if you take the
ddd mm.dd.yyyy h:mm AM/PM and put it into your Format Cell window
and hit enter it will add it to your Custom Category.
I think that might work for you.
When I enter
7/30/2013 into a cell that has that format painted in it already it converts it to
Tue 07.30.2013 12:00 AM automatically. and it allows me to Sort from oldest to newest or newest to oldest.
I would say that it is Recognizing it as a Date
Check this Out!
this might be the Answer that you may or may not love.
I surfed the Web and found this, but I cannot change the date format on this machine becuase it is locked on my work machine. but I figured that you could give it a try.
Date With Periods
it is a little ways down the page but this is what it says
If you want the format to be the default for all dates, then you are going to have to make a change in the Regional Settings of Windows itself. (Excel draws its default from these settings.) The exact way you do this varies depending on the version of Windows you are using, but in general there is a choice in the Windows Control Panel that allows you to specify regional settings. All you need to do is modify those settings to reflect the date format you want to use. The change will affect not only the display of numbers in Excel, but in other Windows-compliant programs, as well.