Sunday, 5 April 2015

Easter Traditions - Part One

Pace-Egging
There is an Easter tradition in England known as Pace-Egging, where kids would roll decorated hard-boiled eggs down a hill. The kid who rolled it the furthest, or fastest, or highest, or deepest, or something-est, would win a prize - they'd be allowed to eat a hard-boiled egg. Yummy!


Many other countries such as Germany, Egypt, Netherlands, Denmark and Narnia, all have a similar tradition known as the Easter Egg roll.


In England it dates back hundreds of years, and could be symbolic of the rolling of the giant chocolate egg away from the tomb of Jesus before his resurrection. Or, as is more likely, it's to do with the tradition of rolling babies down a hill to symbolise knew life and the struggles a mother goes through in childbirth. If the baby makes it to the bottom of the hill, it's allowed to drink its weight in beer as a prize. There'd be dancing, karaoke, piddling on a garden gnome, usually from the roof of a house, and then the night ended with the babies throwing hedgehogs at stray cats, followed by a doner kebab.


In reality, we really have no idea why the heck it started. But baby-rolling is as good an explanation as any other.


About three hundred years ago babies were replaced with an egg because, well, apparently rolling babies down a hill is wrong. Who knew?


The original tradition involved decorating a hardboiled egg and rolling it down a grassy hill. There are some towns in England that still use hard-boiled eggs, but some have since switched to chocolate eggs. In an unrelated fact, the number of accidents involving children diving after chocolate-eggs-thrown-down-a-hill increased one-hundred-fold.


"What? They're really chocolate eggs? Not hard-boiled? Seriously? Chocolate? You let me roll a chocolate egg down the hill? You git. Come back little chocolate eggs. I'll save you."


Easter Egg Push
In America there is an annual tradition of the Easter Egg Push. Every Easter Monday the President gathers hundreds of kids on the White House lawn, who have had to go through an extensive and thorough background check and security screening, and forces them to push an egg across the grass with a long-handled spoon.


The tradition is believed to have been started by the wife of President James Madison, Dolley Madison, in 1814, and was originally held in the grounds of the US Capitol, the seat of the US Congress.


However, it was moved to the White House lawn in 1877 when Congress decided they hated children. Yes, the US Congress hates children (I mean, hated children, past tense. They may like them now).


They also hated Fun.


And they specifically hated children having fun.


Since they couldn't do anything about banning children having fun, and they spent a load of money researching whether they could, they instead made sure children couldn't have fun within sight and earshot of them. So they passed a law making it illegal to use the grounds of the US Capitol as a children's playground.


"Get off our grass, you horrible kids."


On the 13th April, 2009, President Obama and his wife ... (err, she's called, hang on, it'll come to me, it begins with an "M". Oh, yes) ... Mrs Obama, hosted their first White House Easter egg roll. The theme "Let’s go play" was meant to encourage young people to lead healthy, active lives. However, most of the kids ignored that and stuffed their faces with chocolate eggs and candy. Because who wants to live a healthy, active life when there's chocolate? Gobble. Gobble. Gobble.


Click here for Easter Traditions - Part Two
Click here for 5 Fun Facts About Easter Eggs

5 comments:

S.P. Bowers said...

So funny. I didn't know there were so many egg rolling traditions. I can't stand eggs personally so try to avoid egg related activities. Those brittish do like rolling things down a hill, though. My personal favorite is the cheese roll.

Angie Brooksby-Arcangioli said...

Jed, I needed a good laugh. Hopping over from the Reef.

The Greeks are insane.

I'll be back for more egg rolling or other.

That's now three out of all those blogs I haven't already lurked on. Love your voice and humour.

Lilac Shoshani said...

Jed, you are such a funny and brilliant writer. I'm a fan! :-)

KD James said...

Jed, you have accomplished the impossible feat of making history entertaining. AND understanding American politicians.

God, I love your wry sense of humour. Thanks for making me laugh.

Y'know, I'm starting to get a bit concerned that Blogger keeps asking me to prove I'm not a robot, and yet they don't provide an option to say, "YES! Yes, I am!" Rather short-sighted of them.

Jed Cullan said...

Yep, SP, Brits do seem to like rolling things down hills for some reason. I'll have to try and find out why.

Thanks for visiting, Angie.

Thank you, Lilac, glad you're enjoying the blog.

Thanks, KD. Not sure what was harder, making history entertaining or understanding American politicians. Maybe I should do a Fun Facts on them one day?

And with the blogger "Prove you're not a robot", I'm forever surprised when they ask me to prove it on my own blog. That's just weird.