I’m sometimes asked “where do you get your inspiration for your blog topics?” Most days the universe just speaks to me. Take today for example: this is my 13th blog post, and today is Friday the 13th. Coincidence? Hmm… It appears that the question of the day is: are you a superstitious person? Do you believe in luck?
Superstitions, by definition, are beliefs based in something supernatural or a feeling or an instinct. Some superstitions may be somewhat fact-based: it may be bad luck to walk under a ladder because it is, in fact, unsafe to walk under a ladder.
I am most definitely superstitious. In particular, I become ridiculously superstitious when I’m gambling. On a hot craps table, with a really hot shooter, I’ll leave the table once that shooter is done. When a new blackjack dealer rotates onto the table, if I lose three hands in a row, I’ll switch to a different table.
I come from a long line of superstitious Irishmen (and women). My Irish Nana had all kinds of “Nanaisms.” Her personal belief system was strong:
Nana also believed she could get rid of warts by spitting on them. I’m here to tell you that when I was a kid she spit on a wart on my left middle finger and I swear that sucker was gone the next day.
I’ve always been fascinated with the superstitious underpinnings of most sports. Baseball in particular seems to have its own magical code of superstitions and good luck traditions. For example, never, ever, discuss a no hitter while it’s in progress. You’ve seen where a pitcher it the midst of a possible no hitter, or the even more elusive perfect game, will sit remotely by himself at the end of the dugout bench to avoid any discussion that could jinx his performance. And, who hasn’t heard of the Curse of the Bambino?
President Franklin Roosevelt was famously superstitious, suffering from triskaidekaphobia (also known as the fear of the number 13). Today, and this blog, would have troubled him. It is reported that he even changed travel dates or the number of people attending a dinner party in order to avoid the dreaded number thirteen.
You may think superstitions and beliefs in luck are just a bunch of hooey. However, can you honestly tell me that if a black cat crossed your path you wouldn’t view this as a bad omen? By the way: what do people who own black cats do? Do they freak out every time the cat walks across the room?
I’ve come across other superstitions that are not as universally well known as the black cat omen:
Whatever your beliefs, I wish you luck and good fortune today; and please be careful out there.