Or have superstitions 'died out'? So many existed when I was a child - if you spilt salt you must take a pinch from the salt pot with your right hand and throw it over your left shoulder; see a pin and pick it up , all your days you'll have good luck, see a pin and let it lie, someone close is sure to die; if you drop a glove never pick it up yourself,, always ask someone else to do it for you; if you forget to say 'rabbits' on the first morning of the month, say 'white rabbits and turn round three times!
Yes they sound really daft in these days when AI is upon us but my mother stuck to all those - I suppose I did as a child but once I reached teenage years I realised just how ridiculous they were.
I do remember neighbours sitting under the stairs during thunderstorms - my mother would have liked to but my father ridiculed it and would not allow it - in fact he loved them and would stand with the back door open watching the lightning and the heavy rain - and reassuring my mother that thunder was just the delayed noise of the lightning as light travels faster than sound.
Remember the (now 'old fashioned' but if you wait long enough they will become high fashion again)bowls which folk hung from the ceiling to cloak the light bulb? We had one in the dining room and one winter's evening when my Aunt Kate was staying we had the light on and as we ate a cloaked hooded black figure went round the room. I was only small and caught their horror so we all three sat there mesmerised until my father came in and pointed out it was a fly walking round the inside of the light bowl!
Oh how times have changed and how blase we have become about such things. But will there be things we do which future generations find hilarious and pooh-pooh? I'm sure there will.
Looking through the book my niece sent me I find many which can be laughed at: July 1677 ' Beware of violent heat; and sudden cold, which are the great Distempers of this month and produce Pestilential Diseases; and June 1677 'use a light and thin diet for the stomach is weaker now than in former months'.**
**British Merlin 1677