Beth Siegalkoff

Fun holiday – Video Games Day! Today is the day to acknowledge the art and science behind video games and to appreciate the skills required to play them. For those of you who have little interest in video games, I concur. However, for clearer understanding of a big part of our culture, here are a few facts.

Video games are played by all ages on an electronic device that usually displays components of the games. They can also be played on a computer, a console, an arcade machine or our cell phones.

Video games became a part of popular culture in the 1970s and 1980s when the technology to games and playing them became affordable and easily accessible.

One of the earliest arcade games that became popular around the world was Atari’s Pong. Released in 1972, Pong was based on tennis. Did you know that the co-founders of Apple, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak and Ronald Wayne, all worked for the video game giant, Atari?

Today, technological innovations have revolutionized both the science and art of video games. Some are so realistic, it is almost like you are there; some are cartoonish, some are brain teasers, and some are educational and make our brains work a little harder to achieve the next level.

Video games have a place in our society – they do present challenges and promote problem solving; however, as in all things, they should be played in moderation, leaving time for our employment, physical activity, conversation and socialization.

How did you enjoy the celebration of our nation’s independence? It was understandable, but disappointing, that some of the cities canceled their large firework displays. But the public made up for it. There were certainly a lot of fireworks brightening the sky over Galt.

We enjoyed the company of a small group of family members for a swim-barbecue and firework display. The weather wasn’t overly hot, the food was delicious, and the Safe and Sane fireworks were colorful and just right for the evening. And, for the first time in a long time, I wasn’t bitten by a mosquito. So, it was a memorable evening.

It is time for Christmas in July! Perfect, since we have been requested to stay home and social distance, and since it is hot outside, we can watch Christmas movies on our social devices (yes, just like video games).

Although, for the past few weeks, I have noticed several television channels have inserted Christmas movies here and there on their daily programming, starting on July 10 at 12 p.m., the Christmas movies begin in earnest. Watching a movie with snow may even trick our brain into thinking it is cooler. And the movies always have a happy ending. I love it!

Christmas movies always have a moral to the story and they bring me joy. So, join me and set your DVR, make some popcorn, pick your beverage of choice, kick back, put your feet up and enjoy.

Recipe for the day – Blueberry muffins; Flower for the day – African Daisies

Dates to Remember:

According to the Old Farmers Almanac, we are in the beginning of the “Dog Days of Summer” (July 3 – Aug. 11).

With social distancing, not a lot is going on, but here are a few dates to write on the calendar … but maybe just in pencil.

School year begins:

Aug. 10 – Galt high school district

Aug. 13 – Galt elementary district

Aug. 17 – Arcohe elementary district

Aug. 20 – Oak View elementary district

Until next week – Be strong, be courageous and make a memory.