For those of you that have spent the majority of your life in the bliss of ignorance [or in the bliss of on-line porn] and don't know about superstitions, put your wang down and pay attention because we are going to fill you in.
We're sure you have heard the old saying 'don't walk under a ladder because it's bad luck,' and you probably just rolled your eyes at this and proceeded to do so anyway, most likely because you're an ass and do what you want without expecting any consequence. However my friend, there is consequence. An open ladder on a flat surface forms the sign of the Holy Trinity which is a triangle or triangular shape that represents the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. What's the consequence? Eternal damnation. That's right, because in case you hadn't noticed, God can be a MUCH bigger ass than you. Another popular example dates back to the gallows when hangmen used ladders for the soon-to be dead guy to stand on before being hung. Walking through the ladder would distract the hangman [the bringer of death] from killing people for a moment, this would cause him to get all pissy and give you the "evil eye"... or more delicately put, " death would notice you. " Creepy, eh?
Another common superstiton is the one where if you break a mirror you will have bad luck for seven years. The reason why it was bad luck [other than the possibility of having a piece lodge itself in your cornea] is that back before our ancestors knew about reflections and shadows, the reflections were thought to be a part of them and their soul placed into the mirror. So, if you broke that mirror you in turn lost or damaged part of your soul. Why bad luck for seven years you ask? It is believed that the ancient Romans came up with this fun little twist amongst all of that buttsex running rampant because they believed that man's body was physically rejuvenated after seven years, thus becoming a "new man."
For those of you that have ever dared to spill the salt and not immediately cast some of that salt over your left shoulder, you're fucking doomed. Because you see, long ago when salt was first discovered it was so fucking awesome that people accepted it as payment [salary, get it?] as well as being useful as a preservative. Salt was also used in rituals and magic superstition to purify and bless things. So the casting of the salt over your left shoulder was thought to drive away all those evil closet monsters that were lurking behind you in the shadows. [They had high blood pressure.] Sounds reasonable, no?
How many of you have ever cowered at home in your closet on Friday the 13th for fear of all those bad luck cooties that are sure to swallow your soul and shit in your cheerios? For those of you that have, you're an idiot. Giving weight to logical thinking in this PRESENT time by rationalizing that coincidences DO exist, one should come to the realization that the fears and superstitions surrounding Friday the 13th are very, very silly. But for those of you who choose to believe in this superstition are putting faith in two separate superstitions that have been gathered together through years and years of unfortunate coincidences paired with speculation of dates or days on some of the events or happenings stemming from the bible to create one big superstition that is neatly packaged with a tag that reads "giant flaming ball of shit." Since these are two separate superstitions that throughout time have come together for the ultimate win in stupid beliefs, we'll break this one down into two parts.
Friday- the day that for most people marks the end of the work/school week and the beginning of those drunken nights of debauchery spent at the strip club handing out your hard-earned money to women that you aren't even allowed to touch, or the nights of getting shit-faced at that lame ass bar you always go to, swearing to yourself each time that you will never go back because you keep running into the people you can't stand that force you into akward conversations about shit you don't care about while you wonder if you are doing a convincing job of pretending like you don't despise them and then wonder why you even give a shit, since you hate them, followed by running into your now ex-girlfriend and the dude she fucked in that same bar's bathroom last week while you were trapped shoulder deep in douchebags rocking out to shitty cover bands and spilling drinks on you, good times right? For other people Friday is the day that Jesus was crucified, the day some dude named Noah tripped shrooms and put a bunch of animals on a boat and sailed some waves, the day that Eve took the "fruit" from the "serpent" and let Adam "eat" the "fruit" thus pissing God off so he tossed them out of his super-cool garden. In the way back times, but not as way back as Jesus times, Friday was execution or hangman's day for pagan Rome and Britain. Also the Jewish Sabbath begins on Friday at dusk and anti-semitic Christians, never being big fans of Jews, felt this was in some way sinister, but it is more likely that they were trying to cast the Jewish religion in a bad light to try discrediting their beliefs. Witches and devil worshippers were believed to have held their black masses on Fridays as well.
The number 13- was a great number before religion started talking trash and posting naughty pictures of it on the web. One reason why the number thirteen could be considered lucky is that it corresponds to the 12.4 lunar moons of the year. Lunar or 'full' moons signify a new month in a calendar year with one lunar moon for each month. The exception of two lunar moons occuring in the same calendar month only occur about every 2.5 years which is why there are 12.4 lunar moons in a year and not just twelve or just thirteen. Occasionally a thirteenth month has to be added to balance out the calendar years. When the thirteenth month is added onto the calendar this is known as a leap year. In England a calendar of thirteen months with twenty-eight days plus one extra day, known as "a year and a day," was still in use up to Tudor times. The lunar year was easier for most cultures to count and one can definitely argue that without the addition of the number thirteen our perception of time would be severely distorted. For thousands of years, before scientific methods observed the movement of the Earth around the sun, the lunar year was associated with the worship of a pagan Goddess, which is a possible reason thirteen became an unlucky or taboo number. The number thirteen for the ancient Egyptions was also a very lucky number because for them the quest of life [or spiritual ascension] came in twelve stages during their fleshy forms with the thirteenth coming in the eternal afterlife [death] which was the desired transformation. Other religions or peoples that came after the Egyptions reguarded death as something to be feared. One of the most popular reasons why thirteen became an unlucky number by most accounts starts with the last supper between Jesus and his twelve disciples, with the thirteenth being Judas who was the last to sit at the table and the disciple that betrayed Jesus. Another "thirteen's a crowd" scenario was when that dick of a Norse god Loki crashed a party at Valhalla- the banquet hall of the gods. Loki happened to be the thirteenth guest at the banquet. The arrival of Loki kinda took a giant dump on everyone's parade, because aside from being a complete dick [which was probably the reason they "forgot" to send an invite] Loki decided to liven up the party by playing a mean little trick on a blind dude named Hod. Hod was the brother of Balder, the Norse god of light, joy, and reconciliation. The trick was to get Hod to throw some mistletow on Balder. What's so mean about that you ask? Not much really, it's just mistletoe, right? Yes it was just some harmless mistletoe, except mistletoe to Balder was like Kryptonite to Superman x's 10,000...so if you haven't guessed it yet, Balder fucking died...from mistletoe. [ If Balder were a superhero I think he would be placed somewhere between Bucky and Aquaman] Going by these two stories you can see where the superstition of thirteen people gathered together means bad luck, because one of those thirteen motherfuckers is certain to die. Better hope you aren't the one that gets axed by mistletoe, because that would just be lame.
Oh and who could forget about those douchebaggery black cats that cross your path and bring you bad luck? There are a few variations on the black cat superstition but the coolest one we found throws it back to ancient Egypt where the goddess Bast was a black female cat. In Egyption culture cats were concidered sacred; this was all fine and dandy until those silly Christians wanting to cram their religion down the world's throat convinced the ignorant people that black cats were demons playing dress up [thus proving Christians have always been the unwelcomed domineering step-father of the world]. So black cats, being demons, crossing your path created a barrier of evil cutting you off from God and earning you a big hell no asshole when you asked to go to heaven. The answer to prevent all of that jive talk was simple, they should fucking kill them cats, yeah! Not having their bloodlust fullfilled by just killing kitty they also took out all the crazy cat ladies, believing them to be witches.
Some black cats just want to be your friend and show you a good time. What's bad about that?
At first mention these next few superstitions seemed to be the typical rants and raves of our beloved crazy as ballsacks ancestors, but once we tracked down the story that may have originated them it all started to make sense.
Ever heard that it is bad luck to light three cigarettes with the same match? This superstition is rumored to have first been shit out in the trenches of World War I with some rumors shitting it even further back to the Boer War. You see, in the dark of the night the light from a match could be seen by your enemy and in the time it takes you to light three cigarettes the enemy sniper had sufficient time to zero in on your location and get a shot off. Then along came some asshole match tycoon named Ivar Krueger who thought it a great idea to exploit the deaths of soldiers by spinning this web even further to sell more matches. However, we could argue this as the first ever known anti-smoking campaign.
Another stupid-as-a-George-Bush-press-hearing-superstition was the practice of holding your breath and closing your mouth and nose when passing a cemetary or when around the bodies of the recently deceased as for them not to creep their puney dead souls into your ass-breathy mouth to become the new host of your fleshiness out of jealousy, because what better way to taunt the dead than to breathe? After we took the stupid out of that we replaced it with the more sound reasoning that it was most likely a practice people used way back when-who-the-fuck-cares to prevent breathing in whatever airborn illnesses might be floating about the bodies of the recently diseased ridden deceased.
This next one goes out to all of you ghost enthusiasts that also have a fondness for the theatre, and by theatre we don't mean donkey shows. Apparently, apart from being typical weirdos otherwise known as thespians [not in any way related to sexual preference...or is it?] theatre folk seem to have an odd fascination with ghosts and the belief that ghosts need a night to themselves to put on their own version of "Cats" which they have aptly re-titled "Cats: What We REALLY Do After Nine Lives" [we've speculated that the audience is most likely made up of all those poor lost souls wandering through limbo] so to aid them in these shenanigans a light is to be left on 'front and center' stage. Failing to do so would anger the ghosts leading to pranks and other more shenanigigy, shenanigans. After giving it about negative fifteen minutes of thought it seems more likely that a light is left on to aid the theatre personnel to see where the fuck it is that they are walking as to not trip over all the shit crammed on the stage, thus preventing a death fall into the orchestra pit, and possibly dooming one's self to become a ghostly inhabitor of the theatre as well. Ghosts or not, either way it's for good measure because they sure as shit would not want to find themselves spending their afterlife playing the role of 'Rumpleteazer'- the notorious cat-burglar who ends one of the "unique" dance numbers by latching onto another creepy weirdo in a catsuit and doing a double windmill across the stage. [So let's see, if the audience is limbo... then the stage MUST be hell]
Yeah...this about sums it up. Limbo, please?
1. Cleveland Indians' left-fielder Kevin Rhomberg's peculiar superstition was that if someone touched him, he had to touch them back. If Rhomberg was tagged out, he'd wait until the defense cleared the field and chased down the player who tagged him. This quickly spread and players would touch Rhomberg and run, causing him to panic. An umpire had to halt a game between New York and Cleveland, because Yankees players refused to stop touching Rhomberg. [ We speculate this was Rhomberg's way to make up for all those childhood games of tag he lost] Rhomberg also refused to make right turns while on the field, so if a situation forced him to make a right turn, he'd go to his left and make a full circle to head in the right direction.
2. Moises Alou, San Francisco Giants outfielder, has a system for avoiding calluses and hardening his skin since he doesn't use gloves at bat. He urinates on his hands throughout the season. New York Yankees catcher Jorge Posada also uses this superstition to aid in his approach at the plate.
Hold On! I have to make sure they are evenly coated, and then I'm good to go!
3.Former NHL Ottawa Senators forward Bruce Gardiner would dip the blade of his stick in the locker room toilet before each game. This superstition started after several games without a point. When he asked veteran Tom Chorske for advice, Chorske told Gardiner he was treating his stick too well and needed to teach the wood to respect him by dunking it in the toilet. [All men should teach their wood to respect them to avoid all of those "awkward situations"]
4.Jaguars defensive tackle John Henderson has assistant team trainer Joe Sheehan slap him across the face as hard as Sheehan possibly can. Henderson and Sheehan began the ritual as a way to get Henderson pumped up for the game.
5.Serena Williams, one of the greatest female tennis players, believes her wins are the result of closely followed routines that include bringing her shower sandals to the court, tying her shoelaces a specific way, and bouncing the ball five times before her first serve and twice before her second, she even wears the same pair of socks throughout a tournament. She has blamed losses on not following her routine. [So if you want to beat her, fuck up her "routine" and steal her sandals]
6.Patrick Roy [former NHL Montreal Canadien] would skate backwards towards the net before turning around at the last second-which he believed made the goal shrink. During the game, he would have in-depth conversations with the posts, and thanked them when a puck was deflected. He also often "touched" them. [Sounds like we might be seeing Roy on a future follow-up to "The 6 Strangest Objects People Were Caught Having Sex With" article, here on Cracked. Check the links]
7.UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Lyoto Machida has a daily habit of drinking his own urine, with the belief that urine is a natural medicine that cleanses the body. Which to our horror actually turns out to be true. So maybe he is crazy- like a fox. [FUN FACT ALERT! If you've been dying to try this out but aren't sure you can stomache that icky pee-pee taste, chug down some diet sodas before urinating. Artificial sweeteners are excreted in urine and they will give your flow that sweet taste you've been looking for. Your welcome.]
Just kidding! It felt weird leaving you hanging like that without saying goodbye. So anyways, we hope you enjoyed these little tid-bits of information that were carefully placed around horrible jokes and religion bashing. Remember, it's all in fun. Nothing warms the cockels of our hearts more than bringing you guys pleasure in the things that we write. Thank you for checking us out and feel free to leave comments reguarding this topic. The subject of superstition is very open to interpretation and we are very welcoming of anything you would like to discuss about this article. All that we ask is that you please be gentle as to not destroy anyone's pathetic ego. Thank you again, and keep reading!
Always fly FREE.