I carved pumpkins yesterday at my Sister's house. I made one that looks like this.
Dane made one with like 8 faces on it. We eventually talked him into just carving 2 of the 8 designs he had drawn on the pumpkin. We also commented on how strange a tradition this whole thing is. I wonder who the first to do it was and what they were thinking? Lets make scary faces on these vegetables!!! Why do I wonder about things anymore when there exists the internet?
Explanation Copied and pasted below thanks to: http://urbanlegends.about.com/od/halloween/ss/halloween_4.htm.
"The phrase "jack o'lantern" is British and dates back to the 17th century, when it meant "man with a lantern" -- a night watchman. It was also a nickname for the natural phenomenon known as ignis fatuus (fool's fire) or "will o' the wisp," the mysterious, flickering lights sometimes seen over wetlands and associated in folklore with fairies and ghosts."
"Over time "jack o'lantern" became a popular term for a homemade object also known as a "turnip lantern," defined by Thomas Darlington in his 1887 volume The Folk-Speech of South Cheshire as "a lantern made by scooping out the inside of a turnip, carving the shell into a rude representation of the human face, and placing a lighted candle inside it." In some parts of Great Britain carrying jack o'lanterns was known as a form of pranksterism. As Darlington writes, "It is a common device of mischievous lads for frightening belated wayfarers on the road." In other locales (or perhaps in earlier times) people carved jack o'lanterns on the eves of All Saints and All Souls Days to represent souls of the dead trapped in Purgatory."
"According to legend, the jack o'lantern was named after a reprobate Irishman called Stingy Jack who tricked the Devil into promising he wouldn't go to hell for his sins. When Jack died he learned he was barred from heaven, so he went down to the gates of hell after all to beg for a final resting place. Wouldn't you know it, the Devil kept his promise, dooming Jack to wander the earth for all eternity with only an ember of hellfire of to light his way. Thenceforth he was known as Jack O'Lantern."
"It wasn't until Irish immigrants brought the custom of carving jack o'lanterns to North America that pumpkins began to be used for that purpose, and not until the late 19th century that pumpkin carving became a Halloween fixture."
Now you are better educated on this holiday tradition thanks to me. Basically the pumpkin is a replacement for a turnip and was originally used as a lantern. It still doesn't explain exactly why they were carving turnips into lanterns in the first place, it seems to me that there should exist better options for lighting your way, but oh well. Don't be a bum...carve a jack o lantern this year. I like this idea.
Speaking of pumpkins, we have a pumpkin pie that has been sitting in our fridge for about 2 weeks now from Village Inn. I better take care of that, its getting to be about that time.....
I watched the Office yesterday night as well...its starting to have to stretch to make "office" jokes. I mean this place obviously does ZERO work whatsoever. They have a party every other day!!! I think that may be why the British one was so superior. When David Brent didn't perform they canned him!
Also, they only did 12 episodes and a finale special so it didn't have to drag on so long. Anyways, while flipping channels I ran into this commercial twice tonight.
As of tonight I have purchased two of these things. I hope I don't see that commercial again, because I am running out of space for them! Dang clever advertisers convincing me with their amazing selling tactics. I mean how could I pass it up? DONT USE A POTATO PEELER!! And look! Its not even cutting a balloon!! I hope no one I know uses a potato peeler on their feet. Also, there should be some sort of law against showing what the narrator refers to as "nasty foot shavings" on national television, kind of like they are not supposed to show dead bodies on the news. AAAARGGGH
Thats it for today. Hope you liked the History Lesson.