snopes.com Post new topic  Post a reply
search | faq | forum home

  next oldest topic   next newest topic
» Hello snopes.com » SLC Central » SLC: A Best Buy Christmas » Pineapple on the mantle, WTF?

 - UBBFriend: Email this page to someone!    
Author Topic: Pineapple on the mantle, WTF?
BeachLife
The Bills of St. Mary's


Icon 211 posted      Profile for BeachLife   Author's Homepage   E-mail BeachLife   Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
So I was listening to a piece on NPR today about people who uber-decorate their house. This particular piece was recorded in one of the Carolinas. But what really got wondering was a line something like this "Some people are perfectly content to have simple white lights, red bows, pineapples on the mantle..."

Pineapples on the mantle??? Is that a southern thing?

--------------------
Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
Jack Dragon, On Being a Dragon
Confessions of a Dragon's scribe
Diary of my Heart Surgery

Posts: 12094 | From: Michigan | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
Lainie
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


Icon 1 posted      Profile for Lainie   E-mail Lainie   Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
I've never heard of pineapples specifically as a holiday decoration, but I know they are a traditional symbol of hospitality, which is why pineapple designs are sometimes found carved on furniture or millwork.

ETA: And on tableware.

--------------------
How homophobic do you have to be to have penguin gaydar? - Lewis Black

Posts: 8322 | From: Columbus, OH | Registered: Aug 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
Baikal
Happy Holly Days


Icon 1 posted      Profile for Baikal   E-mail Baikal   Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
For what it's worth, I heard that piece at work today and thought the exact same thing (namely, 'wtf?'). Though... it was Richmond, not the Carolinas, story here. Still--pineapples?

-Baikal

--------------------
I'm just a typical American boy from a typical American town.

Posts: 1463 | From: CU, Boulder Campus | Registered: Feb 2001  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
Cervus
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


Icon 1 posted      Profile for Cervus   E-mail Cervus   Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
Sounds like a Tommy Bahama thing. Meaning, it has no cultural significance, but pineapples are trendy to use in fabric designs (along with dark rattan furniture) so perhaps someone's decorating scheme is influenced by Tommy Bahama.

Pineapples are also in fruit this time of year, so people in the south might have more pineapples available to eat, but I don't know of anyone putting them on a mantle.

--------------------
"There is no constitutional right to sleep with endangered reptiles." -- Carl Hiaasen
Won't somebody please think of the adults!

Posts: 8254 | From: Florida | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
Rhiandmoi
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


Icon 1 posted      Profile for Rhiandmoi   E-mail Rhiandmoi   Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
Maybe they are having a Melikalikimaka?

--------------------
I think that hyperbole is the single greatest factor contributing to the decline of society. - My friend Pat.

What is .02 worth?

Posts: 8745 | From: California | Registered: Jul 2003  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
NorthernLite
We Three Blings


Icon 1 posted      Profile for NorthernLite     Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
Perhaps they meant pine cones . I have certainly seen them used in Christmas decorations and placed on the mantle with ribbons, etc.

--------------------
You've got to remember that these are just simple farmers. These are people of the land. The common clay of the new West. You know... morons. -Blazing Saddles

Posts: 1074 | From: High Level, Alberta, Canada | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
niner domestic actual
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


Icon 1 posted      Profile for niner domestic actual   E-mail niner domestic actual   Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
This might explain it: http://www.history.org/Christmas/dec_pineapple.cfm

--------------------
Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake. Napoleon Bonaparte

Posts: 47 | From: Ontario | Registered: Sep 2006  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
Gibbie
Angels Wii Have Heard on High


Icon 1 posted      Profile for Gibbie     Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
Hmm I thought it sounded familiar. Probably a Virginia thing rather than a southern thing. It made much more sense when Baikal said Richmond. All about pineapples and holiday decorations in Colonial Williamsburg.

(Yes I know Richmond is not Williamsburg but the style is influential in that part of the state.)

Gibbie

eta: spanked, dammit I type too slow (or I talk too much)

--------------------
If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate.

Posts: 3993 | From: Indiana | Registered: Feb 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
Moth Drone
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


Icon 1 posted      Profile for Moth Drone   E-mail Moth Drone   Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
Oh pineapples are big in the decorating world around here as mentioned by Lainie as a symbol for hospitality. So it would only seem natural that it would eventually creep into holiday decorating.

There's a historic home just down the street that usually puts up a holiday wreath sort of thing made out of apples and pomegranates with a big pineapple in the center. I don't think I've seen it though this year...they must have moved.

In the South, traditionally all types of fruit from oranges, apples, pears, etc. usually make it into the Christmas centerpiece along with mixed nuts and colorful tree ornaments. Can't say I've seen any bananas though.

Posts: 182 | From: Tennessee | Registered: Nov 2003  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
Itsy Bitsy Spider
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


Icon 1 posted      Profile for Itsy Bitsy Spider   E-mail Itsy Bitsy Spider   Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
When I saw that heading, I just KNEW it had to be from South Carolina. [Smile] Charlestonians love pineapples, and they use them for decorations all over the place.Example
Posts: 13 | From: South Carolina | Registered: Dec 2006  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
tagurit
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


Icon 1 posted      Profile for tagurit   E-mail tagurit   Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
Hospitality? I thought pineapples were another fertility symbol. I had pineapple finials on my draperies back, well, way back.

--------------------
Explore, enjoy and protect the planet
---
AAMAH

Posts: 8532 | From: Michigan | Registered: Mar 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
Signora Del Drago
Angels Wii Have Heard on High


Icon 206 posted      Profile for Signora Del Drago     Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
From the links provided above (about decorating in Colonial Williamsburg):
quote:
Each pineapple plant gives its own life to produce a single fruit, and since 1681, the pineapple has been recognized as a Christian symbol. Around this time, Christopher Wren began using pineapple finials on churches.
Who knew? I was raised in a Christian family, and that's the first time I ever saw any reference to the pineapple as a Christian symbol. Maybe I missed something. There are only a few left of my parents' generation, so maybe I'd better ask my aunt what she knows about this. Interesting.

--------------------
"This air we're breathing. Oxygen, isn't it?"~I’mNotDedalus, impersonating Vincent D’Onofrio.|"Sometimes trying to communicate can be like walking through a minefield."~wanderwoman
"Give people a break. It's not easy doing a life."~Joshua Halberstam

Posts: 4020 | From: Oklahoma | Registered: Nov 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
ThistleSoftware
Little Sales Drummer Boy


Icon 1 posted      Profile for ThistleSoftware     Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
My mother has a quilt that hangs on the wall that has a pineapple and it says "welcome" across the bottom. She puts it up at Christmas. We are not Southern. Another data point I guess.

--------------------
Officially Heartless

Posts: 3065 | From: The Montgomery County of the West Coast- Berkeley, CA | Registered: Nov 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


Icon 1 posted      Profile for AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr     Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Itsy Bitsy Spider:
When I saw that heading, I just KNEW it had to be from South Carolina. [Smile] Charlestonians love pineapples, and they use them for decorations all over the place.Example

That was my first thought, as well. When I visited summer before last, I noticed that pineapples were practically everywhere.

--------------------
"When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty."--George Bernard Shaw

Posts: 19266 | From: Nashville, TN | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
GenYus
Away in a Manager's Special


Icon 1 posted      Profile for GenYus   E-mail GenYus   Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
Pineapples are good for making Jack-o-Lanterns. They carve easily, smell good when candled, and are much yummier that pumpkin seeds.

--------------------
IIRC, it wasn't the shoe bomber's loud prayers that sparked the takedown by the other passengers; it was that he was trying to light his shoe on fire. Very, very different. Canuckistan

Posts: 3694 | From: Arizona | Registered: Aug 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
Jocko's Jolly
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


Icon 1 posted      Profile for Jocko's Jolly   E-mail Jocko's Jolly   Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
Pineapples are also big in Massachusetts -- I think it's a historical thing rather than a cultural thing, so you're more apt to find it in a Colonial context (Williamsburg, Richmond, Boston, etc.) than strictly a Southern one.

--------------------
Like every good third-in-a-series it contains a whole load of ewoks, ‘Clubber’ Lang, whey-faced Sophia Coppola, Sean Connery as the Pirate Captain’s estranged dad, a crappy CGI alien, and Richard Pryor on a donkey. -- Gideon Defoe

Posts: 2211 | From: Harford County, MD | Registered: Oct 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
mrs.hi-c clown fishies
Happy Holly Days


Icon 1 posted      Profile for mrs.hi-c clown fishies     Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
Around here I think the pineapples mean hospitality as well. At least that was the answer I got from the guy who ran a funeral home where my uncle was shown at. He had pineapples everywhere!

--------------------
This song has no title...just words and a tune.

Instant Hi-C--Just add water...

Posts: 1620 | From: Michigan | Registered: Sep 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
Spam & Cookies-mmm
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


Icon 1 posted      Profile for Spam & Cookies-mmm   E-mail Spam & Cookies-mmm   Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
The explanation I heard for the pineapple-hospitality connection went something like this: In (some place, I can't remember where), women were not allowed to receive visitors when their husbands were not at home. When the husband was at home, and the family wanted to have visitors, they would place a pineapple on the gate post.

This was told to me by a neighbor who grew pineapples in her yard, so it must be true [Wink] .

--------------------
Did you see the Announcement?
There's a new snopes message board!

Posts: 7767 | From: Paradise Ceded | Registered: Jul 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
hoitoider
It Came Upon a Midnight Clearance


Icon 1 posted      Profile for hoitoider   E-mail hoitoider   Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
Yeah, growing up in Virginia we always had a pineapple as part of the centerpiece on the dining room table at Christmas. I think the pineapple is more about hospitality than anything, as noted here. Since there's a lot of entertaining going on at Christmas, I guess pineapples became associated w/ Christmas that way.

--------------------
No man has a right in America to treat any other man "tolerantly" for tolerance is the assumption of superiority. -Wendell L. Willkie

Posts: 3833 | From: Virginia | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
Watch Your Kidneys
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


Icon 1 posted      Profile for Watch Your Kidneys   E-mail Watch Your Kidneys   Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
"You mix pineapple juice with club soda and you get yourself a big bucket of crap."-Peggy Hill, Journalist.

I might have the quote a little messed up, but it still made me giggle. [Big Grin]

Posts: 163 | From: South Carolina | Registered: Sep 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
Lydia Oh Lydia
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


Icon 1 posted      Profile for Lydia Oh Lydia   Author's Homepage     Send new private message       Edit/Delete post   Reply with quote 
I lived in Williamsburg for 3 years. The pineapple, as others have mentioned, was the colonial symbol for hospitality. Pineapples are everywhere in the 'burg.

One thing I had never seen anywhere else were the fruit wreaths, often incorporating one or more pineapples as well as other fruits. (There's one at the top of the page that Gibbie linked to).

--------------------
"My name is the symbol for my identity and must not be lost." Motto of the Lucy Stone League.

Posts: 1815 | From: Pennsylvania | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
   

Quick Reply
Message:

HTML is enabled.
UBB Code™ is enabled.

Instant Graemlins
   


Post new topic  Post a reply Close topic   Feature Topic   Move Topic   Delete topic next oldest topic   next newest topic
 - Printer-friendly view of this topic
Hop To:


Urban Legends Reference Pages

Powered by Infopop Corporation
UBB.classic™ 6.7.2