People are a superstitious lot.

We, like many others, have been having a heat wave. Upon stopping in to my usual convenience store for a soda, I had this conversation with the usual cashier, a nice mid-20’s-ish guy:

Me: “Wow, it’s hot out there.”

Him: “Yeah, man. It’s scary. I hope it’s not that 2012 crap.”

Me: …

So I adopt my most reasonable tone.

Me: “It’s summer in the South, you know? Summer’s been pretty kind to us the last couple of years. It was inevitable that it’d get really hot again sometime.”

He actually looked relieved and said, “Yeah, that’s true.”

I was just a little taken aback by the fact that, of all the big-picture things to worry about connected with the hot weather, he wasn’t afraid that the record temperatures might be a further manifestation of global warming or anything, y’know, real. He was afraid of a stupid Central American myth.

Whaddya mean, “stupid”?

You have no clue. People are mega superstitious where I’m from. I have to hear it all day long. My homeboy* Neil deGrasse Tyson debunked the 2012 thing on video. I mean, obviously, it’s not a serious topic to ‘debunk’, but he made short work of it. I will link to the video when I’m off work, if anyone wants to see it.

Hey, speaking of superstition, I found my own. Not eating pork.

When I was young, and first breaking out of Christianity, I had a lot of Nation of Islam members and Nation of Gods and Earths members in my ear. They convinced me not to eat the dirty swine, which actually is something lots of black folks had been trying to teach me all my life, but I was really open to it at the age of 15, learning to get all pro black and militant.

Well, to this day, I don’t eat it, which is not strange, because I really don’t eat meat much in general, but I also FORBID MY DAUGHTER TO EAT IT!! That’s nuts! No scientific reason for that. I had to accept when it was pointed out to me that it is just silly superstition, pure and simple. Huh.

Now, I could rationalize it, (and I have) that I am just paying homage to the groups that were helpful in walking me out of a lot of darkness and delusion. But that doesn’t explain why I would force my daughter to pay that same homage. So yeah. I don’t know.

*figure of speech. Not claiming I know the man. Of course I would love to know him. Biblically.

So what goes through your head when you forbid them to eat it, Zing? I only wonder because I care. And because pork is goooooooooood.

I honestly never really thought about it at all. She’s 11, and for 11 years, it’s just been a fact that she can’t eat pork, and she never complained. After it was pointed out to me that it was basically a superstition (I think I read it in Hitchins’ God is Not Great), I finally started feeling funny about it, but I just still haven’t said to her, “You know, it is fine to go ahead and go crazy on pork chops now, if you like”

Having spent a number of years in a psychotic haze I’ve actually put forth a lot of effort to convince myself to believe in a very sensible and rational reality. For the most part I don’t allow myself the luxury of unexamined opinions. Now granted, I’m not the sharpest bulb in the shed, but I think for the most part what I believe to be the truth these days is pretty easily defensible with logic. But I still remember what it’s like to be wholly given over to passion and delusion, and I remember that my reality is one that I have consciously chosen. So I try and respect people whose views are very different from mine.

You wanna believe in God because that makes you happy? I won’t try and talk you out of it. You think people should make their own way in the world or starve? Yeah, I can see the wisdom there. You think a Kenyan national hoodwinked the Democratic party to secure a presidential nomination and continued to hoodwink the most ferocious spin machine since the 1930s, as well as more than half of the U.S. electorate to secure his election to the presidency? Really? Y-y-you really believe THAT? I mean…really? And you believe the world is going to end, for reals this time, on 12-21-2012? That date doesn’t look like a joke of any sort to you? Wow. I mean, I’m nuts by nature but even that seems pretty thick to me.

Here is the Neil deGrasse Tyson video.

And what the funk, here ya go.

And not afraid to mix metaphors to prove it! :wink:

That, I believe, is scrambled, not merely mixed.

I’ve never been the brightest tool in the socket, myself. That sounds dirty, somehow.

Well, y’know, you shouldn’t scramble all your eggs in one handbasket, not even on the way to hell. Or something like that.

Pork chops??? Give the poor child bacon!

No… make it a rite of passage. “As long as you were a mere child, you were not to partake of the swineflesh, and yet ye may not while under my roof, at my expense, for it is your father’s Way. But now that you are [insert arbitrary age/grade level here], I shall trust you, if as you make your own way you wish to taste of the pork at the lunchroom or at a good friend’s home, that you will do so in moderation, maybe as a BLT on whole grain bread. Be worthy of that trust.” :smiley:

Vincent: Want some bacon?
Jules: No man, I don’t eat pork.
Vincent: Are you Jewish?
Jules: Nah, I ain’t Jewish, I just don’t dig on swine, that’s all.
Vincent: Why not?
Jules: Pigs are filthy animals. I don’t eat filthy animals.
Vincent: Bacon tastes gooood. Pork chops taste gooood.
Jules: Hey, sewer rat may taste like pumpkin pie, but I’d never know 'cause I wouldn’t eat the filthy motherfucker.

~Pulp Fiction

Me: “Huh… I just thought it was August.”

I have such a geeky crush on Dr. Tyson! Thanks for that link, Nzinga.

You know, Inigo, I’ve been meaning to tell you - you’re one weird dude, but your threads are some of the most amusing ones we see around here most of the time. I enjoy them.

You have no idea. :smiley:

But thanks. Actually I make it a point to not post my really weird thoughts.

Some superstitions actually make sense (or made sense at one time,) like “Don’t walk under a ladder,” (don’t want someone to drop something on you, or to knock someone off a ladder, after all;) or not eating pork (which was sensible when the rules of Judaism and Islam were being formulated.) With modern refrigeration, understanding of parasitic illnesses, and sanitation practices, though, the pork thing no longer applies, so I’m all about a good BLT or pork chop (or barbecued pork, or a nice tenderloin, or ham, or beans cooked with a good hambone, or - well, you get the idea. Hogs make good groceries!)

Others, however, don’t make any sense at all - why should a black cat be any more or less “lucky” than any other color cat? Or a broken mirror bring more or less luck than any other piece of glass? I actually had a potential guest leave my hotel the other evening because our neighborhood cat crossed his path. A grown, adult man who seemed reasonably intelligent, but he couldn’t get past our sweet little black kitty!

(And, since this is MPSIMS, I’ll ask something that just occurred to me: Is the black cat superstition like the superstitions that surround redheads? Is it simply a case that they/we are rare enough to be viewed as “other” and something unusual that doesn’t fit into a mundane daily existence? Just a newly-theorized idea, but now I’m curious!)

And here is George Carlin on Angels, Goblins, and Zombies.

That’s the problem with zombies. They’re unreliable!
Anyone remember that post awhile ago about that lady who thought airplanes fly because everyone on the plane believes they will fly? Like, belief makes planes go up?