Superstition: pleading with thunderstorms

 Light a cigarette. Maybe it'll  make the bus come.

Light a cigarette. Maybe it’ll make the bus come.

Terry Pratchett mentions “pleading with thunderstorms” in The Truth, in which the younger son of an aristocratic family declines to enter the clergy because he regards prayer in this light.

Whatever your views on the efficacy of putting the hands together and hoping (another Pratchett quote, this one from Going Postal), it is a well-known factoid that certain behaviors bring on disaster, while others avert it.

 Be prepared for Snowpocalypse and it won't happen.

Be prepared for Snowpocalypse and it won’t happen.

Mine mostly have to do with meteorology.

  • Wash the car to make it rain.
  • Carry an umbrella to prevent rain.
  • If you go on vacation to escape the winter, while you are gone, your home town will experience unseasonably pleasant weather, and on the day you return, it will snow.

This year, thanks to the polar vortex which is a thing let me tell you, I found myself employing desperate measures. Here are my best successes:

 Since it's so bloody cold, at least I'll always be able to ice my knee after practice!

Since it’s so cold, at least I can always ice my knee after practice!

  • Put a snow shovel in the back of my car. This ensured that it did not snow for the rest of the winter.
  • Put an icepack—the kind in a neoprene sleeve that you wrap around a knee which has suffered in a speed-skating practice, for example—in the car, where it can be immediately wrapped around said knee after practice. This ensured that the car, which is parked on the street, remained well above freezing for the rest of the winter.
  • Winter is over! Now I won't die of thirst in my car.

    Winter is over! Now I won’t die of thirst in my car.

    In order to confuse the weather gods, also filled a gallon jug with potable water and put it in my car, as is my habit during non-freezing months. This was supposed to remind the weather gods to freeze my icepack. Didn’t work. The weather warmed up and stayed warm.

What practices do you keep to smooth over life’s little bumps?



Superstition: pleading with thunderstorms — 5 Comments

    • I’ll remember that one, Brenda! Also, washing the deck furniture helps to bring rain, if it’s all plastic adirondack chairs like mine.

      Either that, or something will kill a pigeon and leave the guts all over the clean lawn chair.

  1. I have found that the things I worry about don’t happen. The bad things that happen to me are things that I never thought of. So I try my best to worry about as many catastrophes as possible. This does have the side effect of making me worry too much and waking me up to worry in the middle of the night.

  2. Oh, Nancy, me too.

    Our ritual begins when we have a forecast of strong winds: we fill pitchers of water, shower, wash all the laundry–do every thing we can that needs water in hopes of averting the power failure that will mean no water, since we’re on a well.