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Author, A. J. Llewellyn » Superstition

Superstition

Current mood:  amused
Category: Life

Have you ever realized how much of our daily lives and therefore movies and books are ruled by superstition? I had a grandmother who would say a woman was coming to visit if somebody dropped a fork. If it was a knife on the floor, a man was coming to the house.
Sometimes they did, making me and my brothers think that mad old bat was a witch.
Fear and ignorance have fueled mass hysteria for centuries and we, the writers capitalize on these things.
Actors are probably the MOST superstitious people I have ever met.
I know people are laughing this morning over actor Nicolas Cage Cage hiring a voodoo priestess to remove what he perceives to be a whammy from the set of his new movie “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice.”
This doesn’t seem all that bizarre to me actually. I worked on two movies at Haleakala Volcano in Maui, Hawaii and kahunas were regularly brought it to leave offerings for Goddess Pele. I immortalized all this in my book Beyond the Reef.
Pele never said yes. She wants what she wants. And she doesn’t want movie stars on her precious crater.
Boxers are a superstitious bunch, too.
I once interviewed former heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis and he had a near-meltdown when a new assistant tried to lace on his right glove first for a morning of sparring at the Kronk Gym in Detroit. In boxing, you lead with the left and Lewis lives by the rule.
A few years ago, I took the job as personal assistant to an actor on one of the back-to-back movies shooting in Maui. He had so many superstitions I lost count of them. As a matter of fact, I had to write them down to keep track.
He was so deluded, the superstitions kept piling up. They made no sense to me, but hey, he was making the big bucks, I was making Walmart wages, so I shut up and did my job.
I lost sleep over his phone ringing four times before being answered. After the fourth ring he believed, he would hear of the death of someone close.
He was so irrational I sometimes feared the ‘someone close’ might be me.
I had to count the number of flowers in the bunches that the hotel staff routinely put in his room. They had to be odd numbers. Even numbers meant bad luck.
He held onto childish superstitions of not stepping on cracks on the sidewalk. He would spin his coffee cup around three times before taking a first sip…it went on and on.
I swear…he made up this stuff on a daily basis, but none of this is new.
Superstitions of black cats, vampires…you name it, have always fueled our fears and fantasies.
In 1576, when the plague gripped the city of Venice, some of the unfortunate victims were thought to be vampires. A recent mass grave discovery showed the skeleton of a very young woman buried with a brick shoved down her throat.
They thought she was a vampire. I was haunted by the image and it prompted me to write the book Quartetto, a paranormal, vampire tale set in the year Venice was almost destroyed.
My co-author Stephani Hecht and I had fun researching the period and actually a lot of our present superstitions about money and love seem to have come from that era.
I have my own superstitions but the less said about those, the better.
It might bring me bad luck.

Aloha oe,

A.J.

Currently listening:
Growing Pains
By Mary J Blige
Release date: 2007-12-18

One Response to “Superstition”

  1. That is so nice that you both recognize and respect our island’s customs. Maybe it’s because you’re not a mainlander lol! A lot of Americans from the mainland are very ignorant in general and often are disrespectful. The stories told of those who remove lava rocks, and other gifts from the earth are tremendous especially those who choose to challenge those disbelief. Growing up with both Native American and Native Hawaiian backgrounds, I’ve learned never to question anything but just do it!

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