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Beware the Ides of March...

  • Posted on
Beware the Ides of March...


Beware the Ides of March...

it's my birthday!

What is the Ides of March?

The word “Ides” is derived from the Latin word “idus,” which refers to the middle day of any month in the ancient Roman calendar. (For those of you who don't know, I took six years of Latin growing up, hence my obsession with all things Roman or Greek, which has led me to move to Italy.) The Ides were the designated days for settling debt each month in the Roman empire and generally included the seven days preceding the Ides for this purpose. No doubt debtors who could not pay their debts considered the Ides to be unlucky days as they were typically thrown into prison or forced into slavery. The Ides of March was unlucky for Roman Emperor Julius Caesar. He was betrayed, ambushed, and assassinated by his senate on the Ides of March in 44 B.C., leaving an unlucky stigma attached to March 15 ever since. They were fearing their ruler was becoming a dictator. Anyone else out there worried about a dictatorship these days? Contrary to popular superstitious belief surrounding its origins, Ides simply marks the first day of the full moon in every month, so I see this day as a new beginning. (Duh, and obviously it's my birthday).

How to observe the Ides of March?

1. Repay a debt
In honor of the ancient Roman tradition of paying debts on the Ides of March (or of any month for that matter), repay a debt. You'll get some feel-good mo-jo in return from the person who loaned you the money that you somehow have managed not to repay. So for those of you who owe me money, pay up! (just kidding) ;)

2. Plan a Roman Holiday
Turn the Ides of March into a living history lesson. Plan a trip to Italy to explore ancient Roman ruins of the city where Julius Caesar once ruled as the Emperor of the Roman Empire and perished at the hands of his trusted advisors. And then let me know so I can come and see you or you can come and see me in Florence! ;)

3. Toga Party!
When it comes down to it, the Ides of March was basically a huge argument about politics. Is there any political issue that you feel extremely passionate about? Contact your local government official or start an email-sending campaign with your friends. In honor of Julius Caesar, you should exercise your right to participate in politics. Your voice needs to be heard, now more than ever! And then seriously, please throw a toga party and invite me. Maybe this is what I'll end up doing for my birthday...or maybe a yoga party. And of course, you're all invited!! ;)

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