I am deeply disappointed because I missed the opportunity to write a timely column about March 13th, which we all know and love to commemorate, as it is the anniversary of the discovery of Uranus. Surprisingly, my wife was quite relieved when I told her of this oversight only because she imagined that I would go into too much detail, knowing my enthusiasm for wordplay and the outer planets.

However, there is no need to fret. Soon March 20th will be upon us and we will have the choice of celebrating the Vernal Equinox, International Earth Day or Extraterrestrial Abductions Day, as they all share the March 20th holiday slot: a veritable holiday bonanza.

Alright, the vernal equinox is not a holiday. Technically it is an astronomical event. We don’t celebrate the full moon or Venus setting below our horizon but, then again, the full moon or “Venus-set” does not represent the last day of winter or, better yet, the first day of spring.

Also, the vernal equinox represents the transition when the days start getting longer than the nights. This is important, as everyone affected by the winter hinkies knows that if winter were any longer, we might all numb our neurons to the point where we run naked from our cabins in a general southerly direction. After doing the penguin walk down your icy driveway for the past two months, the first day of spring is indeed something to celebrate.

International Earth Day, on the other hand, is an official holiday. I know, you’re thinking that Earth Day is celebrated on April 22nd and it is. It’s just one of those holiday details that haven’t yet been worked out to everyone’s satisfaction. It’s sort of like never knowing which day Easter will pop up in a given year, although the story about Earth Day is much more straightforward than Easter’s homeless tendency.

Back in 1969, the United Nations Secretary General, U Thant, signed a proclamation setting March 21 as the day to honor Earth and the concept of peace. A month later, U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson either happily unaware that Earth Day had already been establish by the United Nations or just a teeny bit upset that the U.N. beat him to the punch, or perhaps spaced-out by the great volume of marijuana smoke being generated in the late ’60s, declared April 22nd Earth Day. Of course nobody ever pays much attention to the U.N., and Gaylord Nelson was much more fun than the U.N. (not that the U.N. sets a very high standard for fun), so the April date is still with us. However, the earth will not mind if it is celebrated on both days.

Your third choice, Extraterrestrial Abductions Day, is truly not an official holiday and ironically is celebrated, by and large, by skeptics and non-believers. Sure, it’s fun to go around in alien costumes promoting conspiracy theories and scaring the children but the last group that will be celebrating such an idea is the people who actually have been abducted by aliens of the “close encounter” kind.

It’s very serious to those whose brains have been probed, gonads sampled and have had chunks of time simply stolen from their lives. These folks have been dragged over the coals by weird-looking creatures and if they could make their encounters go away, they would. You usually don’t celebrate the day you went to prison but, hey, if you want to go out drinking and blowing your vuvuzela, go right ahead. Just remember you won’t get any sympathy when you come back from your own “examination.”

This is a great opportunity to also mention that March 25th is International Waffle Day. I’m not exactly sure how I feel about it. At first, I got very enthusiastic and thought that I liked the idea but after some time passed my enthusiasm waned and my entire attitude took a 180- degree turn. Now I’m back, supporting the idea 100 percent but maybe not for long. I go back and forth on this issue a lot but one thing is for sure: I love International Waffle Day.

I hope this cavalcade of holidays and observances gives you something to celebrate this March. My apologies, but we can double-down and make sure we celebrate the discovery of Uranus next year. Watch out.