cross your fingers!

Let’s talk about superstitions, shall we? Superstitions are:

1. A belief or notion, not based on reason or knowledge, in or of the ominous significance of a particular thing, circumstance, occurence, proceeding or the like.

2. a system or collection of such beliefs.

3. a custom or act based on such belief.

4. irrational fear of what is unknown or mysterious, especially in connection with religion.

5. any blindly accepted belief or notion.

(source) 

There are some people who hold fast to superstitious beliefs. They feel that without certain rituals in their life, chaos would reign supreme and the outcome of their actions would be uncertain. Others, many of whom are religious, believe that superstitions are not valid, they are void of any real truth. The Roman Catholic Church actually views superstitions as sin, claiming that it denotes a lack of faith and trust in God due to the fact that one is basing their beliefs on a lack of knowledge and reason. In their mind, these superstitious beliefs violate the first of the Ten Commandments, “Thou shalt have no other gods before me”.

Where do I come in? Well, I believe that God holds everything in control, and that nothing is uncertain or mysterious in the plan of life. I believe that everything happens for a reason, and that my actions may sway an outcome, but ultimately, the resulting experience was meant to be. This doesn’t stop me from participating in little “routines” though 🙂 Now, before you go picturing me doing some crazy tribal dance while throwing bat heads into a boiling cauldron, let me explain… 🙂

I grew up playing sports, and in the athletic world, a huge stake is put on the outcome of a game. Athletes, coaches and fans alike have engaged in some pretty extreme traditions in order to help “sway” the victory in their favor. When the pressure is great, many people will try anything in order to give aid to their victory. Take Wade Boggs, former 3rd baseman for the Boston Red Sox. Wade ate chicken before every game, took exactly 150 ground balls during infield practice, and would write the Hebrew word “chai” in the dirt before each time at bat. Pete Lindbergh, from the Philadelphia Flyers had another equally insane tradition. Between periods, Pete would only drink a certain Swedish beverage called Pripps, and ONLY if it had exactly two ice cubes in it, and was delivered by a particular team trainer. Now, call me crazy, but I’m pretty sure I’ve never heard of a team losing due to the ratio of ice to liquid in the gatorade jugs. Just sayin’……

Crazy or not, though, these rituals provided Pete and Wade with a small semblence of peace and calm prior to, and during their games. Doing these rituals allowed them to break away from the uncertainty of the outcome, and focus on what they COULD control, their preparation. Yes, their’s were a bit extreme (I mean, would one more ground ball really make a difference?), but in the grand scheme of things, most rituals have a few things in common: they are weird, they are comforting, and no one else is going to understand them but you! 🙂

Here are some of the rituals I picked up while playing soccer (most of these started in high school):

 – My high school team would meditate in the dark while listening to the same song (The World’s Greatest, by R Kelly) before going out to the field to warm up.

 – My best friend and I would do the exact same warm up together after the main “team” warm up.

 – Before each game, we’d all kneel (on the right knee) with our arms crossed (right over left) and the same girl would pray. After, we’d uncross our arms and somersault backwards.

 – On my club soccer team, several teammates and I would chant the same phrases to each other before heading out to the field to start the game. There were also a few of us that had a specific hand shake that we’d perform as well.

 – I started each club soccer game by bending over with my hands on my knees, only standing upright when the referee blew the starting whistle. It mostly helped calm my nerves. 🙂

 – In college, I wore my hair the exact same way for each game: a high ponytail, braided, with a strip of pre-wrap that acted as a headband. I would also put on my shin-guards, socks and cleats the same way.

 Now, I know I’m not the only one out there that has a few OCD habits they perform before certain events, so before you go all “judge-y eyes” on me, I’d like to turn the tables, and ask YOU…..what are some of YOUR superstitions? 🙂

oh, and just for grins, here are some more wacky antics performed by some famous people (you see, they’re not that different from you and me! 🙂 )

 – Penelope Cruz rubs her head to ward off bad luck

 – David Beckham wears a new pair of soccer cleats before every game, and never goes without his Armani underwear! 🙂

 – Pete Wentz literally counts on the Count from Sesame Street as his good luck charm, and gets worried when he doesn’t see him on something.

 – Eartha Kitt never stayed in a hotel room above the 8th floor.

 – Rainn Wilson never says the word “MacBeth” while in the theater. He believes it brings him bad luck.

 – If Serena Williams doesn’t tie her shoe laces correctly, bounce the ball five times, and carry her shower shoes to the court with her, she feels she will lose a game.

(source)

You see? Just like US Magazine claims each week, “Stars….they’re just like us!”

🙂

hearts and hugs,

B.

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Comments

  1. My boyfriend is very superstitious and I think it comes from a sports upbringing, like you mention. If he doesn’t watch a Syracuse basketball game, then they will lose (except last night, sore subject in our house). He also must be wearing a specific t-shirt, and can only watch it on one of the TVs in our house. He has noticed that they lose if he goes to a bar… It’s a very complex equation “that I will never understand.”

    • haha too funny! you know, the last thing is a bit of a catch 22…because if they lose, he’ll want to go to a bar to feel better, and that means that they’ll lose again! thus the vicious cycle continues… haha

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