We’ve always done a funny thing in my family at midnight on New Year’s Eve. Some people shoot off fireworks; we go out on the stoop and bang pots!

Anyone else do that?

I wonder if it isn’t a city thing that my parents brought with them when they moved down here to the shore. Growing up, I remember a few other families in the neighborhood that did it, but I’ve not met anyone since that looks for the biggest pot and the klankiest utensil as midnight approaches.


I think if I were to do it in the neighborhood where I live now, there’d be police at my doorstep within minutes. But if I get together with my brothers on New Year’s Eve, there’s sure to be pots.

And Brian playing the trumpet to add to the racket out there on the stoop.

Listening to him tonight, playing first Auld Lang Syne and then Reveille, I felt that sense of melancholy that seems almost inevitable on this night; another year done. Reveille tends to turn that around pretty quick tho.


I wonder Kev… did Dad play his horn on New Year’s Eve too, or am I imagining that memory?

Hope it was a happy and safe night for all.

15 thoughts on “Reveille”

  1. Happy New Year, Laura! Yes, we banged pots and threw confetti and streamers. Also rang a bell or two.

    Last night – nothing. I went to bed early and must have slept instantly. Woke at 4: this morning. I’m sure there were fireworks in the neighborhood, but I didn’t hear them.

    Thanks for all of your wonderful posts in 2008.

  2. The first New Years I remember staying up til midnight were spent with my cousins at my grandmother’s house. And we always banged pots outside! Happy New Year, Laura.

  3. When I lived in Quebec, we once visited New Brunswick on the National Day for Acadia. Acadia was the old French province that preceded New Brunswick, PEI and Nova Scotia before the territory was handed over to the Brits. But for Acadian National Day, the people there still go out in the streets and bang pots and make all sorts of other noise to let English know that the French Acadians are still there and are not going anywhere!

  4. LOL Laura… at the sight of your pot banging! Here’s wishing you and yours a New Year filled with love, happiness, and blessings!

  5. Beats the heck out of the idiots around here who go outside and fire guns. You can beat pots and pans in my neighborhood anytime!

    Happy New Year

  6. Bang pots? That’s a new one, but I agree it is better than firing guns.
    Of all the New Year’s Eve traditions I have learned of, I like the Spanish tradition of eating 12 grapes, one for each stroke at midnight. It’s a lot quieter than banging pots!

  7. Yup .. broke many a wooden spoon since that was my banger of choice!

    BL does not allow pot banging anymore :<( says it scares the bunnies! Plenty of fire-works and other noise around though.

    Worked quite few years in a camp and Reville surely is fixed in my brain. Might be sleepy when it starts, but it gets you going!

    “I can’t get ’em up, I can’t get ’em up, I can’t get ’em up in the morning” Tra La La …

  8. All four of us were curled up on the bed with a few cats and dogs thrown in for good measure, then the girls counted down for us and then we all went to bed. Enthralling, huh?

    I wanna bang pots, too.
    : )

  9. My mother grew up in the Fishtown section of Philadelphia, where everybody ventures out at midnight and bangs pots and pans in the narrow streets lined with row homes. There were a few times in my childhood when we joined in the celebrations with all of her aunts, uncles, and cousins that still lived there. I remember how exciting and magical the nighttime felt with all the neighbors out together making such a racket.

    I would love to here reveille live — a fitting tribute to the year past and the one ahead.

    Wayne, PA

  10. Laura-li,
    I think Dad used to “play” his horn too, just like Brazil. Nuts. I was thinking about New Years eve when I was little (before your were born). We used to go to Mitzy’s house to stay over. Her kids were named the same as Mom’s. The kids would all fool around all night and then go to bed after midnight while Mom and Dad would stay up all night drinking beer. I remember one year hearing that Dad and Mitzy’s husband went for a jog in the morning. Funny what pops out of your memory once in a while.

    I banged pots BTW. Broke the wooden spoon. Damn.
    Bunch of lame sleepy heads in my neighborhood for the most part. My neighbor banged some pots too, but most of the neighbors tried to sleep in (at least until 3:30 AM when the roosters “go off”. 😉

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