Friday, April 18, 2014

Easter is Upon Us - And a Sonnet on a Bonnet?

Another Easter is upon us, so hares my sonnet on a bonnet.

Or not…..
You don’t see a lot of Easter bonnets anymore unless it’s in the Easter parade…on the avenue…Fifth Avenue.

Which is too bad because back when things where…I guess old…or new, before they became old…folks took a lot of pride in their Easter Bonnets…Fifth Avenue or not.

Especially my Uncle Tully, who actually enjoyed the tradition a little too much and took advantage of it all year long.

I’m sure there’s some sort of religious significance to the whole thing, so I won’t make fun…too much. But all I’m saying was a fun tradition that’s gone the way of a lot of fun holiday traditions…like hunting for peanut butter and mint jelly sandwiches on Easter morning.


That wasn’t one of your traditions?

Of course it wasn’t…that wasn’t anybody’s tradition…I don’t even know why I brought it up.

Seriously, I don’t …so let’s just drop it!

Of course, the traditional, traditional Easter traditions—at least in our house— were things like coloring Easter eggs, which I looked forward to every year—still do—because, let’s face it, who doesn’t like playing with food coloring.

You’ve never had broccoli until you’ve had purple broccoli.

Back then, my family went pretty conservative when it came to colors.  You know the basics: red, green, blue and yellow.

Sometimes, if you were feeling funky creative you would hold only half the egg in one color then dip the other half into another color to make a two color egg.

Yeah…crazy right?

But you know me, always the rebel…when I got down to my last few eggs I would often experiment with other hues and mix a bunch of colors together just to see if I could strike lighting in a bottle and discover a brand new, breathtaking, vibrant tint.

Although, unfortunately, I usually ended up with various shades of brown….

Still…one of these days….

Later, they came out with some of these decorative sticker things you could apply to your eggs, which—I don’t know—somehow always seemed like a cheat to me.

I was more of a hand drawn crayon colored bunnies and chicken guy, which I would scratch onto the side of my egg…if there is such a thing as an egg side, other than bacon.

I have to admit, though, I haven’t kept up to date with modern Easter egg decorating trends—you know, because I’ve been focused more on my pudding art—so I can’t really say if the old ways are the best ways.

But they were the best for me and I’ll leave it at that.

Besides Easter egg art is a personal choice…and that’s the way it should be.

Of course another fun Easter tradition has always been the Easter egg hunt, which can take many forms…inside…outside…up on the neighbors roof.

What…why else would those squirrels have been running around up there?  It was a legitimate assumption.

As our tradition went, after everyone was asleep, the Easter Bunny would come into our house, pop open a few Bud's, and hide all of our newly colored eggs in various places around the living room, but only the  living room.

And for some reason we just accepted that as fact and didn’t have a problem with it.

We were all strangely okay with the idea of curious characters, from the Easter Bunny to the Tooth fairy, roaming our halls at night…I mean, again, unless it was Uncle Tully parading around in one of his Bonnets, which did disturb us.

Unfortunately, as with most childhood marvels, when I grew older the idea of this over developed Easter Bunny hiding eggs around my house seemed a bit farfetched.  I mean Santa, I could buy…maybe even a Leprechaun or two…but a bunny on steroids?

I don’t think so….

Besides, I knew my mom wouldn’t stand for that, especially after she just had the carpets cleaned.

I mean have you seen what kind of trail a rabbit leaves behind?

Anyway, we continued to play along, even after we knew…one, because it was fun…and two, it was even more fun watching my dad sweat every year after we were only able to find 10 of the 12 hidden eggs.

In fact, one 4th of July we actually found one wayward egg crammed into the corner of the Barco Lounger.

“So it wasn’t Uncle Tully that smelled all this time!”

After the hunt, we would all dress up in these brand new, oddly grown up looking clothes, whereupon we were then dragged off to church to meet with the nuns and other kids, also dressed in the same sort of strange holiday regalia.

Kind of like a 1960’s convention of little Mad Men, Don Drapers and Peggy Olsons lining up in pairs, outside, on the street.

Then, after a couple of Manhattans, it was off to Grandma’s house for all kinds of food and festivities, which sometimes included hunting for more eggs, rolling eggs, tossing eggs, even juggling eggs…or just about any activity that had to do with eggs…except actually eating eggs…at least until later...once the ritualistic eating of our Chocolate Easter Bunnies was completed.

We would also join with our many cousins to put our new found Easter suits and dresses to the test, featuring various feats of strength and agility…many of which involved grass stains.

So those are just a few of the various Easter Traditions that took place in my family, when I was growing up.

I’m sure you all have your own memories and similar traditions, minus Uncle Tully.

Speaking of which...we were finally able to convince him after many years of pleading to abandon the Bonnet, which he did in favor of the full bunny outfit.

So if you’re looking out your window early Sunday morning, and you happen to see a rather large bunny, hippity, hopping all the way, don’t be alarmed…it’s probably just Uncle Tully, getting home late from his favorite hangout.

But just in case it’s not…maybe you should get to bed and pull the covers up over your head, nice and tight.

And, in the morning, check between all the little nooks and crannies of your couches, chairs, vases, plants, curtains, lampshades, shoes and any other small obscure, hiding places in your living room, where a large overgrown Lepus curpaeums might hide a small oblong shaped object, that will begin to smell like an over ripened Uncle by the 4th of July, if you don’t….

And have a great holiday while you’re at it!

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  1. We were gifted with chocolate eggs decorated like those of the Russian Tzars - but no Easter egg hunt. Church attendance required a visit to the Mission Church in Boston where the organ selections were magnificent, as was the church itself, altar resplendent with masses of lilies. The latter part of the morning: viewing the parade down the midsection of Commonwealth Avenue, all participants sporting the latest fashions for spring. A happy Easter to you, Brian, a man singularly gifted.

    1. Thanks, Joan. Your my Fav of Fav's.
      Same to you and yours. I hope you're writing your always put me right back in time with you!


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