Hiccups are just stupid. I’m certain that hiccups, poison ivy and mosquitoes are evidence that whoever runs this universe sometimes does things for no good reason. When I get hiccups, sometimes I can get rid of them by breathing just so – sort of like a Chi exercise. If I can’t get rid of them that way, then well, I have to let the Chi out and it sounds like I’m yelling Ralph, if you catch what I’m saying. Too much information?
Why am I telling you this? To let you know where I got this topic from. There have to be a few dozen old wives’ tales about how to get rid of hiccups. Cream soda, sipping water from the other side of the glass, a good scare, holding your breath for 13 seconds, 60 seconds or, my favourite, a year. That one works, however the outcome isn’t desirable.
So what other lists of Old Wives’ Tales are there out there? Fret not, I’ve done the research for you!
These tales are as interesting as the birthmarks they supposedly caused. Personally, I find birthmarks fascinating, but some people that have them are distressed by them. I think once you add the tales they’ve been told, you’ll understand the stress. Check a few of these out:
In Croatia, when a child has a birthmark, it is his/her mother’s fault: during pregnancy she wished something red to eat or drink (usually strawberries or wine) and she foolishly touched or scratched a part of her face or body damaging in that way her baby. The baby will have a mark (which is called “a wish”) on the exactly same place where his/her mother touched herself.
When a pregnant woman watches something burn (i.e. house, car, building, etc) the baby will be born with a birthmark.
And the dumbest, most ignorant one yet…
Your mom must have had sex with two men in the same day that she got pregnant.
There are quite a few more at the site. Some are quite sentimental and sweet, some are very personal, and a few are just downright foolish. Either way, they’re all interesting. They have some superstitions on birthmarks as well.
Here’s a small trove of more general Old Wives’ Tales. I think sometimes these tales have a root in truth, or at least in coincidence. Some just make me think that old wives had access to some great herbal remedies. Corsinet breaks them down into 2 separate pages – A to L and M to Z. Maybe you’ve heard a few of these:
A cricket in the house brings good luck.
Really? For who – the cricket? He’ll be lucky if I don’t crush him with the heel of my shoe, when I can’t sleep at 2 a.m.
Pictures of an elephant bring luck, but only if they face a door.
I need some clarity on this. Does the elephant have to face the door, or just the picture?
It’s bad luck to let milk boil over.
That’s one that makes perfect sense, especially if you’re the one that has to clean the stove.
By the time you get through this sites Old Wives’ Tales, you’ll probably be thinking those old wives had a lot of time on their hands and that must be all there is. Nay nay, my friend, nay nay.
Really, just typing the name of the site would have been an article in itself. Although, you won’t doubt that they have the most Old Wives’ Tales when you get to this site. They don’t even have a list – they have an index. Cats sneezing, stepping on a nail, ringing in your ears, knuckles cracking – the old wives have something to say about all of those. Most of it isn’t terribly good either and often involves rain. You’d think they’d notice the rain clouds before they notice a cat sneezing.
Here’s a one to try out:
Mirrors have always been fascinating to many people and that brings many superstitious tales and old wives tales into being. However, did you know that you could see the man you are to marry by looking at your own reflection in a mirror?
You will need a mirror that you can sit in front of and be comfortable such as a vanity, an apple and your hairbrush.
Sit down in front of the mirror; watch your reflection while eating the apple. Once you have finished the apple, keep watching your reflection while brushing your hair. The image of the man you are to marry will appear over your shoulder.
You may have to stare at your reflection until you have completely brushed your hair through or longer. The old wives tales does not say how long it will take so be prepared for sitting a very long time.
Pretty sure that doesn’t work for men looking for a wife. But Russian dating sites do!
I hope you got some good entertainment out of these tales and superstitions. Some are kind of fun to keep going, even though we know they aren’t true. If you’ve got a good family superstition or Old Wives’ Tale, let us know in the comments. We’re all ears!
Image credit: Steve Weaver