Saturday, 21 April 2012

U is for Umbrella

(Wow! We're already at 'U'!)
Well, my title cheats a bit as I'm actually going to talk about superstitions, but, seeing as umbrellas happen to play a small role in them, I guess the title counts:
- It is believed that it is bad luck to open an umbrella indoors.

Pretty umbrella, don't you think?
This superstition originates back when umbrellas were mainly used for sunshades as well as a shield from the rain. Opening the umbrella inside was considered a direct insult to the sun gods, particularly Ra. This would result in the sun gods inflicting their 'wrath' on the entire house and all those who lived in it.
Another variation is that opening an umbrella inside is only bad luck if someone else gave the umbrella as a gift, if it has never been used outside before, if it is black and especially is there's already an ill or injured person inside the house.
Other umbrella superstitions:
- It is bad luck to give an umbrella as a gift
- If you drop an umbrella, do not pick it up. Instead, have someone else do it for you, or will be the recipient of bad luck.
- If a single woman drops an umbrella, she will never marry.
- If an umbrella is opened outside when it is not needed, bad weather will follow.
- Never place your umbrella on a table or a bed or you'll receive bad luck.

So there you have it! Umbrellas are important things with important rules!...apparently.
I know it seems load of mumbo jumbo but, some people really do believe these things.
Anyways, I'm not really saying all this to arbitrarily talk about umbrellas... I've been thinking of interpreting some of these superstitions into my novel, or maybe even making some of my own.
Can anyone think of any ideas of superstitions I could make up?

For you benefit, if you consider it a benefit, here is a lovely list of more crazy superstitions:

- A bird in the house is a sign of death.

So that's why Dumbledore died!

- A loaf of bread should never be turned upside-down after a slice has been cut from it.
- If the first butterfly you see in the year is white, you'll have good luck all year
- If a black cat walks towards you, it brings good fortune, but if it walks away, it takes the good luck with it.
- It's bad luck to leave a house through a different door than the one used to come in.
- If you catch a leaf on the first day of autumn, you will not catch a cold all winter
- It is bad luck to walk under a ladder
And, my favourite: To dream of a lizard is a sign that you have an secret enemy

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