. Another important reason for not choosing the 1000WADC is because the ideal word count for a blog post is under 800 words, so if I write the 500 words challenge I'll be able to easily convert that to a blog post.

So believe 500 is the magic number. However I'm not going to showing off the image on my blog's homepage yet. I'll do that once I hit at least ten 500WADC posts by the end of the month. And this post starts off the proceedings on being my first post on the 500 words a day challenge.

Resolutions: It's that time of the year again

Yet another year and yet another set of resolutions. This annual practice of taking resolutions, it always reminds of the grief cycle. Initially everyone's happy with the new year, and as the days go by they gradually move away from their resolutions. This is when they enter the denial stage, where they are having trouble keeping up the resolution, yet they still believe everything is under control and things would get back on track. Then they move into the second stage, where they realize that they are not able to continue with the resolution, they are angry at themselves or others who helped them to detour from their resolution goals. Next comes the sadness phase, in which they are very emotional  on not being able to keep up with their resolution. And then they slowly move onto the next stage where the sadness decreases and they start to cope with the disappointing end to their resolutions of the year. And finally they just let go of the resolutions and move on with their routine, all set for taking resolutions again the very next year. Almost everyone goes through the stages, the time they stay in each may vary, but it's definitely there.

Courtesy: ShoeBoxBlog
Usually I'm not too inclined with this whole practice of taking resolutions, and I used to rationalize this by telling to myself,  that if you actually wanted to make or break a habit, why wait to the start of a year? Unless there's a secret resolution fairy that appears during the beginning of the year who makes you succeed with your resolutions. So I believed that people just take resolutions at the start of the year succumbing to peer pressure.

But perhaps, that is a good thing since taking resolutions in the beginning of the year is that  the peer pressure of taking and following up with a resolution, gives that much needed push to start the habit. In this world with its multitude of procrastinators, the new year presents itself as a beautiful excuse to start off with something that you had always wanted to do. Hence my reason for starting the year with my set of resolutions.

Although I have decided to continue to take resolutions for the new year, If history is any proof this resolution has little hopes of staying alive till the end of 2013. The maximum time it took me to break my resolution over the years is 3 months. It always started spectacularly, and then gradually tapered down to nothing. So this year I wanted to ensure that history doesn't repeat itself. This time I'm deciding to write my resolutions in public, perhaps this could make the difference.

Now to decide on the set of resolutions. I had 3 things that cropped up in my mind,  3 new and 1 tried and failed resolution.
  1. More than 6 months, without breaking the resolutions
  2. A post per week
  3. A book per month
  4. Learn something new once every 2 months
So if things go well and I stick to the plan, I should have a nice blog with more than 50 posts, read a dozen books and would have learnt at least 6 new things.

Will keep the blog updated on the progress, so it'd be a big motivation if you could drop in once in a while and leave a comment.

PS: The good thing is I'm already down 1  :)