#19 – Use contemporary references
It is the dawning of April 5, 2012. The moon is waxing full. The High Holy Days are upon us.
It sure seemed like Jupiter was aligned with Mars. Maybe it was. But in my world, all the holidays fell within a few days of each other. What holidays, you might say? Well….. (deep subject)
Passover began at sundown on April 6. My Jewish friends – and some of my Christian ones too – were describing the fun they had at Seder on Friday evening. I’ve been to Seder before and enjoyed the food and the festivities. Envy set in when I heard my friends eating Charoset – a mixture of wine, apple, sugar and cinnamon. The mixture represented the mortar used by the Jews to build up Egypt in slavery. It’s about the only way you can get matzo down your throat after about 5 or 6 days of Passover.
By the way, I sure hope I spelled “Charoset” correctly. When I googled the word, about 6 different spellings pulled up. Oy!!! Vey!!!
Christians celebrated the Pascal mystery this past weekend, all at the same time. April 5 was Holy Thursday, when Christians honor the last Passover that Jesus Christ celebrated on earth. On April 6, Christians honor the day Jesus was crucified. On April 8, Christians celebrated Jesus’ Resurrection. Along with the secular Easter Bunny, and spring symbols, the Christians celebrate with traditional foods. Eating is not as ceremonial as a Seder. But the food is usually consumed with family and friends.
Christians and Jews – looks like we have a lot of shared history.
April 5 brought another High Holy Day, of sorts. Many major league baseball teams had their opening day games. The Phillies – one of several teams I follow – played in Pittsburgh that day. The Orioles – my hometown team now – played on Good Friday. There was a great deal of ceremony that accompanied all baseball games over the weekend. Traditional foods too… lots of hot dogs, crab cakes, brats, etc.
Now, it may seem sacrilegious to compare Passover, Easter and baseball. But they all came together for a reason. Not a hand-holding Kumbaya moment. But think about it.
Passover is the story of hope and freedom. Easter is the story of hope and freedom. Both are stories of letting go and moving on to something better. Both are religion for some and history for all.
Where does baseball fit in here? In baseball, last year and the Cardinals winning the Series was….so last year. Everything is new now. Some players had to let go and move on to new teams. All old records are history. It all starts over again new with opening day. Some teams even play to resurrect their fan bases and put more butts in the stadium seats. It’s a time for players to make some history.
And for fans, it can be a religious experience.
All of these holidays happen in Spring, at time when things renew and life begins again. Last year is last year – history.
And in my world, this year my Easter celebration was quiet, with family. We did not indulge in too much chocolate. It only took me 8 hours before I started finding that blasted Eastroturf sticking to all my clothes, the dog, and even inside the washer. My Orioles started the season with 3 wins, so there is hope this year. They were in first place longer than from Game 1 to Game 2. And I wondered how long it would take my Jewish friends to get sick of matzo. I remembered when I taught in a high school located in a predominantly Jewish community. Most kids made it through the Seder and 2 or 3 days after. Then the complaints about lotsa matzo started. Can I get another Oy Vey?
Holidays are over and we are now back to life in the spring moments. And now I check my hiding places for more hidden Vitamin M (m&m’s). Ok, EB, where did you hide them? This chocoholic needs a hit.