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Emerald’s Gem Box: Friday the 13th

This coming Friday is Friday the 13th. That doesn’t mean anything to a lot of folks, but it’s amazing how much it means to other folks.

I did a little research…Why exactly is Friday the 13th considered bad?

According to “Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia,” a Friday occurring on the 13th day of any month is considered to be a day of bad luck in English, German, Polish and Portuguese-speaking cultures around the globe. Similar superstitions exist in some other traditions. In Greece or Spain, for example, Tuesday the 13th takes the same role.

While some of us laugh at the thought of those that truly fear this harmless day – we would have to ask ourselves, “What superstitions do we give in to?”

I mentioned mine, in my column two weeks ago; my Grandmother Greene always taught me we had to have all our Christmas decorations down before the New Year rang in or we would bring all the bad luck from that year into the new and upcoming year.

The other superstition that my Grandma taught me was to never wash your clothes on New Year’s Day.  “You will wash someone out of your family,” she would say.

We probably all have heard the superstition that finding a penny would bring good luck.  Some went on to say that the penny must be “heads-up” to be good luck; and if you found a penny “heads-down,” it was bad luck.  My father always told me that finding money, in-of-itself, was a good sign regardless and to always pick it up!

When my daughters were young, one of their favorite superstitions was picking their feet up whenever we crossed a railroad track.  They said it would bring bad luck if we didn’t. So, every time we were heading somewhere and they would see that train track ahead, they would start yelling for everyone to pick their feet up.  And they would laugh and giggle while doing it.  (That my friends, is what makes life fun!)

Other top superstitions have included things such as: Don’t walk under a ladder, It’s bad for a black cat to cross the road in front of you, Don’t break a mirror or you’ll have seven years of bad luck, Knock on wood, Make a wish on a wishbone, Crossing your fingers brings good luck, Don’t open an umbrella inside or it will bring bad luck, horseshoes bring good luck, dream-catchers keep nightmares away, and spilling salt is bad luck (unless you then throw some over your left shoulder, like I do. This counter acts the bad luck on the salt spiller. By the way, this only becomes a problem if you are in a restaurant and there is someone sitting behind you.)

So remember, before you think someone else is silly for doing or acting a certain way... take a step back and look at your own life.  We all act silly about different things.  But you know what?  That’s what keeps life interesting and fun… the silly little quirky things that we come up with.  Wouldn’t life be boring without them?

So, the next time you cross a railroad track, pick your feet up and view it through a child’s eye.  Life will look a little brighter!!!

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