With Friday the 13th just a day away, I found myself thinking about superstition and its inextricable link to dating. When we are young, we are warned not to walk under ladders, to avoid black cats at all costs, never open an umbrella inside the house and under no circumstance should we ever break a mirror. There are even superstitions such as throwing salt over one's shoulder or keeping a rabbit's tail for good luck in order to prevent some kind of so-called tragic fate from happening.
What's tragic is the idea of superstition and the ways in which we allow the consequential paranoia to affect our personal lives. I look back on all the dating disasters I had in my early 20's. True, being on someone's gaydar was perceived as superficial not to mention almost always physical, but when you're naive enough to believe that somewhere amidst the glitter, endless profiles and strobe lights lies a white knight in shining armor, you don't know any better. And while so many of these knights turned out to be no more than fools on donkeys, there were a few potential Mr. Bradshaw's along the line. I often wonder why the good dates never materialized into more meaningful long term relationships? Was my destiny foiled because I forgot to wear my lucky horse shoe underwear? Could it be that I jinxed it by calling him before the third day? Or was it because I was too caught up in the do's and don't s of dating super-steria to notice that he was simply not that into me to begin with?
I find so many of my wonderful girlfriends caught up in the very same predicament. Instead of accepting the reality of the situation for what it is they choose to adopt superstitious beliefs in order to justify the disappointment of yet another failed relationship. Yes, it's much easier to use superstition as an excuse when our feelings are at stake, but just like Prince Charming superstition is a myth designed to safeguard us from an inconvenient truth that will inevitably set us free. The sooner we accept spilled salt for what it is, the sooner we can dust it off the table and try again. I couldn't help but wonder, when it comes to relationships, why are so many of us still knocking on wood?