Storyphile | Your life. Your story. For the people you love.

Funeral Customs

I was 21 when my baba died. This was my first experience with the death of someone who was really close to me, but I was not completely sheltered from death before. When we were kids, we were taken along to the funerals of extended family members. I don’t remember being traumatized—even at the funeral … Read more

Easter Traditions

I’ve been writing Ukrainian Easter eggs. They’re called pysanky (pronounced py-san-KY), from the word pysaty (py-SAH-ty), which means “to write.” That’s why you “write” pysanky; you don’t paint them. (The y is pronounced like the u in the word business. And a single one is called a PY-san-kah.) I made up some of my own … Read more

If Only Spaghetti Grew On Trees

Today was April Fool’s Day, so I thought I’d look up the origins of the holiday. It turns out that no one knows for sure. It definitely dates to ancient times and to festivals of practical joking associated with the coming of spring. My favourite April Fool’s prank is the 1957 BBC “documentary” about Switzerland’s … Read more