Since this is Good Friday, and Easter is just a couple days away, I may as well explain something to you.
Easter has its very little quirky traditions. On the surface and far below. And when rabbits, and chickens, and pigs and bees are concerned, you have the whole truth.
You see, it all started with a foot race. Not on Good Friday, but on Maundy Thursday…. which is also known as Holy Thursday. For those of you who do not know, Maundy Thursday is a Christian observance in the United States.
The Thursday during Holy Week. And…. It commemorates Jesus Christ’s last supper and the initiation of Holy Communion (the Eucharist), observed in many Christian churches.
But in 1433, there was a big foot race. The winner got to pick what was going to be for dinner at the Great Black Forest Maundy Thursday Dinner. So Alfred Banderheusen, from the Eastern side of the Black Woods, decided to race his world class rabbit, Hans. Hans the Rabbit. From the East.
And Gottfried Desterhein, from the Western Wood, picked his barnyard chicken, Henrietta. Henny, the Hen. Of the West.
It was a big dang deal. Hans and Henny geared up at the starting line, and BANG. Off they went… on a mad 200 yard dash. Hans pulled out early, but midway through the race, Henny pecked the living hollyhocks out of Hans’ tail. Mortified, he slowed, and blushed. He started blushing so heavily, he could barely run. And Henny just hustled her way right across the finish line.
Which meant…. Gottfried was the guy. HE got to pick the meal. And you guessed it. Ham. Cheesy Potatoes. Green Beans.
Now this is where the Hans the Rabbit started stealing all the chicken eggs. Not only Henny’s, but every chicken. Then, to hide his tracks, he colored those eggs, so that the chickens wouldn’t recognize them. Red, Yellow, Blue, Green. And he put them in baskets, and scattered them throughout the woods.
All because Henny pecked his tail and won the race. Of course, the real loser in the story, is the pig. He ended up on the dinner table. And Black Forest Ham would not be good enough. The Bees of the Woods said it needed Honey when it baked.
And year, after year, the Hans the Rabbit kept stealing the eggs, and scattering them about. And that is how the legend of the Easter Bunny began. The chicken owner, Gottried, did not know the bunny was stealing the eggs. In fact, he felt bad for Hans. Hence the Carrot Cake came into existence. Gottfried commissioned his chef to make a cake the rabbit would love.
Again, the pig was the real loser here.
… and…. Easter’s on its way……