Happy Presidents Day, the holiday that was intended to honor George Washington and Abe Lincoln and the rest has become just as much about selling cars and mattresses and the rest.

And those big Presidents Day sales are pretty much because of bicycles.

Ask not what your country can do for you and your bicycle, ask what you and your bicycle can do for your country!

The Atlantic did a deep dive on the commercial side of the holiday.

In the early days of the US, people unofficially marked George Washington’s birthday every February 22nd with speeches and ceremonies.

It wasn’t until 1879 that Congress made February 22 a holiday, and even then, it was only a holiday for workers in Washington DC.

They finally included everybody else in 1885.

And since it was a holiday and people had the day off, they had to find stuff to do.

The late 19th Century was a big time for bicycling, and so Washington’s birthday became a kind of kickoff day for the new bike season.

Bicycle Day, as it was called, was a big hit for bike riders, even in places like Boston and New York where you’d think they’d wait a few weeks for spring.

But because there were riders out and about in February, bike shops were busy on the holiday as well.

They’d even release their new models for Bicycle Day crowds to admire.

By the turn of the century the bicycling craze was on the decline, but motorcycle shops and then auto dealers picked up where the bike shops had left off.

And they’ve been at it ever since, turning a day originally meant to honor George Washington into a great opportunity to pick up a new ride at a great deal with special financing available to qualified buyers.

Not that I follow the ads for these sales or anything.

Chocolate wizard Amaury Guichon is back with another creation.

This time he took over 500 pounds of chocolate and turned into an eight foot tall velociraptor.

I’m simply saying that chocolate, uh, finds a way.

When Presidents’ Day Was Bicycle Day (The Atlantic)

Making a Chocolate Velociraptor (The Awesomer)

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Photo via Wikicommons