I’m going off topic today and want to talk about superstitions. If you think you don’t have any in your life you are probably incorrect. That idea came to me as I was perusing my shelves of books for a novel I knew I had purchased but could not locate it. So as I stand here dictating this into a voice recognition, I count six books on superstitions, all research for paranormal stories. I went a little overboard but then, I’ve been writing paranormal twenty years before publishers jumped on that wagon.
Everyone’s beliefs are their own but just keeping track of my superstitions for a couple of days made me realize that yes, I am superstitious.
If I spill salt, I toss a bit over my shoulder. The Irish Cures, Mystic Charms and Superstitions by the Lady Wild, says never give away any salt or fire while the churning is going on for to upset the salt is exceedingly unlucky and a bad omen. To avert evil, gather salt and fling it over the right shoulder into a fire with the left hand. Yes, I do it just never that specific.
My mother believes in a custom that if you put your pajamas on inside out you weren’t supposed to take them off and turn them right side out, but to just keep them on. I know that you’re not supposed to mend a dress while you’re wearing it (as in stitching up the hem) or evil and malicious reports will be spread about you. (so says Lady Wild’s book)
One of my superstitions is I have never lit a cigarette off of a candle. To do so is bad luck. I heard that when I was in my twenties. I also don’t blow out candles, but clap them out. That came from my study of the craft for Irish novels and references not disrespecting the caretakers of the elements and well, it just never left me.
When I sweep the floor, I sweep towards the door and out over the threshold. That sweeps all negativity out with the dirt. There is even an Irish blessing framed and hanging in my hall near the door and below it is a broom with the bristles pointing upward. To keep goodness from spilling out.
I’m half Irish and half Sicilian and my Nana once told me that ‘The Jettatura can give you the molokia and you would be harmed.” To protect against it she gave me a horn with a mustard seed inside. I still have that horn somewhere in this house.
When we bought our house my father, an ordained Catholic deacon, blessed every doorway and window. I truly felt that none of us could actually sleep in the house until then. I had to clean out the negativity from the previous owners, who were divorcing. That’s a part of my Catholic upbringing, however I also sage the entire house with a smoke sage and I salt my property. Considering that we were robbed a few months ago I think I need to do it again.
I do remember my son when he was about fifteen years old trying to move a large mirror when he was told not to and it broke. From that moment on my son had the worst fortune, barely made it out a high school, went to the Citadel and was hazed from 240 pounds down to 145 and looked like he was an Auschwitz victim. His tour in the Marines left him so banged up he couldn’t stay in and he was injured in Iraq to the point that he’s disabled. coincidence or not, I’m not one to dismiss it but am also not one to live by that either.
Yet I had a fortune cookie once that had my father’s favorite saying “Keep on keeping on.” I played those numbers on that stupid little fortune cookie and won several times until I lost the numbers. Coincidence? Yes. Or perhaps it’s simply faith.
So, do you have any superstitions?