To my right sits an empty box from Palmer chocolates, next to a plate littered with chocolate crumbs.
It took years, but the rabbit is finally dead.
Finding an empty chocolate bunny box in my house has been nearly impossible for much of my adult life — but not because of a lack of chocolate bunnies. My parents have given me a chocolate bunny every Easter for as long as I can remember. It’s always a hollow, 5-ounce likeness of Peter Rabbit (complete with a tiny, 12-page booklet reprinting of Beatrix Potter’s story).
I looked forward to this tradition every year well through high school and college, but at some point — probably after my wife and I moved to Pennsylvania — I always ended up stuffing the yearly bunny in a pantry somewhere and forgetting about it. We would store the bunny until around Halloween or Thanksgiving, when my wife would ask: “Are you finally going to eat this?” And then she’d throw it away, so that the cycle could start all over in a few more months.
I’m still not certain why I let them go to waste every year. It’s possible that this is some weird manifestation of my aversion to killing animals — though I admit it’s ridiculously backwards that I have no qualms about eating a bacon cheeseburger, yet I’m bothered by plunging a knife into a rabbit-shaped hunk of chocolate.
I think my main reason for not eating them was the difficulty of consuming something so large and so blatantly childish without anyone else noticing or commenting. Nobody at work said anything as I surreptitiously snarfed down a bag of jellybeans over the course of last week, but I think my coworkers might have noticed me gnawing on an 6-inch chocolate rabbit at my desk.
But this year, after enough gentle ribbing from my folks and my wife, I finally decided to eat the bunny. It took some planning, plus three sittings over the course of the last week, but it’s done — leaving me with a satisfied sweet tooth, a mildly upset stomach, and a strange sense of accomplishment.