I was listening to the episode of Best Movies Never Made about some potential Friday the 13th sequels* we never got this morning and thinking about a man resurrected from the dead whose return is eagerly awaited by many, reminded me that it was Easter. Happy Easter, Jason!**
So I guess this is a good time to give you a little fun fact about myself: I used to be VERY Catholic.
I went to Catholic school for twelve years, including an all boys high school, ensuring that I was awkward around women well into my 20s. My first job was working at my church so I could afford to buy comic books and CDs. (Okay…cassettes.) I went to mass every week. My mom was sure of that. I had no choice. Well, I did, but it was either going on Saturday night or getting up at 6am on Sunday. In retrospect, this is child abuse.
After years of all the school and church and archdiocese sponsored service trips, I just realized one day I didn’t believe in any of it, so I was done. Plus, I was way bigger than my mom, so she couldn’t make me do shit. Well, at first, she was able to convince me to go to mass on Christmas Eve and Easter. I thought it was her way of trying to trick me into saving my soul, but later I came to realize that it was because it was all part of the tradition for her.
Every family has their individual rituals. A big one for mine was always getting stromboli from the local pizza place after Christmas Eve mass. A quick search on the internet has led me to the conclusion that Do Do’s Pizza (or as EVERY friend I ever told about this has called it: Dildo’s) is permanently closed. At least in the location where it used to be. I would dig further, but I’m not driving back to my old neighborhood to be disappointed in something that is five sections deep in the menu.
Those rituals eventually change, no matter how hard people try to hang onto them. You move away from where you grew up, you stop going to church, your fucking dad dies. You know…the normal shit. So the things you know your whole life either adapt or disappear.
Easter was another day where there would be church and then food. As the years went on, my sister took over making dinner for everyone and I would just mosey on in after they got back from talking to god. My sister is also an accountant, so Easter falls right in the middle of the tax deadline apocalypse that she lives. Her making dinner for everyone became me moseying on over to her place after they went to church and then we would go to brunch.
And that has been the way it is for a few years now. We are all happy with it. And very specifically the bananas foster bread pudding that comes for dessert at the restaurant.
But not this year. We are all in our different places. I am missing my nephews trying to do an Easter egg hunt in the backyard. I did, however, get a video texted to me of my youngest nephew still not getting that if he follows his older brother, he isn’t going to find any goddamn eggs and then eventually meltdown about how unfair the world is.
What I’m trying to say is, shit is tough, but it doesn’t mean anything is over. Next year or whenever, you can have Easter or whatever else you celebrate with your family. The time away may even make you not so cynical about it all *tries to look in the mirror, but refuses to make eye contact* and look forward to it more. Mad respect to all of my Jewish friends who posted about the video conference call Seder dinners they had on the first day of Passover this year. We will make do. Then we will make adjustments.
Am I going to get to have the bread pudding next year on Easter? I don’t know. Will I throw a bunch of plastic easter eggs into the bushes to see how deep my nephews will dive in to get the cheap candy inside? You betcha!
And besides, I found a pizza place in my neighborhood that has a stromboli that reminds me of the one I grew up with. Maybe I will make an appearance at the Christmas Eve dinner with a cold pizza byproduct and make up for lost times.
We have little choice in it all right now, so do what makes you happy. Eat stromboli, make bread (pudding), watch horror movies until you are completely numb to the violence. Call your family. Tell them you mailed them some candy and a card, but you have no idea why none of it arrived. Then eat all of the candy. I will let you guess which of these I did!
* Tomorrow is Monday the 13th and Shudder is going to be playing the first 8*** Friday the 13th movies, if you need a refresher on how hilarious(ly great) they are.
** The other Jason that was resurrected from dead who people love is Jason Todd, as was pointed out by my friend and frequent comic book collaborator Taylor Esposito. Check his stuff out by clicking on his name.
*** After you watch Friday the 13th Part V: A New Beginning, watch this Wolfie’s Just Fine video: