Ah birthdays. In my very unscientific polling I have found that people either love birthdays or hate them. Of the two people that I polled, one (a six-year-old) loved birthdays and the other (a 50-year-old) didn’t really want to talk about birthdays all that much. Go figure.
There’s one thing that everyone of us has in common: birthdays. But it’s how we celebrate birthdays today around the world that shows how different our cultures really are.
How Birthdays Today Are Celebrated around the World
Mental Floss, a YouTube channel for knowledge junkies, recently celebrated their one year birthday. In recognition of their birthday they posted a video of birthday celebrations around the world.
Here’s how some countries celebrate birthdays:
Denmark – a flag is placed outside of the house indicating that someone, inside, is having a birthday.
Australia and New Zealand – birthday celebrations include fairy bread. This wonderful delight consists of white bread, butter and sprinkles. Yum.
Brazil and Hungary – have a custom of pulling the birthday boy’s or girl’s earlobe. Apparently the tradition stems from wishing that the honoree lives long enough so that their earlobes will touch their feet. Now there’s a visual.
The UK and Ireland – birthday celebrations in this neck of the woods involves what’s known as “the bump”. To administer the bump one simply picks up the birthday boy or girl and bump them (hopefully lightly) on the ground. One bump for each year. I guess that’s why some 70-year-olds run for the hills on their birthdays.
The US and Canada – similar to the bump except it involves smashing the birthday cake. The birthday kids are handed the cake and the smashing begins. Sometimes they may throw the cake on the floor and other times they may throw themselves, maybe face first, into the cake.
Canada – in addition to cake smashing with their American cousins, Canadians are also known to smear butter on the birthday boy’s or girl’s nose. I can’t help wondering: whatever for?
Mexico – okay do I really have to tell you the birthday tradition here? Yes, you guessed it – piñata. I guess that’s a kind of smashing. But did you know that the piñata did not originate in Mexico. It actually came from Asia. Now you know the rest of the story…
So if you have an upcoming birthday and are running out of ideas, maybe spice things up a little bit and try a birthday tradition from a different part of the world.
Additional Birthday Blogs:
- Birthday Party Planning, to Surprise or Not to Surprise?
- Clean and Fun Adult Games!
- Adult Birthday Party Ideas – You’re Only as Old as You Feel!