I enjoy thumbing through The Old Farmer’s Almanac. I find it entertaining. Today we have much more sophisticated ways of managing our day to day lives. Before all the modern advances in technology, the Almanac was the manual for managing life.
I decided to have a look at the history of this publication just out of curiosity. I come from a background in print advertising and at a time when many magazines and even newspapers are failing or on the brink of it I wondered how this publication is doing.
The Old Farmer’s Almanac began publishing in 1792 – WOW – and as such is the oldest continuously published periodical. It is still going strong today. I decided to subscribe – only about $10 by the time I got to the final checkout on their website. I was also happy to find a lot of online content.
Speaking of their website, they have done a fantastic job of embracing all the technology out today for Internet commerce. I enjoyed my visit to the site and look forward to the light reading in the printed product.
One thing I ran across on their site that gave me a little chuckle is a list of “100 Ways to Avoid Dying” taken from their 1990 edition. Here is some of what made the list. A lot different from anything we’d see today from our doctor’s office. I’ve include a link at the bottom to the rest of the list.
Housekeeping Hints (from 100 Ways to Avoid Dying)
1. Don’t take ashes out of the fireplace or wood stove between Christmas and New Year’s Day.
2. Never place a broom on a bed.
3. Close umbrellas before bringing them into a house.
4. Avoid sweeping after sundown.
5. You mustn’t wash clothes on New Year Day.
6. Don’t shake out a tablecloth after dark.
7. Never wash a flag.
8. Don’t turn a chair on one leg.
9. Keep cats off piano keys.
10. Don’t hang a dishcloth on a doorknob.
11. Sweeping under a sick person’s bed will kill him or her.
12. Don’t ever, ever rock an empty rocking chair.
Do you enjoy the Old Farmer’s Almanac? How many follow the wisdom found in here for gardening and other household tasks?