National Joe Day is a little-known holiday. Although not designated by Congress as an official national holiday, it is celebrated every year on March 27th.
The point of the holiday is for everyone to call himself Joe for at least this one day. (If you’re female, you can become Jo—short for Josephine.)
We’ve all heard of Joe Blow, Average Joe, Ordinary Joe, Lucky Joe, Joe Cool, Good Joe and G.I. Joe. Joe simply stands for the everyman, for the underdog or the common man. By the way, Joe Blow was first recorded as military slang referring to the average working guy.
Curious, I skimmed through our online catalog to see how popular Joe was for book titles and hit the Joe jackpot.
Joe, A Novel by Larry Brown
Joe Ransom is a hard-drinking ex-con pushing fifty who just won’t slow down–not in his pickup, not with a gun, and certainly not with women.
Calico Joe by John Grisham
It’s the summer of 1973, and Joe Castle is the boy wonder of baseball, the greatest rookie anyone has ever seen. The kid from Calico Rock, Arkansas, dazzles Chicago Cubs fans as he hits home run after home run, politely tipping his hat to the crowd as he shatters all rookie records.
The Book of Joe by Jonathan Tropper
Right after high school, Joe Goffman left sleepy Bush Falls, Connecticut and never looked back. Then he wrote a novel savaging everything in town, a novel that became a national bestseller and a huge hit movie. Fifteen years later, Joe is struggling to avoid the sophomore slump with his next novel when he gets a call: his father’s had a stroke, so it’s back to Bush Falls for the town’s most famous pariah.
Silent Joe by T. Jefferson Parker
Joe Trona spends his days as a deputy for the Orange County sheriff’s department and his nights as an aide to Will Trona, the influential politician who rescued him from the Hillside Children’s Home. An expert in firearms and martial arts, Joe has been backing Will up for a long time. Still, his skill isn’t enough to keep Will alive, and when his father is killed right in front of Joe’s eyes, the young deputy vows to avenge him.
Joe College by Tom Perrotta
Danny, a Yale junior, is spending Spring break behind the wheel of the Roach Coach, his father’s lunch truck, which plies the parking lots of office parks in central New Jersey, using the time to try and make sense of a love life that’s gotten a little complicated. A comic journey into the dark side of love, higher education and food service.
Where is Joe Merchant? A Novel Tale by Jimmy Buffett
Where is Joe Merchant? That’s what his sister, Trevor Kane, the hemorrhoid-ointment heiress, wants to know. For Desdemona, Merchant is the missing link in her ongoing communications with space aliens. Tabloid journalist Rudy Breno only cares that Merchant gets bigger headlines than Elvis. And for renegade seaplane pilot Frank Bama, the mystery of the presumed-dead-but-often-sighted rock star is turning his life upside down.
Joe Victim: A Thriller by Paul Cleave
Joe Middleton’s story is this: He doesn’t remember killing anyone, so there’ s no way a jury can convict him of serial murder. He calls himself Joe Victim, trying, as he awaits trial, to convince the psychiatrists that he wasn’t in control of his actions, trusting that the system will save him in the end.
And if that doesn’t satisfy your Joe longings, there are entire series devoted to Joes:
Joe Burgess mysteries by Kate Flora
Joe DeMarco novels by Mike Lawson
Joe Grey mysteries by Shirley Rousseau Murphy
Joe Gunther novels by Archer Mayor
Joe Kurtz novels by Dan Simmons
Joe Ledger novels by Jonathan Maberry
Joe Pike novels by Robert Crais
Joe Rush novels by James Abel
Joe Sandilands mysteries by Barbara Cleverly
So call yourself Joe, buy a cup of Joe, and peruse one of the many Joe books, all in celebration of National Joe Day.
(PS. Share this with all the Joes you know and make their day special.)