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Friday, April 30, 2010

What totems, rituals, or superstitions do you have?

Am I superstitious? Definitely. I knock on wood, cross my fingers, and wish on numbers, stars, eyelashes, and really whatever I can wish on because I've got a lot to wish for. But I also have an odd reversal of a common superstition.

You see, I was born on Friday July 13... and after a thunderstorm no less. Yes, the universal lucky number, 7, and the universal unlucky number 13, are my birthday. I was once told that if you are born on Friday the 13th, it makes Friday the 13th your lucky day. I definitely took that to heart... not that I can think of a Friday the thirteenth that was particularly lucky for me... But thirteen remains my favorite number with 7 being my second favorite and I'm also partial to 17 (sold my first book on April 17), 23 (husband's birthday, though I liked that number long before that, so somehow it makes senses I married a guy born on that day), and 27 (the age that many rock stars die, but for some reason I like it)... as well as 6 since 6+7=13... Yeah I'm really weird with numbers. And strangely this made me very lucky at roulette the last time I was in Vegas. . I like to send my manuscripts into my agent or have her send them on to editors on certain days or during certain time periods that I consider lucky. I was very pleased when she submitted to my editor BALLADS OF SUBURBIA on Kurt Cobain's birthday and sure enough, it sold! Thus far we haven't been so lucky with the manuscript that went out around the time he died, but I'm keeping my fingers crossed and wishing on 11:11 and that sort of thing that I didn't curse myself. Also, even though I'm pissed I didn't meet my personal deadline to submit a manuscript to my agent today, I'm hoping I can send it on 5/7 which sounds like a good number. And back to 13. I decided to get married on 10/3 because, you guessed it 10+3= 13.

I also have 13 piercings in my ears (10 in one and 3 in the other) and if I don't have all 13 earrings in, I think it's unlucky. I used to wear all these rubber jelly bracelets. It started with 7, then became 13, and finally 27, which was kind of out of control and I didn't take them off for a couple of years so they shrunk. Then I interviewed for a more professional job and had to cut them all of. So now I have other jewelry superstitions. I have a lucky bracelet. It's got little tiny old postcard images of my favorite city, Seattle. I also have a ring that belonged to friend of mine who passed away. He was a big guy so the ring is too big for any of my fingers and I wear it on a chain instead. If I'm dressing up, I put it on a black satin ribbon, but I don't go out (other than on those minor errands where I barely brush my hair, let alone find all of my jewelry) without that ring. One night I went to my bartending job and realized that I wasn't wearing my bracelet or necklace. Seeing that there were barely any customers in the bar (BAD LUCK!), I texted my husband and insisted he bring my jewelry to me. When it comes to bartending, I also for some reason associate certain barrettes or items of clothing to luckier than others for a busy night.

I also have my rituals. I practice Nichiren Buddhism, so I chant every morning when I wake up. I wasn't raised religiously and I still consider myself an atheist. To me Buddhism is more of a philosophy, you don't pray to a higher power, you chant to find the Buddha or greatness within yourself. So that's why I try to start my day by chanting, to get myself into a positive mindset that I can do anything... though of course since I am a very superstitious and ritualistic person, I also think that if I *don't* chant, bad things will happen, which is really just silly. I mean after all, I was born on Friday the 13th, I should be a very lucky person... I'm just waiting for that luck to catch up with me!

What about you? Got any lucky numbers or other charms or rituals?

1 comment:

Jan Blazanin said...

I feel the same way about opals that you feel about Friday the 13th. Opals are supposed to be bad luck except for those of us with October birthdays. Whenever I wear mine, I feel lucky.

I treat Friday the 13th with the utmost respect. Several years ago a friend of mine at the gym commented on how she didn't believe all that stuff about the 13th being unlucky. As soon as she said that, she hit her head on the corner of her gym locker, blood gushed out all over her white blouse, and she had to drive home and change clothes. That's why I knock on wood!