Archiver > QUEBEC-RESEARCH > 2004-06 > 1088343907

Subject: Excerpt Of History
Date: Sun, 27 Jun 2004 09:45:07 EDT

"The custom of tipping some think began in the 17th century, when restaurants
had boxes labeled T.I.P.=To Insure Promptness, on the wall beside their
entrances. Patrons who wanted their food in a hurry deposited a few coins in the
box before they sat down."
"Barbers were once a lot more versatile than they are today. They not only
cut hair, they performed surgery as well. When the barber finished, the towels
used to soak up excess blood were hung outside to dry on a pole. As the wind
dried them they wrapped around the pole, making a design, so to speak, of red
and whites stripe, which became the striped barber pole."
"Advice to singles in the 1700s, if you wanted to get married, stand on your
head and chew a piece of gristle out of a beef neck and swallow it, and you
will get anyone you want."
"The belief that walking under a ladder propped up against a building will
bring bad luck comes from the early Christians. They held that the leaning
ladder formed a triangle, and that this symbol of the Holy Trinity shouldn't be
violated by walking through it. Those who did were considered in league with the
"Friday the 13th, in general, is considered an unlucky day. Adam and Eve were
supposed to have been kicked out of the Garden of Eden on a Friday. Noah's
great flood started on a Friday, and Christ was crucified on a Friday. Couple
this with the fact that 12 witches plus the devil, totaling 13, are necessary
for a satanic meeting, and the resulting combination of Friday plus 13 is a
deadly one."
"At one time in the ancient world, mirrors were used to tell fortunes. If a
mirror was broken during a reading, it meant the person was doomed. Later, this
was amended, and a cracked image in a mirror meant imminent illness. But
ultimately, the superstition of seven years bad luck is common today because it
was used to scare European servants in the 1400s and 1500s into to using extra
care when polishing their masters expensive mirrors. No servant, or anyone, for
that matter, wanted to court a life time of bad luck. The belief spread, and
became engrained in European culture.

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