Many of my non-Northwest friends have never heard of this holiday. You haven’t either? It’s otherwise known as NOID – “National Outdoor Intercourse Day”. The origins are sketchy, but my alma mater, Washington State University claims it. Nearby University of Idaho also claims it as well as a handful of other Northwest colleges. WSU doesn’t have a lot of claims to fame, but there are a few. For one, WSU has produced some damn fine quarterbacks (Mark Rypien and Drew Bledsoe to name a couple). And Edward R. Murrow is one famous graduate, and also the namesake for the highly regarded Communications School. Tom Tuttle from Tacoma, Washington chants the WSU fight song in the movie “Volunteers”. And, we’ve been called dorkiest fan base in America because we manage to get the Washington State University Flag on every episode of ESPN’s Game Day since 2003 (because they refuse to go to Pullman). It was even spotted at the Master’s Tournament this year. Cougar fans have pride, even when their team sucks. And, winning or losing, they are nice. (See my previous post for some further context on this). They have fun and know how to party. You can be anywhere in the world and see somebody with a Cougar logo on and yell out “Go Cougs” and you’ll have an instant friend.
Back to the 8th of May: I don’t know why it started — I’m not sure anyone really does. But, I have heard that the University had banned blankets from the grassy areas because they were afraid that something other than picnicking or studying was going on. So, in true college student rebellious fashion, the students declared the 69th day of March to be an unofficial holiday. I suppose that they could have just picked the 69th day of the year — but that is in March and it’s cold in Pullman in March. Given the free-spirited, laid back, party atmosphere of the school, it makes perfect sense that the 8th of May would have it’s origins there. So, other universities can claim it, but I’m going with the WSU folklore.
When I was in school we just called it outdoor sex day. I was actually shocked to discover that it had an acronym “NOID”, with N standing for “National“. And today, I’ve actually heard people call it “International“.
And suddenly, the WSU tagline takes on a whole new meaning:
So, whether you partake in the holiday or not — there’s a little bit of Northwest history for you.