Category: Lucky Animals

Will the Year of the Ox be a Lucky One?

Will the Year of the Ox be a Lucky One?

From the 27th floor of my hotel in Hong Kong’s Central District, I had the perfect view of all the New Year’s Eve festivities that were unfolding on December 31st, 2007. At the stroke of midnight, an explosion of fireworks erupted from not one, but six or seven of the gleaming skyscrapers that lined the harbour view. It was a spectacular sight. As all of the friends and relatives that I had invited to share this moment with me responded to the moment with merriment, my aunt commented, “This is going to be a very lucky year…2008, especially with the ‘8,’ which corresponds to prosperity.”

Well, we all know now how that turned out.

Today is the first day of the Chinese New Year. After months of relentless economic disaster around the globe, it seems that even the once unsinkable “economic dragons” of Asia are beginning to falter. The New York Times article published today says it all: “Year of the Ox Is Looking Inauspicious.” (To read the article, click HERE.) The ox, according to the Chinese zodiac, symbolizes calm, hard work, resolve, and tenacity. One could argue that it’s going to take a lot of hard work this year to ensure that good luck and prosperity return again. Perhaps it’s a good thing that America now has a president who was born in the year of the Ox. Yes, Barack Obama was born in the Ox year of August 4, 1961. And five days into his new job, he’s already demonstrating the steadfast, hardworking nature that is associated with the sign.

For more interpretations on how this year could affect your luck, check out some of these articles:

Vancouver Sun: “Seeking predictions for the Year of the Ox”

Reuters: “Feng Shui masters say Ox year likely full of burden”

Examiner: “It’s the Year of the Ox, Obama-style”

–Kevin

Lucky Q&A: The Elephant in the Room

Every so often, we receive questions from readers regarding different aspects of luck.  We welcome these questions and make every effort to answer all the queries that come our way.

Q: I read through your very enjoyable LUCK guide last Thursday and was inspired to purchase an elephant statuette for the home. Question: Where to place the elephant for optimal luck? Okay to put it on the porch facing away from the front door? If you could supply any guidance I’d appreciate it. –D. Simon

 A: There are several different schools of thought regarding lucky elephant placement:

 –It can be placed outside the entrance of a home (facing the doorway) to protect the home.

 –Some believe that the elephant should be placed inside the house, preferably in the front hall with the trunk facing inward to direct good luck into the home.

 –Others believe that the elephant should be placed in the front hall with its trunk toward the front door to “welcome in” good luck.

 Our advice is to try out all the options over several weeks and pay attention to which orientation works best for you.

–Kevin

(Photo by Echoforsberg)

A Penis a Day Keeps the Viagra Away

A platter of ox and dog penises.

A friend and I were discussing a recent article in Vogue magazine about the restaurant scene in Beijing. When I mentioned this article to my boyfriend, he forwarded me a link to the (English) online edition of the German magazine Der Spiegel [HERE], which ran an article about a restaurant in Beijing that specializes in dishes made from animal penises.

By way of explanation, the article quotes an apparently familiar Chinese saying: “Chinese eat anything with four legs, except tables. And everything that flies, except airplanes,” and then proceeds to describe the dishes in detail (and with photos!). The penises (ox, donkey, dog, sheep, yak) are prepared in a variety of ways (raw, roasted, with curry) and are thought to increase male virility and improve sex drive in men. Women are warned away from eating animal testicles, but it is noted that eating penises is risk free and may even improve a female diner’s skin.

So, what does all this have to do with luck? Glad you asked.

Toward the end of the article, the author writes, “At the end of the meal, Lucy [the waitress] hands over a little red box with ribbons on it. The dog penis bone is inside. It’s a souvenir, she says, and is supposed to bring luck and protect the holder against ‘harmful influences.’”

This is where I make a bad joke about how it wasn’t so lucky for the dog.

–Deb

(Photo by Reuters)

Did the Football Star Kill the Unlucky Cat?

Inter Milan footballer Luis Figo was accused last week of killing a black cat that lived at the football club’s training ground, believing that it would turn the team’s luck around following a string of losses.

Vittorio Feltri, editor of the Libero newspaper, sparked the controversy when he alleged in an article that Figo had deliberately run over the “beautiful black cat” with his sports utility vehicle. Figo vehemently denied the charges, stating on his club’s website that it was “completely untrue.” Feltri, however, stands by his story, stating that he will bring out witnesses if the controversy goes to court.

Whatever the truth may be, Italian football fans are up in arms over the controversy, and the popular Portuguese star was booed by the crowd as he arrived for training last week, with one fan even holding up a banner that read “Figo, you’ve killed a black cat, the whole world is disgusted with you.”

Since the Middle Ages, black cats have been associated with witchcraft and bad luck. It was believed that if a black cat crossed your path it was a sign that a witch was around, or an indication that the devil was taking notice of you. Either way, they were creatures to be avoided.

Which brings us back to the Inter Milan cat: Since its demise, the club has continued its run of poor results, and Figo was injured in the match that followed the supposed SUV vs black cat incident. It is rumored that the team has since paid a visit to the Pope, a cat lover, in an attempt to rid themselves of the black cat’s curse.

For the full story, click HERE.

–Kevin 

(Cat depicted in the above image was not harmed in any way. Photo ©2007 by Dino Quinzani)

An Unlucky Royal Wedding?

Peter Phillips and Autumn Kelly’s wedding was supposed to be a fairy tale affair. Here was the dashing favorite grandson of Queen Elizabeth II (and for those who care, 11th in the line of succession to the British throne), marrying a beautiful working-class girl from Canada. But the wedding became dogged by bad luck last week when it was revealed that the bride-to-be had sold exclusive photo rights of the wedding to Hello! magazine for £500,000. The press began to call her “the new Princess Pushy,” photos of her twin brother smoking “a very suspicious looking cigarette” surfaced, and Prince William (who once hero-worshipped his elder cousin) inexplicably decided not to attend the nuptials in favor of the wedding of his ex-girlfriend’s brother in Africa. And when the big day finally came last Saturday, we were dismayed to notice a few more unlucky details:

–Green happens to be the unluckiest color and is not recommended for any special occasion, let alone a wedding. Yet here was the entire bridal party outfitted in what has now been dubbed “Kelly Green”– bridesmaids in green chiffon dresses, groomsmen in green brocade waistcoats, and even the groom sported a green tie. (And don’t get me started on how the English bespoke industry must have felt to see Peter walk down the aisle in such an ill-fitting cutaway.)

–The bride wore a pearl necklace and earring suite given to her as a wedding gift from the groom. Pearls should never be given as wedding gifts, since they mean that tears are to follow.

–Princess Beatrice (the daughter of Prince Andrew and Fergie) showed up wearing a rather ridiculous headpiece made of fake butterflies. If seeing three butterflies together on a leaf indicates that bad luck is on the way, we can only wonder what a hatful of them must mean.

–Kevin

Lucky Sh*t

On the surface of it, there are few things in life that seem less lucky than poo. (My sister, who recently had a baby, tells me that “poo” is the term of choice for new parents, who, I guess, spend a lot of time thinking and talking about it.) But actually poo has a long history of lucky associations.

Stepping in livestock poo (aka manure) has been considered lucky since the 17th century, as was having bird droppings land on you.

The Japanese have an incredibly popular good luck charm called Kin no Unko (The Golden Poo), which gets its lucky vibe from the fact that the word unko is a homonym for the word that means “luck.” To get some, click HERE.

And the Parisians believe that it’s quite lucky to step in dog poo, particularly with your left foot.

As a New Yorker who has had my fair share of run ins with dog poo, I have to ask, Why should the French have all the good luck? They already have better bread, Alain Delon, and a keen sense of style. But I shouldn’t worry. The genius designers at Atypyk are working to bring that little lucky merde to your doorstep. If you visit their site by clicking HERE , you can click on “LUCKY SHIT,” which will allow you to virtually visit the factory where this crap (literally) will be made and packaged, see the vehicles that will be used for transport, and you can become a member of the LUCKY SHIT fan club.

What more could a person want?

–Deb