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QotD Oct 18 Superstitions

I talked about superstitions in another post, but those were specific to the kitchen. Today’s prompt is about superstitions overall. I used to have a bunch of them, especially when I was a pagan, but today, not so much. I still have a few, but not nearly as many as I had before. I think I used carry those with me because my life was pretty crappy and I wanted to both bring good luck into my life and drive bad luck away, and I was willing to do whatever I thought would help. If that makes sense. So anyway, on to the prompt. Which is: What kind of superstitions do you have?

What kind of superstitions to you have?

Note, dear reader, that the question isn’t directly asking What superstitions do you have? but What kind of superstitions do you have? There’s a difference. As I mentioned above, most of the superstitions I have are to drive bad luck away from me rather to bring good luck towards me. Mostly though, they are to drive bad luck away. I’ve never carried a four-leaf clover or a rabbit’s foot or anything like that. And if I did, it was because someone gave it to me and I carried it out of obligation for a while. I made a good luck necklace for myself once but ended up giving it away… to a stranger who appeared to need it more than I did. It was a weird period in my life. I don’t generally have a lucky coin or anything like that. Though I think I carried one for a while but forgot about it. No, dear reader my superstitions were and are more along the lines of knocking on wood and throwing salt over my shoulder things that were supposed to keep bad luck away.

Picture of a field of clover with the word "If it weren't for bad luck, I would have no luck at all."
How I used to view the world

Knocking on wood, for those who don’t know, is done when someone says something that may “draw the devil’s ear”. So, for example, say things are going well for someone and they’re talking to a friend and they mention how well things are going. By talking aloud about their good tidings, they may have piqued the interest of either the devil or imps, who will then bring them misfortune. They should therefore knock on wood, which is sacred, and also makes a loud noise, to drive the miscreants off. I mentioned tossing salt over the shoulder in my other post on superstitions but I’ll recap here. So, salt used to be a precious mineral, which is why someone is said to be “worth their salt”, and if someone spilt salt, that meant the devil was looking over their shoulder. To have the devil so close was definitely bad luck so to ward it off you should take a pinch of the spilt salt and toss it over the left shoulder (I’m pretty sure it’s left since left is sinister). And while I don’t actually believe that the devil is looking over my shoulder or listening to my conversations, I still do the salt thing and knock on wood… because why not?

I also have a superstition when I drive. It is also supposed to keep bad luck — in this case cops — away. If I drive through a yellow light there’s always a chance that a cop will take it into his head that I could have stopped. So I knock twice on the dashboard and once on the windshield. I don’t recall when I picked that up, but I did. Do I believe it works? I dunno. Probably not. But it doesn’t hurt.

A picture with a dog overlooking a field with the words, "Of course I believe in the power of barking. The only reason I'm alive today is because of barking. Every day a mailman approaches my home and I bark until he leaves. To this day, he still has not brutally murdered my entire family. I have the power of barking to thank for that."
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