Dear Kid,

Some things are better left alone. Some questions just shouldn’t be asked. And yet, I often find myself asking them.

Questions like: What the HECK is Yellow Pig Day?

So glad you asked.

Yellow Pig Day is celebrated on July 17 and it’s all about the number 17.

Happy Yellow Pig Day! (Yes, it's a thing, and yes you should read about it.)


It was invented in the 1960s (which should explain a LOT). Back in the day, two math students at Princeton were obsessively studying the number 17 (that should explain a little more). They went a little mad (IMHO “mad” does not mean crazy so much as it means something else—did I mention this was in the 60s?) and decided to invent the idea of a yellow pig with 17 toes, 17 teeth, 17 eyelashes, etc.

Creating new and prime creatures is not generally considered a sound way to launch a career, but it seemed to work for those two.

Yellow Pig Day is sometimes celebrated on May 17th (stick with me here: May is the 17th month of the previous year). Other mathematicians have gone “a little mad” and not felt any trouble bending the Gregorian calendar to fit their own needs.

If you feel the need to celebrate Yellow Pig Day, I suggest eating yellow food and wishing those around you a happy Yellow Pig Day.

I do not suggest oinking or inventing new ways to interpret the calendar.

Love, Mom