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In honor of all things odd
March 06, 2007, 12:00 AM By Heather Murtagh

Daily Journal file photo Sequoia High School teacher Ron Gordon and his family celebrated the last odd day on Jan. 3, 2005 by holding root vegetables in honor of Square Root Day on Feb. 2, 2004.

Not everyone celebrates oddities, but that’s the whole point of 03/05/07 dubbed "Odd Day” by Sequoia High teacher Ron Gordon who noticed the rare occurrence of consecutive odd numbers in a date — an occurrence that happens six times at the start of a century.

Gordon declared 01/03/05 as the first Odd Day — a date he noticed when giving his students the due date for an assignment. In honor of all things odd, Gordon is asking people to send descriptions and pictures of odd events and people dealing with odd numbers. The last winners was a group of Gunn High School students lead by Elissa Brown, a senior at the time, who dressed up silly and paraded around town. Their entry included photos and a parade route.  

First prize is $135.79. Third prize wins $1 + $3 + $5 + $7 +$9 totaling $25. Fifth place will take home $1.35.

"It’s like a calendar comet — suddenly it’s here to brighten your day and then it’s gone for 80 years,” he said.

Gordon just finds the idea to be an easy, fun way of celebrating all things different. It’s not the only number-based holiday Gordon celebrates. Square Root Day like 09/09/81, 02/02/04 or the next one on 03/03/09 are also celebrated with things like root vegetables. Gordon doesn’t encourage celebrating Even Day, however — he doesn’t want to be held responsible for people getting even.

Contestants have a 357-hour window — between 3 a.m. Feb. 18 through 9 p.m. March 20 — to complete or make their odd entry. The entry must be submitted within 135 hours of the March 20 deadline — in other words entries are due by Monday, March 26 at 3:15 a.m. to be considered.

Gordon put together some suggestions for celebrating the odd season such as "figure out why odd has an odd number of letters and even has an even number of letters,” or "look for sea odders” or "odds ’n ends.”

Currently, Gordon’s three children have a consecutive odd connection since they are 13, 15 and 17 years old. He was taken aback when the odd sequence was pointed out.

"They weren’t born odd. I wonder if it’s genetic or just a function of the calendar,” he said.

Four consecutive odd dates remain in this century. The next odd day will occur May 7, 2009, followed by  July 9, 2011, then Sept. 11, 2013 ending with Nov. 13, 2015. There’s an 80-year break at that point before such a ‘holiday’ will happen.

"Our son Kyle wanted to know why they didn’t get Odd Day off from school,” Gordon said with a laugh.

His middle child, Tyler, described the holiday — and his father — as the edge of goofy pushed to the limit.


Send entries to rgordon@seq.org or to Ron Gordon, P.O. Box 5133, Redwood City, CA 94063. For more information call (650) 364-0652.


Heather Murtagh can be reached by e-mail: heather@smdailyjournal.com or by phone: (650) 344-5200 ext. 105. What do you think of this story? Send a letter to the editor: letters@smdailyjournal.com. 


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