We don’t really do Easter egg hunts in my family anymore now that I’m old enough to hunt and kill an animal in most states in America. I probably wouldn’t, but it’s nice to know that if society reached a stage where it was necessary for me to hunt and kill an animal, I’d possess the legal level of maturity required to watch it die in front of my own eyes as a result of my actions.
When we were kids, my mum used to hide Easter eggs around the garden. My sister, me, and our cousin Alex would wait eagerly in my bedroom, until we were told we could come out and find them. That’s a nice image, but at 10, 13 and 16, we were mentally preparing ourselves for a low budget version of The Hunger Games.
It felt like we were waiting for ages, but considering she also had to hide the moral implications of an arrogant middle class tradition in actively hiding food to forge a sense of joy once it’s been found again, it was bound to be a pretty lengthy procedure.
The above is an actual dead rabbit from La Regle Du Jeu, Jean Renoir’s 1939 rom-com. If you watch the clip online, you can literally see this rabbit get shot and die. He also makes a similar point about the bourgeoisie, but in French.
My sister and I bumbled around, often mistaking slightly rounded pebbles for eggs, suspiciously digging a bit into the ground in case mum was cunning enough to plant the eggs for next year, blissfully ignorant in a garden that now housed the scene of a national dystopian jibe at the third world.
Meanwhile, mum had to physically tie our cousin Alex’s hands together, so we had some chance before he was unleashed into the wasteland and remorselessly stripped it for goods, shovelling eggs into a children’s wicker basket.
Nowadays, sometimes at like 5pm on a Sunday my mum takes us to M&S to find all the reduced yellow label food. That’s sort of like an Easter egg hunt, if you pretend an Easter egg is the same thing as reduced garlic mashed potato.