Header Image (book)


Friday, January 13, 2017

Friday The 13th

(For politics, please scroll down)

Maneki-neko good luck charms originated in Japan, but they are often present in Chinese shops and restaurants.
Ian Willms for the New York Times.

From the New York Times:
Friday the 13th isn’t universally feared. Many countries disregard it.

In Greece and some Spanish-speaking countries, Tuesday the 13th is the dreaded day.

It’s Friday the 17th in Italy.

The number four is unlucky in parts of Asia — its pronunciation in several languages is close to the word 'death,
making April 4 (4/4) a day to stay inside.

A maneki-neko, a cute charm showing a cat with a raised paw, is used to ward off the bad luck.

Other animals believed to combat bad omens include pigs. In Germany, marzipan pigs are given as gifts on New Year’s Eve.

And if a cricket is chirping in your house, don’t kill it. The insects are viewed as harbingers of wealth in many parts of the world.

Magpies have great significance in Britain. Seeing a single magpie can be bad luck, it is believed, though saluting one can ward off ill fortune. But if you spot a group, you may be in luck, according to an old nursery rhyme that goes:

One for sorrow,
Two for joy,
Three for a girl,
Four for a boy,
Five for silver,
Six for gold,
Seven for a secret never to be told.


  1. We human beings seem to have a need to develop superstitions. I suspect the basis may be for us to have some sort of excuse or explanation for the blunders we make or the bad luck that sometimes befalls us.

    Were it not for the talismans we devise and invest with supernatural power, and the legendary folk tales handed down from the pre-historic world by oral tradition we would have nothing and no one to blame but ourselves –– a terrifying prospect for most no doubt. };^)>

    1. FT,
      I've never been superstitious. Neither were my parents and the rest of the family. Accountability was a requirement in the family.

    2. Did you think I was making a personal accusation? 'Twas just an observation about human nature in general –– one i believe to be correct.

    3. FT,
      I didn't take it personally.

      My point was that we learn or don't learn our superstitions according to the way we were reared.

  2. I've always wondered how such nonsense gets started in the first place.

  3. Maneki-neko are featured in Chris Marker's Sans Soleil .
    Not so much because he was superstitious but because he was a notorious cat fancier. Great film maker too.


We welcome civil dialogue at Always on Watch. Comments that include any of the following are subject to deletion:
1. Any use of profanity or abusive language
2. Off topic comments and spam
3. Use of personal invective