Friday, 1 August 2014

1st August 2014 - Rabbits and Rain - Superstitions and 'Steddfods

Thought for the day : "A baby rabbit is a kitten - not a bunnie.."

Why should that be important?? 
There is an old habit in this area to call “White Rabbits” on the first of the month…
Can’t think that is was anything that we used to have when I was growing up

"Pinch and a Punch for the first of the month” was the one I remember
And “A slap and a kick for being so quick – and no returns “ was the response…

Not a source that I ever wish to depend on but the Guardian comments
"However, it was a common belief among RAF bomber aircrew during WW2 that saying "white rabbits" the VERY FIRST thing upon waking would protect oneself. The courage of these heroes cannot be doubted, yet even they looked to superstition for protection. "

Some seem to think that there are variations between saying "Rabbits" or repeating three times (or less)
and "White Rabbits"..
One writer is adamant:
"It is only white rabbits on the first of march. Every other month it's just rabbits. I don't know why - probably just superstition or a way to irritate your work colleagues!"

Another informs me :
"You are supposed to say it when there is an "R" in the month and say it three times spinning round and round for good luck for that month. So my gran used to tell me wonder what happens if there is not an R bad luck?"

There are geographical quirks as well ..
"In Yorkshire, people say 'Black rabbits, black rabbits, black rabbits' in the closing seconds of the old year. Then they say, 'White rabbits, white rabbits, white rabbits,' as their first utterance of the New Year. This is supposed to bring good luck."

There is a Yahoo site for such questions - and a summary includes the following:
"How Old is This Thing? More than I bet you thought! Pat in Springfield MA tells of "a girl who worked in our office at that time who practiced the tradition since the early forties". Dayle first heard about this sweet superstition at sleep-away summer camp in Maine about 35 years ago. Peg tells of her mother using it as a child in the late 1800's in Kentucky! Gerald dates it from England before 1918, and suspects it came over from Normandy with William I. Dick believes his father (age 86 in 2001) got it from an uncle in 1922, and the uncle caught it in the First World War.

Location? Okinawans suspect it originated in New Zealand. Rostall heard of it as a young child in Spain. A Massachusetts man in Hawaii was introduced to the concept in Athens Greece from a woman from St Louis in 1972. Many strands trace it to England. Jenni in Yorkshire UK says "White Rabbits, White Rabbits, Rabbits, Rabbits, White Rabbits", while her mother also in Yorkshire said White Rabbits just twice at New Year." 

Rabbits have not always been thought of as lucky, however. In the 19th century, for example, fishermen would not say the word while at sea, and in South Devon to see a white rabbit in one's village when a person was very ill was regarded as a sure sign that the person would die.

But either way – "White Rabbits" to you this morning..

Have to feel sorry for everyone in the Eisteddfod today – first day and it is tipping down..
Glad I don’t have to do that any more… !!!
Sandy Water Park Cycle Track & Eisteddfod Tents
 And that is a tent that is a little larger than the Crimson Moon tavern !!

Can imagine taking everything in and setting up in the rain ...   have done that for so many years ... rather a pleasure to be sitting in a warm office / living room and looking at the weather rather than experiencing it directly...    Have to go out later and pack the Bothy for Germany - but it may stop later ..

But probably only if I say "White Rabbits.. White Rabbits..White Rabbits.."



  1. On the island of Portland it has to be White Bunnies, as the word "Rabbit" is considered to be unlucky. Local folklore says that it is because rabbits, by their tunnelling, caused several deaths due to landslips in the quarries.