Monday, October 2, 2006

Christmas Pickle Debunked

In response to the Native-ity scene, Dr. M requests clarification of the Christmas Pickle, which her catalog claims is "an old German tradition," and she suspects is... not.

Miss Bender gleefully rubs her hands together (you know perfectly well Miss Bender's alter ego could never perform such an act, but she will let Miss Bender do so for poetic license), cracks her knuckles (oh yes, she does indeed do that) and grabs the threads.

Terry's Village writes, "European tradition dictates that the pickle is to be hidden in your decorated Christmas tree, and the first child to find the pickle is rewarded with an extra gift from Santa."

1. You would think Europe's track record on dictating would be a turnoff
2. You are perhaps thinking of the Afikoman.
If you hadn't been so zealously dictating things, Europe, you might know that.

Anyway. contains an article called "German Misnomers, Myths and Mistakes." Myth #11 is Die Weihnachtsgurke. You almost want it to be true, don't you?

Unfortunately, this tale can not be validated by actual Germans. Glass pickle ornaments can be traced to FW Woolworth, who sold them as early as 1880, and they were imported from Germany, where the fashion in glass-blowing also included fruit and bread-shaped ornaments. This being a peak period for Victoriana in the US, when most of our Christmas traditions were defined (thanks for the trees, Prince Albert), it is highly likely that the "German tradition" just made them more marketable.

The Terry's Village pickle is under $5. So start a tradition.
Please also enjoy the Torah Tots webpage of Chanukah games.
Enjoy everything about Torah Tots. Enjoy saying Torah Tots.

Also on the myth list
#10 - Hilter and Jesse Owens - Hitler wasn't there that day.
And FDR didn't invite Owens to the White House either.

Now to unravel that Peppermint pig... (note: "also available - replacement pig" excellent)

1 comment:

  1. Miss Bender,
    Thanks so much for investigating this subject. I just don't understand how pickles and pigs get involved with the celebration of the birth of Christ. (Now if the pickle was wrapped in swaddling clothes and placed in a manger with the pig in a Santa hat standing guard, I might buy it...)


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