number one

In two days: Rabbit!

Not this guy, but the verbal version used to mark the beginning of the month and (hopefully) bring good luck. Where did this come from? According to my Wikipedia search (source "Rabbit Rabbit", wikipedia.org: reliable), the specific origin of the superstition isn't known, though it appeared in print in England in 1420. My earliest Rabbit memories are connected to the house in which I used to live, a building the color of overripe blueberries. Though my memories of this place are shadowy and fragmented at best (flights of two-tone stairs; a sunstroked kitchen table; the sacred Kids' Computer Room, a smallish square with a checkered view of shingled rooftops and the wide San Francisco Bay), I can hear clearly my Dad's monthly rabbit wake-up calls. Lying at age six in my twin bed, snuggled below the stick drawing of the baby Jesus and Virgin Mary (outfitted in a demure yet stylish pastel skirt and respectable flowered hat) that I had done in Sunday school and affixed to the wall at a slight diagonal, I felt devoutly that to neglect the obligatory "Rabbit" response would be to commit myself to a month of terrible luck and/or to let down Jesus himself. 

Good things about April:

- The slow-but-steady, proportionate increases in green grass and daily sunshine, which combine to create little light-dappled, lime-colored patches beneath the leaves of the trees on the quad. 

- Half-price Easter candy.

- Jean shorts, outdoor barbecues, warm lawns, time for shadez.

Bad things about April:

- The seasonal surge in gym-goers (spring cleaning?), which leads to general congestion in the check-in area and makes it impossible to snag an elliptical machine between four and six PM.

- The reemergence of Juniper trees, which are scary-looking and make me sneeze.

- Papers, packing, the creep toward finals--how has the year gone by so quickly?