10-12-2013   Leave a comment

For most of my life I’ve had older people telling me things that I had a hard time believing.  Growing up in western Pennsylvania put me in contact with many people with their genealogical roots in eastern Europe.  I wasn’t more than seven or eight when a elderly neighbor lady who spoke broken English told me to wear cloves of garlic around my neck to ward off evil spirits.  It wasn’t until many years later that I discovered she was an immigrant from Romania where they have a history of evil beings and Vlad the Impaler

Old wives tales are present in every society it seems and have been passed down through the generations as being the gospel truth.  When I lived in Korea I found out the best way to insure a safe pregnancy was to hang a strand of charcoal pieces over the doorway to your home.  I thought it was nonsense but after a group of elderly Korean ladies threatened me with bodily harm, I just smiled and got out of their way.  They put the charcoal in place and there was once again peace in the valley.

Here’s an interesting collection of “Old Wives Tales” for you women out there.  I can’t verify that they’re true or that they actually work but I can guarantee that somewhere out there are a few Old Wives who believe it.

  • If you happen to step on a man’s toes, whether dancing or in a crowd, it is the man you’ll marry. So the next time you step on a man’s toes, take a real good look at him, you just might be looking The One.
  • Eve didn’t have any choice as to who she gave the apple to. But before you give your apple away, try this. Cut it in half and put all the seeds in a pan on the stove. Name each seed after a man you know. Then quickly heat the pan. The first seed to pop will reveal the name of the man for you.
  • A woman who puts on a bridal veil and holds orange blossoms on any occasion, but not her own wedding, will never marry.
  • If you are young woman make a pie. While trimming the pie crust, if it falls over your hand, that is a sign you will marry young.
  • If a woman braids her hair and leaves out a strand, it is a sign she will marry within the year.
  • If there are many men in your life and you wonder which one you’ll marry, take 12 slips of paper and write on each slip the name of one of the men. Place the 12 slips into an envelope and sleep with it under your pillow. Each morning draw one slip from the envelope at random. Rip it up and toss it away. The last slip of paper in the envelope is the name of the man you will marry.
  • If you have a man in your life and you want him to remain interested in you and to pop the big question, never let him carry your comb in his pocket.
  • A woman who makes a good looking bed will have a good looking husband. And a woman who has an unkempt bed will have someone else’s husband.
  • If you haven’t met Mr. Right yet, but want to see his face, follow these steps. Find a well. Make sure it’s not covered so that you can actually look down into it and see the water. On the night of the full moon, toss a penny into the well. The face you see at the bottom of the well is the man you’ll marry.

Unfortunately ladies most of you will one day be an Old Wife. I’m supplying you with these tales so you’ll have something to pass along to your daughters. It’s your motherly responsibility to keep this tradition alive. Every generation has the right to hear this nonsense and then to pass it along to their daughters.  It keeps life interesting.

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