Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Can Oil and Water Cure an Evil Eye Migraine Headache?

     Yesterday, January 30,  I happened to glance at the calendar that is hanging on the side of our fridge.
Someone, not mentioning any names, okay it was Ross, had flipped the page to February.
     This action prompted me to recall an incident from a few too many years ago.
I remember I was at work and it was a Friday. The date was two days before the end of the month.   I decided to be organized, so I flipped my daily desk calendar to the new month so that when I came in on Monday the date would be correct.
     My cube mate was horrified.  "You must never do that", she exclaimed.  "It's bad luck!"  I had never heard that before, but I didn't want to upset her even more, so I quickly put the calendar back to the current day.  I guess it had something to do with jinxing your chances of making it to that date in the future which really hadn't happened yet.  Get it?  I didn't either.
     I am not superstitious. I don't throw salt or pepper over my left or right shoulder.   Black cats don't frighten me.  I must have broken a mirror or two in my life.  I do not believe in good or bad luck. I do play the lottery, but that is a game of chance, not luck.
     I can't explain, though, why I cannot go to sleep unless the doors to both bedroom closets are closed.
      My grandmother, my father's mother was very superstitious.  She had some strange beliefs which she passed on to her children.
     One such belief was the evil eye.  The evil eye is placed on a person when someone is jealous or envious of another's good luck, good lucks or good fortune.
     My father used to suffer from migraines.   In order to determine if the headache was due to someone "giving the evil eye or maloik", my grandmother would drip olive oil into a basin of water, one drop at a time.   If the drops ran together in the form of an eye, the evil eye was the cause of the illness.
     The cure consisted of reciting prayers while dripping oil into the basin of water again and again -- sometimes for hours -- until a perfect array of oil forms that does not resemble an eye.  
     According to my research only women can perform this ritual which they pass down to their daughters along with the secret prayers, but this transference of knowledge can only be done on Good Friday.  
     I can still see my grandmother making the sign of the cross on my father's forehead right before she  began the oil and water ritual.  
     My father always wore a giant gold Italian horn around his neck which was supposed to ward off the evil eye.  Considering the fact that he gambled away everything he had, including his house, apparently the person giving him the evil eye had a lot more power than his horn did.
I'd be interested to know if you have unexplained rituals or family superstitions.  If so, have they been effective?

Here is today's entry from Anna's Diary:   
Thurs. January 31 1929
Loretta and her chum Mararet for lunch.  Went to Mrs. Wittenburgs for afternoon.  Also Elsie. Played bridge.  Then to Elsies house.  Talked with Dick reselling White Motor Stock.
[White Motor Co. was an American automobile and semi-truck manufacturer from 1901-1980.  It started out as a sewing machine company.]

1 comment:

  1. It would be brilliant if that was the prescribed cure for migranes now. Did it work, I wonder?