Holidays – Birthday – Sri Lankan

On every member of the family’s birthday, the other family member must each feed that person a piece of birthday cake. My informant says it is a fun and lighthearted birthday activity that they always do. It is supposed to be a way to treat the birthday boy or girl more specially than they are normally treated although it turns out to be funny since it is not practiced at any other time after one learns to feed him or herself. Every birthday since she can remember her family has done this tradition.

My informant says that all her extended family members and Indian and Sri Lankan friends who live in the United States do the same ritual. There is no significant cultural meaning for the activity except to somewhat ‘serve’ the person whose special day it is.