Zapping Peeps and rapping bunnies
I don’t know about you, but if I see one more website demonstrating how to explode marshmallow Peeps in a microwave, I may open up a Peeps Sanctuary here in the High Country.The internet doesn’t yield quite as many entertaining gems for Easter as it does for other holidays. Other than the basic kiddie sites where you can email the Easter Bunny or create rabbit ears out of coat hangers (headgear every kid wants to wear to church Easter morning, but never gets to), most of the websites have to do with creative ways to destroy marshmallow Peeps.In addition to basic Peeps nuking, there are also ideas for interior decorating with Peeps, recipes for “Peeps Flambé” (pretty self-explanatory), and official rules for Peeps Badminton when you’re done eating.
It all makes me feel that we’ve gotten so darn health conscious, we’ve forgotten one pivotal thing: candy is meant to be EATEN! When you think of the secular aspects of Easter in America, it all pretty much boils down to candy – not necessarily a bad thing, but I’ve always felt that our Easter traditions were somewhat lacking in imagination. In Ireland, for instance, they used to tie a dead (one hopes) herring onto a stick and parade it through the streets. There was actually some rational motivation behind this. The Irish Catholics weren’t allowed to eat meat during the weeks of Lent, but had to replace it with herring, which almost bankrupt the butchers and made everyone else pretty sick besides. On Easter Monday, their stomachs full of corned beef and ham, the Irish showed their full appreciation for the herring-on-a-stick by beating the poor thing to a pulp and throwing it into the sea. Nowadays, this custom seems to have died out, probably ended by herring rights activists. At least over here, we only torture Peeps at Easter.
My favorite Easter custom is in Bulgaria. Instead of hiding their Easter eggs, Bulgarians throw them at each other. Egg fights erupt all over Bulgaria on Easter morning, and the last person standing with an unbroken egg is the winner. So far, the egg rights activists haven’t cottoned onto this one yet.The Wackiest Easter Award, however, goes to Hallaton, a village in Leicestershire, England. Back in 1770, the Lady of the Manor was almost gored by a raging bull, but was rescued (intentionally or not, no one knows) by a hare running across the bull’s path. In gratitude, she donated land to the town, with the proviso that the parish priest should give out two hare pies and bottles of ale to the villagers every Easter.What a great way to thank the hare – making pies out of his ancestors!
Anyway, the British aren’t ones to let a tradition like that get away without tacking on a little weirdness of their own. For the last 236 years, Hallatonians have gathered together on Easter Monday for the Tossing of the Hare Pie. Afterwards, the highlight of the day, Bottle Kicking, begins. That’s where the villagers spend the next eight hours or so kicking bottles of beer all the way to the next village. According to the website, “There are numerous hedges, lanes, ditches, and even barbed wire, and broken bones are fairly common.”This sounds like a great idea for a Colorado High Country tradition – or perhaps it could become an annual festival in Manitou Springs.Anyway, back to the internet. When you’re tired of looking up wacky world traditions or creative ways to destroy Peeps, you can always check out the best offering of the season, the Bunny Rap website. Just Google “Easter Bunny Rap” and take your pick of downloads. I can definitely say that it has replaced the 1985 Chicago Bears’ “Superbowl Shuffle” as my favorite rap song of all time.Happy Easter!
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