I am Canadian. I say this proudly even despite what I am about to tell you. Apparently, a tradition attributed to Canadians is buttering the nose of the birthday boy or girl.
This never happened to me. Nor to any of my friends (unless they were too embarrassed to ever mention it). Yet, if it’s on the Internet it must be true, right?
Mental Floss traces it to Canada in their fun birthday traditions video. The Revivalist recalls his own birthday greasings in the past and credits the tradition back to the Scots.
A Wheel and Distaff blog about the buttering garners comments from people across the United States who have experienced this tradition too.
A blogger on “Intangible Cultural Heritage, Folklore, and Oral History” talking about the tradition quotes a private blog with an American writer stating, “As the story goes, the butter is meant to help you slide into your new year!”
I love the idea of sliding into my new year, but I can think of many things I’d rather use:
icing (not buttercream…I hate buttercream)
Hmm. Mine would be a sticky start to the year.
Canadian or no, I’d love to hear if you have experience with this tradition. Some day, when I eventually write my book on birthdays, I can add more to the conversation around this greasy idea.