Guatemalan Carnival Eggshells

Rudy Giron: Cascarones de Carnaval &emdash; Cascarones de carnaval 1

Here’s your illustrated Spanish word of the day: Cascarón for eggshell.

What do we do with cascarones? Well, young people (i.e. children and/or children at heart) smash them on the heads of unsuspected victims. Since there is usually a costume party involved with Carnival you don’t know who your victimizer is. The confetti gets inside the back of your shirt along with pieces of egg shell and your hair is also a mess (particularly if you have curly hair). Is the last day you are allowed to be a brat before the 40 days of behaving start. —Manolo

I got such joy from smashing a cascaron on someone’s head. Heehee. The fun was not the same when someone smashed a cascaron on my head though. I remember some of the teachers got into the action as well. —Carmen

Love carnaval. My mom would start saving eggshells weeks in advance and she would dry them out, we would usually decorate them ourselves in school. I used to get blisters on my fingers from the scissors since we tried to make our confetti as small and tiny as possible, to make it harder to wash out of your hair, of course. —Claudia

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