Why isn’t Easter like Christmas?

Let’s get something straight right from the start of the this blog post. I’m not a religious person and anything that I talk about today is not referring to the religious aspects of the holiday celebrations. Now that that is established (always seems strange when you actually use the same word twice next to each other) I wanted to talk about Easter. Currently we are enjoying the four day break which is the Easter weekend. Today, although it is Saturday, many of us have been confused into thinking that it is already Sunday due to having Friday off work. However, when you look and compare the Easter holidays and the Christmas holidays they have many things in common and yet, they are completely different. Is Easter slowly disappearing as a holiday celebration? Well that is what this waffle is about…

I blogged awhile ago about how much I hate this time of the year and how, for me, it goes down hill from now on. Although it is the Easter weekend and most of the workforce gets two extra days off work, the clocks go forward tonight, so we lose an hour’s sleep and to almost add insult to injury, because of it is Easter Sunday, Starbucks will be shut tomorrow so I won’t have anywhere to sit and write my blog. The only other time that the store is closed is, of course, Christmas Day and, although I do not begrudge them having two days off at all, I do wonder why Easter is not as big of a holiday as Christmas is since it has so many things in common. Surely it has the potential and could be something much bigger.

  • Decorations and Traditions – Both of the holidays are based around a Christian festival, Christmas being the birth of Jesus and Easter being the death and subsequent resurrection and both have a range of songs/carols associated with the celebration. Often, when I go round to my mum’s house during the Easter period, she actually has a decoration up. It would appear to be a piece of dead twig/tree, which is firmly planted in a pot. Although it pales into insignificance compared to the the Christmas tree, the twig is decorated with little, colourful eggs, hanging from thread. The shops also appear to decorate their stores during Easter as well, with chicks and fluffy rabbits appearing in windows and on shelves, accompanied with a multitude of eggs. Just like Christmas, Easter also has a wealth of ‘traditions’. Children paint their eggs and enter them into competitions. Hard boiled eggs are rolled down hills and chocolate eggs are hidden around the garden for the Easter Hunt to begin! Just like Santa, the Easter Bunny comes into our homes and leaves the eggs ready for the children who have been good. However, Easter fails to achieve either the commercial hype or the engagement which Christmas does – maybe it is the time of the year?

  • Gifts and Food – I have just come back from the weekly shopping trip and I must say that half my trolley was actually full of Easter eggs. On the shelves there were other gifts that you could buy including giant fluffy bunnies, Easter Bonnets and even chicks engaged in various activities. I also noticed that just like turkeys at Christmas, many of the people were sorting through the meat section to get the best lamb deal. It would appear that just like turkeys might dislike Christmas, Easter is a time when lambs should go off and hide at the back of the pen! Although the gifts would appear to be quite limited, Easter does share the idea of giving gifts, just like Christmas and I am sure, with some clever marketing, the gift ideas could be extended to including a larger range…maybe even focusing on a new life and things for engaging with a new life? I guess gym membership would do a roaring trade!

  • Family and Friends – Christmas is a time for family, getting together to eat and enjoy the season’s celebration. When I was growing up, I remember that Easter Sunday did share this sense of family, with everyone getting together to enjoy the Easter meal of lamb etc. As time has progressed, this has sadly lapsed and now it appears to pass uneventfully. At work, we go out for Christmas work meals and many people celebrate Christmas over and over again, although, Easter just doesn’t appear to have this impact. Indeed, it would appear that it is slowly regressing into something which has little or no celebratory value. As a family we no longer ‘get together’ on Easter Sunday – how many more families have decided to ‘forego’ this tradition I wonder?

  • For me, Easter has the potential to be another huge celebration, starting a new period in people’s lives, almost like new year’s resolutions all over again. While Easter appears to be diminishing, other celebrations seem to be gathering momentum. Halloween is definitely gaining in popularity fueled by the American version of the holiday and even bonfire night seems to be more of a getting together holiday than Easter. Maybe the popularity of a holiday rests with the children. By engaging and involving the children more with the Easter celebrations would it be possible to increase its ‘size’ and impact. Many might say that they don’t want another commercially hyped holiday, others might think that a weekend just relaxing is perfect for this time of the year. I like Christmas, I like the lead up to it, I like the hype and the shopping and the carols and, if it was possible to have this twice a year, then I would definitely be willing to give it ago. Of course, I might just be saying this because I want more presents…

    So what are your views about Easter? Do you celebrate it with your family? Do you buy everyone Easter eggs or is it just a long weekend to look forward to? As always, if you have any comments then it would be great to hear from you, so please add them in the comments below or send them to me on any of my social media sites.

    You can keep up to date with my content by following me on Twitch, Twitter and Facebook. If you are interested in joining or playing Minecraft, then you can join the server and website here. Of course any subscribers to my YouTube channel are always appreciated.

    2 comments for “Let Me In! – Simon’s Cat – YouTube

    1. February 19, 2017 at 2:00 pm

      Would be cool to play an one off, one of the dungeon crawls you made! Maybe the 8 level one!!!

    2. March 21, 2017 at 12:05 am

      I miss those early days so much. The current state of rpg’s , the rpg xubculture if you like, doesn’t feel like it did back then. I can’t quite put my finger on it.

      I was introduced to Advanced D&D 1st Edition, by my sisters boyfriend (the BEST boyfriend of the many she had IMHO..), who showed me S3 Expedition to the Barrier Peaks module after discovering I enjoyed computer based adventure games, I was hooked immediately and it wasn’t too long before I was hanging around the local game shop, Games Gallery, from which I was invited to join in a game run by the assistant manager, who was to become my long and good friend Steve, who was coincidentally, the reason I got to work at the local branch of Games Workshop for a time. Working there, in those days, before it became a Warhammer only shop, was amazing. It was the proverbial kid in the sweet shop!. Staff discount made it even sweeter – 50% off GW’s own products, and 25% off everything else. We also ran a great rpg club, with about 60-80 members at its peak.
      I was always the GM for my main group as no one else had the time it took to prepare a game properly, though after a few changes to the group, and people from the club popping up, I eventually got to play. Games by a company called Fantasy Games Unlimited (FGU) were very popular in all of my groups. FGU sold games such as Bushido, Aftermath,Space Opera, Chivalry & Sorcery, Freedom Fighters, and Bunnies & Burrows, but there were many many more games, by many different companies, covering all sorts of genres – and I still have them all. Many were, as was the style back then, table and chart and rule HEAVY. We loved that. Comparing themto the current crop of “rules lite” systems, I would certainly go back to the old games instead. We played these games sometimes 5 days a week, as for a time we were all unemployed. It was all we did.
      I often spent days creating scenarios, making maps, creating player characters as well as npc’s. I found it quite therapeutic, as is miniature painting – thousands of the little buggers packed away testify to the time I spent doing it. My “toy soldiers” as my brother in law calls them…
      I used to get quite attached to my favourite characters, and whilst one or two died over the decades, most did not.
      For almost all of my characters I would go overboard by most people’s standards. I like to have an image for my characters, whether a photo or artwork. Sometimes I will see an image and that is the base for the whole character, built around the image.
      I always believed as a player, that giving the GM a detailed background, list of goals, motivations, friends, contacts and enemies, will help the GM bring my character into the game more, by using some of what I have given him in the game. As a GM I like to see what players come up with for their characters, and will often use it in the game. It involves the player more, makes the game more personal if part of the game is suddenly about them, and it can help the players become more invested in their characters.
      For myself, I would often map out the characters home, create a family tree, siblings, etc.
      For our Star Trek RPG (by FASA Corp), I created the whole crew of a 500+ personnel star ship… All as detailed player characters. Unnecessary and a bit OTT I know, but it helped bring every department on the ship alive, every member of the landing party was a person not simply a red shirt.

      I am often bemused whilst watching streams when I see the gm of a streamed game pull some “new” idea out of his box of tricks, and the players are like “wow!”, “that’s original”, “I would never have thought of doing it that way!”, knowing we did it 30-40 years ago.

      The games my most recent group and I played/ran, were very detailed games with a lot of depth. Quite dark games too, mature themed, and often very emotional and intense. Having played with the same people for nigh on 20 years, you create a bond, a closeness and familiarity that allows you to communicate in a way you couldn’t, with people you don’t know very well.
      I have been brought to tears several times in recent years during the last (decade long) game we played ,as some scenes were simply too emotional or powerful, overwhelming (GM was a bastard – but an EXCELLENT GM).

      Sadly the group folded, but the GM offered to keep the game going for just me, which he did for a few years, which to be honest I really needed, as it helped me through a bad depression at that time).
      Over the years I have experienced a lot of things because of rpg’s, and made some great friends, too. I have a lot to be grateful for, regarding rpg’s. I was discussing with my brother in law, my collection of rpg’s and miniatures. When he realised how much they are worth, (some regularly sell for £100’s!) he always tells me to sell sell sell. He doesn’t grasp what they mean to me .
      Yet I won’t. Part of me hopes and prays that I will get a local group together (even some of the old group!) and start using them again. But aside from that, as my memory fails, little by little each year, these boxes and books and miniatures on the shelves are my constant reminders of happy and sad and exciting moments, and great fun, and more importantly, great friends.

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *