April 18 brings a mixed bag of woes and wonders. In the UK it is National Stalking Awareness Day, the start of National Stalking Awareness Week (18-25) which has an assortment of initiatives from regional police, local authorities and the nascent Women’s Equality Party who have launched a campaign to bring stalking laws into full effect. It was underscored by a horrific account from pop princess Lily Allen in Saturday’s Guardian.

It is also Orchid Male Cancer Awareness Week (18-24) throwing light on one of those awkward subjects we men don’t talk about, namely penile, testicular and prostate cancer. The Orchid charity aims to promote research and awareness in these matters.

Parkinson’s Awareness Week (18-24) is has a similar aim for those who suffer from this degenerative condition that damages the nervous system. A study reveals many people will try to hide their diagnosis as long as they can.

The Big Pedal (18-29) is an inter-school cycling and scooting challenge which encourages kids to ride to school. There is potential for some cosplay fun with Superhero Day on the 29th.

National Animal Crackers Day celebrates the invention of animal shaped biscuits in all their varieties. Coincidentally, it is Invention Day in Japan.


New Englanders are celebrating Patriot’s Day marking Paul Revere’s ride to warn that the Old Englanders were on their way.

Over in Russia they are celebrating the Anniversary of the Victory over the Teutonic Knights in the Battle of the Ice 1242. Prince Alexander Nevsky of Novgorod and his army repelled Crusaders who decided to attack Christians for a change. Most of the battle was fought on a frozen lake hence the name. It ended similar attacks for the next century. Apparently an image from a 1938 Eisenstien movie is often mistaken for a contemporary picture of the battle (not sure if that means people think a 13th century photographer was knocking around the battlefield lake).


The International Day for Monuments and Sites is a World Heritage Day, promoted by UNESCO to encourage awareness of the cultural heritage of humanity, its fragility, diversity, and vulnerability.