Because Sunday is the day of rest for so many (and stats are famously low on Sundays) I am going to post some blogs from long ago. I realize some of you might have already read them - but most of you probably haven't. So grab a cup of coffee, kick back, and enjoy this blast from the past...because sometimes, things are better the second time around...
THURSDAY, JUNE 24, 2010
No world is more riddled with superstition than the world of the sea. I've always known of the true blue sailor superstitions such as "bananas on a boat are bad luck" (you'll slip on the peel and fall overboard), dolphins swimming with your ship is a sign of good luck, "don't whistle on a boat" (it will raise a gale) and, yes, I've always been aware of the sexist superstition that "a woman on a boat brings bad luck" (apparently, we 'anger' the sea). I was not aware, however, that a NAKED woman on board will actually "calm the sea" (hence the naked figureheads adorning bows). Riiiiiigggghhht. Anyone else see a little discrepancy here? I've got to hand it to those sailors of yesteryear though, they really knew how to work an angle. I wonder how many seasick women ran around in their birthday suits when a storm hit or the waves got a little out of hand? Very 'age of Aquarius'.
Turns out - there are some pretty wacky nautical superstitions out there. Here are a few gems:
- Black traveling bags are bad omens for sailors.
- Avoid flat-footed people when beginning a trip BUT the bad luck can be averted if you speak to the flat-footed person before they speak to you.
- Avoid red-headed people when beginning a trip BUT (like the above) the bad luck can be averted if you speak to the red head before they speak to you.
- The caul of a newborn is protection against drowning and will bring the owner good luck (FYI 'caul' is essentially the amniotic sac....ummmmm who OWNS this sort of thing!?!).
- The feather of a wren slain on New Years Day will protect a sailor from dying in a shipwreck.
Who comes up with this stuff?! And to anyone out there who owns any part of the amniotic sac and carries it around for good luck - please seek help.
Sailors are a very superstitious bunch, and I'm guessing it has everything to do with the fact that, once at sea, we have very little control of the world around us and adhering to little tokens and rituals helps us to feel like we have a hand in our fate. Superstitions provide a sense of security and confidence. That, and the fact that sailors like their women in the buff. Who can blame 'em?
There is a tremendous amount of power in belief and maybe - just maybe if Scott and I offer Neptune some libations and goodies along our journey (hope he likes Rum!), he'll take good care of us! It's worth a shot (literally)!
Brittany & Scott