Human Appreciation Festivals

Image from Bernd Helfert

Human Appreciation Festivals, sometimes called Baseline Appreciation Festivals or Progenitor Days are a fairly common kind of celebration. Similar events may be held in honour of some particular clade that has given rise to other kinds of being, but because humanity is the last common 'ancestor' of all other Terragens humans are more likely to be recognized in this way than any other clade. These events are most likely to be popular with human nearbaselines of various sorts, or human uploads, or with clades that were directly created by humans and still remember them favourably, but even some clades that are only distantly descended from humanity may hold a festival of this kind.

The particulars of Human Appreciation Festivals vary greatly from culture to culture, but the most common focus is a celebration of Homo sapiens as a whole, for all that species' achievements and as the ultimate origin of all Terragen mindkind. In some places this is a matter of adulation and emulation, but given the much greater capabilities of any modern Terragen over those of the original species there may sometimes be an overtone of pity, or even mockery. More subtly, some such celebrations may be organized around the theme of striving and survival and eventual success against great odds. Particular dates and times vary of course, but a common choice for those who use the Tranquility calendar is Armstrong Day. Another, for reasons now obscure, is 17th Faraday (December 24th in the old earth calendar).

Often for Human Appreciation Festivals the local sophonts imitate either some idealized humans or some particular famous historical or fictional human, especially those from the earliest parts of Terragen history. Figures from Sung dynasty China, or Gupta era India, or the times near the first century BT, or the European or African renaissances, or from the earliest First Federation are particularly popular, but any time or place where human baselines and early nearbaselines were influential is fair game. Most commonly depictions are positive: of great scholars, artists, warriors, or leaders and the like. Less commonly they may be of infamous tyrants, murderers or swindlers. Some sophonts wear a physical costume or mask, or take on an eidolon or virch aspect. Others go so far as making physical modifications. Feasts, dancing, parties, and athletic contests are also often included.

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Development Notes
Text by Stephen Inniss and James Rogers
Initially published on 21 December 2015.

Adjusted December/ faraday date, (July 2022)