Traditions, Superstitions Ensure A Happy New Year!
“Happy New Year!” This greeting will be heard for weeks as the New Year gets under way this Sunday, January 1, 2017. For many, celebrating the New Year is immersed in traditions to ensure a prosperous 2017.
Besides the champagne toast and midnight kiss, New Year’s traditions and superstitions draw a connection between what people do on that FIRST day and what their fate will be for the rest of the year. Here are some ways to ensure a good outcome for the next 12 months.
Midnight Kiss – Kiss those dearest to you as the clock strikes twelve. Not only is this a fun way to celebrate with your favorite people, but it also makes certain those affections and ties will continue throughout the next 52 weeks. No lip lock? Be prepared for a year of coldness.
Money – Cash must be placed in every wallet in your home to guarantee prosperity. Don’t start things off with debt (easier said than done after Christmas!) Write those checks and mail them off before this Sunday, Jan. 1. Likewise, personal debts should be settled – especially if you owe me! However, do not pay back loans or lend money on January First as this will ensure you’ll be paying out all year. Also, don’t let the year start with bare kitchen cupboards or things will be that way throughout the year.
First Footer – The first person to enter your home after the stroke of midnight will influence the upcoming year. Ideally, he should be dark-haired, tall, and good-looking! Tradition states it would be even better if he came bearing certain small gifts such as a silver coin, a bit of bread, a sprig of evergreen, and some salt. Blonde and redhead first footers bring bad luck, and female first footers should be shooed away before they bring disaster down on the household. Don’t let first footers walk right in even if they live there. They should knock, be let in, and leave by a different door than the one through which they entered. No one should leave the premises before the first footer arrives – the first traffic across the threshold must be headed in rather than out. Also, these initial guests must not be cross-eyed, have flat feet, or eyebrows that meet in the middle. So, be wary of all your redheaded, female friends with no arch support and a unibrow!
Out With the Old – At midnight, all the doors of your house must be opened to let the old year escape unimpeded. Old Father Time must leave before Baby New Year can come in. So fling open those portals to assist him in finding his way out. However, it’s important to note that no objects – absolutely nothing, not even garbage – are to leave the house on the first day of the year. Don’t so much as shake out a rug or take the empties to the recycle bin on Sunday!
Good Luck Food – Most of us are familiar with the Southern tradition of eating black-eyed peas on New Year’s Day to attract good luck and money. Many cultures believe that anything in the shape of a ring is good luck, because it symbolizes coming full circle. So, think donuts, onion rings, and everyone’s favorite, bagels!
Work – Make sure to do, and be successful at, something related to your job on the first day of the year, even if you don’t go near your place of employment that day. Limit your activity to a token amount, though, because to engage in a serious work project on the first of January day is very unlucky.
Clothes – Wear something new on January 1 to increase the likelihood of receiving more new garments in the upcoming year. Also, DO NOT do the laundry on New Year’s Day lest a member of the family be washed away (die) in the upcoming months. Some folks go as far as leaving the dirty dishes.
Breaking Bad Habits – Avoid breaking things on that first day, otherwise wreckage be part of your year. Avoid crying on the first day of the year because that will also set the tone for the next twelve months.
Weather – Examine the weather in the early hours of New Year’s Day. If the wind blows from the south, there will be fine weather and prosperous times in the year ahead. If it comes from the north, it will be a year of bad weather. The wind blowing from the east brings famine and calamities. Strangest of all, if the wind blows from the west, the year will witness plentiful supplies of milk and fish but will also see the death of a very important person. If there’s no wind at all, a joyful and prosperous year may be expected by all. The forecast for Sunday, January 1, 2017 reads: New Year’s Day – A 20 percent chance of snow. Mostly sunny, with a high near 27. West wind around 5 mph. Hmmm. . . .
There you have it. Just a few things to consider as you ponder the next 12 months, 52 weeks, 365 days, 8,760 hours, 525,600 minutes, 31,536,000 seconds. Hope they’re happy!