Eat your pancakes today.
It is Shrove Tuesday, Fat Tuesday or Mardi Gras.
the last blowout before Lent
What are you giving up? I am told that early Christians would give up rich and fatty foods during the Lenten season, they would commemorate Shrove Tuesday by using up ingredients like milk and eggs for one last indulgence.
According to the Newfoundland and Labrador Heritage Website "Pancake Night, or Shrove Tuesday, is typical of Newfoundland calendar customs. Derived from widespread customs in European traditions, and shaped as much by religious beliefs as by traditional divinational activities, it is a mixture of traditions, evolving continuously. Shrove Tuesday (named for the religious practice of confessing one's sins and being "shriven" or "shrove" by the priest immediately before Lent began) was a time to use up as many as possible of the foods banned during Lent: meat products in particular, including butter and eggs. Pancakes were a simple way to use these foods, and one that could entertain the family. Objects with symbolic value are cooked in the pancakes, and those who eat them, especially children, take part in a divinatory game as part of the meal. The person who receives each item interprets the gift according to the tradition: a coin means the person finding it will be rich; a pencil stub means he/she will be a teacher; a holy medal means they will join a religious order; a nail that they will be (or marry) a carpenter, and so on (cf. Hiscock 1990:9)."
I am looking forward to a nice feed of pancakes and sausages for supper. With any luck we will mix it up with some Jalepeno corn fritters as well.
A little pancake humor:
It was Shrove Tuesday and Mrs Thomas was making pancakes for her sons, Aaron 6, and Kelvin 8.
As usual, the brothers began to argue over who should get the first pancake. Their mother saw a wonderful opportunity for a moral lesson.
'If Jesus were sitting at the table, He would say, "Let my brother have the first pancake".'
Quick as a flash Kelvin turned to Aaron and said, 'Aaron, today you can be Jesus!'