Captain’s Log 5,985
So it’s Shrove Tuesday. Also Mardi Gras. Also Pancake Day. Without thinking, I celebrated Pancake Day yesterday at a relatively new place in town called Snooze. The pancakes there are works of art. Nothing is simple. I was able to finish one of these and a small bite of another. Soooo good! Way too filling for me.
Pancakes to pine for
I had to research the whole pancake thing because I am not content with standard answers. “Because” is simply not good enough for me. Hence…..Wikipedia to the rescue….. with some editorializing by me……
Like many other European holidays, the pancake day was originally a pagan holiday. NO! Really! A pagan holiday was reworked to fit Christian beliefs? Tell me you are kidding! Before the Christian era, the Slavs believed that the change of seasons was a struggle between Jarilo, the god of vegetation, fertility and springtime, and the evil spirits of cold and darkness. People believed that they had to help Jarilo fight against winter and bring in the spring. The most important part of Shrovetide week (the whole celebration of the arrival of spring lasted one week) was making and eating pancakes. The hot, round pancakes symbolized the sun. The Slavs believed that by eating pancakes, they got the power, light and warmth of the sun. The first pancake was usually put on a window for the spirits of the ancestors. On the last day of Shrovetide week some pancakes and other food were burnt in a bonfire as a sacrifice to the pagan gods.
Who knew? An epic battle between the darkness and the light celebrated with pancakes! What’s not to love? I like the idea of putting a pancake in the window. It’s far easier than putting up a Christmas tree. You could hang it from the drapery rod and let it spin. Or poke holes in it and pretend it’s a dreamcatcher.
I honestly think being a pagan was probably a lot more fun than being an early Christian. I mean….you got to hang pancakes in the window! Does it get any better than that? You also got to dance around in the dawn with antlers on your head! Christianity kind of kaboshed all of that. Only the Catholic bishops and higher up folks get the cool headgear.
If I had antlers, I would definitely dance around in the dawn. Maybe not every day, but at least some of the time. On those happy days when the morning is bursting to say hello. When you can smell promise in the air. On those days. Antlers would be wonderful.