Placing bread upside down is bad luck in Italy
Bread is customary in a lot of Italian cuisines, so if you ever find yourself in a traditional Italian dining experience with a load of traditional Italian diners, remember this: don’t place the bread upside down in its basket. In Italy, this can be seen as a sign of bad luck as bread tends to represent the body of Christ in Christian countries. Disrespect the bread, you disrespect Jesus.
Seeing a Scarab Beetle is good luck in Egypt
Back in Ancient Egyptian times, amulets shaped like a Scarab beetle were said to protect people from misfortune in all its nasty shapes and forms. They were also viewed as the embodiment of the sun god Ra. Now, as it happens, this beetle turned out to be a typical dung beetle – but in Egypt, they’re still taken seriously, and seeing one is considered good luck.
Spilling water behind someone is good luck in Serbia
Have you ever, for whatever reason, spilt water behind someone whilst walking in Serbia? It sounds niche, we know, but that person could be in for a life of fortune and joy. See, in Serbia, spilling water behind someone is deemed a great way to grant them good luck. This could either be an accident or it could be done on purpose. Families and friends spill water behind each other before trips or job interviews.
Drinking water that reflects moonlight is bad luck in Turkey
This is a bad luck sign that has been confirmed by the Turkish Ministry of Culture, who have made it official that drinking water that reflects moonlight will bring bad luck. It is not known why exactly. Our guess is that a lot of people are taking liberties with moonlight-reflected water (usually the sea – not water you want to drink at the best of times) and the government is cracking down on it. But don’t worry, bathing in moonlight-reflected water is fine.
Bird droppings signify monetary gain in Russia
You may have heard about this in your own country, but it’s in Russia where this icky sign of good luck really takes hold. If Russians are defecated on by birds, they don’t become enraged; instead, they count their blessings. Bird droppings on a human, a home, or a car signify that money is coming your way. Do more droppings equal more money? Yes, they do.
Complimenting a baby is bad luck in Serbia
Seeing as though you cannot communicate with a baby beyond a few contorted faces and animal sounds, complimenting them seems like the only option you have when confronted with a newborn. And while this may swing in every other country in the world, do not try it in Serbia, where complimenting a baby is considered bad luck.
Saying “White Rabbits” at the start of each month brings good luck in England
If you’ve ever woken up in England at the beginning of a new month and interacted with a couple of friendly English people, you’ve probably heard the phrase, “white rabbits.” Maybe just “rabbit” or “rabbit, rabbit.” Whatever the case, a rabbit is always involved and it’s a way of bringing good luck to yourself and those around you. This tradition has been around since the early 1900s and was even said to be uttered by President Franklin Roosevelt at the start of a new month.
Spilling salt or pepper is bad luck in Azerbaijan
When food is plentiful and guests are hungry, condiments can at times go toppling over on the dining table. While this is a mere annoyance to most families and cultures, in Azerbaijan it’s straight-up bad luck. Spilling salt or pepper will spark outrage among diners in the Eurasian country. The remedy? Pour sugar over the spilt salt or pepper and leave it there until someone cleans it up.
Kissing a hard-to-reach stone in a Irish castle brings good luck
This is a good luck sign that you don’t have to hang around waiting for (discounting the queue). The Blarney Stone in Blarney Castle, Ireland is there for you whenever you please, within reasonable hours, and is said to grant good luck and eloquence to those who kiss it. Bear in mind, this stone is at the top of the castle and one must lean backwards and hold on to a railing to even get close to kissing it. Oh, and legend has it, local rapscallions like to relieve themselves on the Stone in the wee hours.
Putting keys on a table is unlucky in Sweden
Putting keys on a table is a classic move, isn’t it? It’s one of the rare things exclusive to adulthood. A careless toss of keys onto a table can speak volumes about a person’s day. If they skid half a foot, it’s all good. If they skid over two feet, you best run in the opposite direction. Luckily, in Sweden, you’ll never have to deal with this passive aggression as it’s considered bad luck.