## How I Lost $100 and Blamed It On cal(1) Tuesday, March 22, 2011. True story. Back in September 2008, I decided that this year, I would not wait until the last minute to book my Thanksgiving flight home. What's the rule for Thanksgiving again? Oh right, fourth Thursday in November. So I busted out cal(1): $ cal
September 2008
Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa
1  2  3  4  5  6
7  8  9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30


Whoops, it only shows the current month. So I passed it the year:

$cal 08 8 January February March Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 29 30 31 26 27 28 29 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 April May June Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 29 30 27 28 29 30 31 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 July August September Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 1 2 3 4 1 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 29 30 31 26 27 28 29 30 31 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 October November December Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa 1 2 3 4 5 6 1 2 3 1 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 28 29 30 31 25 26 27 28 29 30 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31  I booked my flight for Tuesday, November 20th, and forgot about it. The day approached. I called home just to make sure someone could pick me up from the airport. That's when I discovered that Thanksgiving was actually the following week. I had booked my flight based on the calendar for the year 8 A.D. What I should have done was this: $ cal 2008
2008

January               February               March
Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa  Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa  Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa
1  2  3  4  5                  1  2                     1
6  7  8  9 10 11 12   3  4  5  6  7  8  9   2  3  4  5  6  7  8
13 14 15 16 17 18 19  10 11 12 13 14 15 16   9 10 11 12 13 14 15
20 21 22 23 24 25 26  17 18 19 20 21 22 23  16 17 18 19 20 21 22
27 28 29 30 31        24 25 26 27 28 29     23 24 25 26 27 28 29
30 31
April                  May                   June
Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa  Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa  Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa
1  2  3  4  5               1  2  3   1  2  3  4  5  6  7
6  7  8  9 10 11 12   4  5  6  7  8  9 10   8  9 10 11 12 13 14
13 14 15 16 17 18 19  11 12 13 14 15 16 17  15 16 17 18 19 20 21
20 21 22 23 24 25 26  18 19 20 21 22 23 24  22 23 24 25 26 27 28
27 28 29 30           25 26 27 28 29 30 31  29 30

July                 August              September
Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa  Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa  Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa
1  2  3  4  5                  1  2      1  2  3  4  5  6
6  7  8  9 10 11 12   3  4  5  6  7  8  9   7  8  9 10 11 12 13
13 14 15 16 17 18 19  10 11 12 13 14 15 16  14 15 16 17 18 19 20
20 21 22 23 24 25 26  17 18 19 20 21 22 23  21 22 23 24 25 26 27
27 28 29 30 31        24 25 26 27 28 29 30  28 29 30
31
October               November              December
Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa  Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa  Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa
1  2  3  4                     1      1  2  3  4  5  6
5  6  7  8  9 10 11   2  3  4  5  6  7  8   7  8  9 10 11 12 13
12 13 14 15 16 17 18   9 10 11 12 13 14 15  14 15 16 17 18 19 20
19 20 21 22 23 24 25  16 17 18 19 20 21 22  21 22 23 24 25 26 27
26 27 28 29 30 31     23 24 25 26 27 28 29  28 29 30 31
30


When all was said and done -- with the change fee and the fare difference -- the mistake cost me \$100. But it "inspired" me to actually learn a thing or two about cal(1).

TL;DR: RTFM, or you will pay.

CAL(1)
...
A single parameter specifies the year (1 - 5875706) to be displayed; note the year must be fully specified: “cal 89” will not display a calendar
for 1989.

Posted by Alan on Tuesday, March 22, 2011. (Discuss)

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"After a little while I became possessed with the keenest curiosity about the whirl itself. I positively felt a wish to explore its depths, even at the sacrifice I was going to make; and my principal grief was that I should never be able to tell my old companions on shore about the mysteries I should see."

Illustration for Edgar Allan Poe's story "Descent into the Maelstrom" by Harry Clarke, published in 1919.