I have mixed feelings about Easter Egg Hunts. I can remember when literally thousands of kids lined up behind a starting line on the Saturday before Easter to run through a local park hunting for plastic-wrapped pieces of brightly colored, petrified marshmallow. Mostly, I remember being the little, slow, fat kid who often times ended up with no eggs. In reality, in the early 50’s, nobody cared if you didn’t get any eggs but you. If you ended up with an empty easter basket or in my case, an empty paper sack, it was your problem not the organizer’s, society’s, or your parent’s. My parents probably said something like “better luck next time.” But they absolutely did not rush me to the psychologist or stop at the store on the way home and buy me replacement eggs. Did I enjoy not getting any eggs? Absolutely not. Did I learn anything from it? Most certainly. I learned over the years of being “egged on” by failure, to stop running and start looking for those hidden eggs that were not scattered haphazardly on the ground. I learned that if I spent time observing before the start, I could see where there might be some hidden eggs that others would pass by with their eyes fixed on only the obvious and easily obtained eggs. I learned that life, at least in Easter egg hunts, was significantly easier for the quickest, largest, most agile and the most aggressive children, but that less aggressive and slower eggers could do almost as well by thinking instead of running after the next easy egg. I will admit that I never ended up with as many eggs as the quicker kids, but I’m sure that my eggs tasted just as good and I didn’t have to chase all over the park to get them.
Easter egg hunts evolved into an in-house affair in our family. The “Easter Bunny” would hide eggs in the house and we would hunt for them when we woke up in the morning, while the Easter Bunny’s proxy (Dad) sat around and made comments about the fact that there were still three eggs in plain sight that we hadn’t found. He took great joy during the following months in pointing out that there were at least “X” number of eggs we hadn’t found, while tendering little hints as to their whereabouts. Most years at least one egg would escape detection until the following Easter.
One Easter, the Easter Bunny apparently ran out of eggs (and the stores were closed) so in a stroke of monetary genius the Easter Bunny hid nickels instead of eggs. Apparently the Easter Bunny just happened to have a role of nickels when he/she ran out of eggs. Which brings up another point, have you ever considered the gender of the Easter Bunny? I just realized that I have always thought of the Easter Bunny as being male, but when I think about it, this whole egg thing makes we wonder a little bit. A male rabbit laying eggs is a big enough problem, but think about the difficulties involved in laying a roll of nickels.