We’re going to lay it on the table Glasgow. You’re weird, We’re weird, let’s face it we’re all weird, and be honest it’s actually quite refreshing. The world would be a mighty boring place otherwise.

Believe it or not 1 in 6 people across Britain freely admit to being superstitions and believe in old wives tales. (The other 5 had their fingers crossed.)

Here are 13 of our favourite Glaswegian old wives tales.

13. Magpies

the birds attack

Saluting a magpie/Break your sorrow/ Magpie seen by two, brings good luck to both of you/ 1 for a girl, 2 for a boy. 3 for sorrow, 4 for joy. 5 for silver, 6 for gold, 7 for a secret never to be told.

P.S If you’re unfortunate enough to gaze upon eight of the winged menaces you’re probably seconds from being mugged for your silver, by an army of kleptomaniac magpies.

12. Too Much Sugar and Overeating Gives You Worms


Being told by your parents that eating too much sugar would result in you ending up with worms. This is partially true!!! Well not really, but a noticeable increase in a child’s appetite can be as a result of intestinal worms, eating the food in a child’s stomach.

11. Crusts and curly hair


Sadly scientists can find no evidence suggesting that eating your crusts would give you nice shiny curly hair. (One of our writers refutes this, blames “plain Scottish loafs” for his locks and in all fairness his hair is the curliest we’ve seen in all existence.) Proof that if there was any type of crusts with the supernatural power of hair curling it would certainly be the “Scottish Plain” (borne in the black fires of hell) crust.

10. Walking over three stanks (drains)

three drains bad luck

Originally it’s believed that because of the unluckiness surrounding the number 3, walking over three stanks would result in the recipient receiving awful unforgettable luck. (The kind that sees you run for the bus, trip, skin your knee, miss your bus and then without warning an unscheduled phantom bus, drives behind and splashes you.) It is not uncommon to see individuals attempt elaborate parkour stunts to avoid crossing the hallowed three stank precipice.

9. New Shoes on the Table

catch a ball

Never. Ever. Put new shoes on top of a table. A cardinal sin in any home. Upon purchasing and bringing said shoes back into the family home, expect to see older family members, lunging across the room, arm stretched yelling “Nooooo” in a slow motion fashion if any attempt is made to land the cursed trainers onto the table.

8. Somebody walked over your grave


The feeling at the back of your neck resulting in an involuntary body shudder. Meaning somebody has walked across the area of land where you are to be buried in the future. It is also said that if the hair on your arms or neck stands on end, it is somebody long passed attempting to make contact with you.

7. Swallowing chewing gum


Sadly, scientists have proven that chewing gum takes no longer to digest than many other food types. Although many people are probably still under the assumption swallowing chewing will either stick to your ribs, or stay in your body for seven years and gradually make you deathly ill. (Nobody can forget the sheer panic upon swallowing gum for the first time, and preparing to write their Last Will and Testament at 9 years old.)

6. (Ahem) Excessive m**********, possible blindness, hairy palms and acne

Scientifically it has been proven that there are no side effects for over indulging in the art of (ahem) self love, however there is very slight truth in *********** causing acne. Male arousal results in a surge of male hormones which in turn can cause acne, however no blindness and no hairy palms.

 5. If the wind changes direction your face stays like that

wind changes

Every child will have heard, if you keep making faces and the wind changes your face will stay like that. Is actually based in truth!!! Not really. In truth the superstition probably stems from an unfortunate incident in the past where a person pulling a stupid face, was afflicted by an involuntary muscle spasm in his face. And thus the legend/curse was born.

4. Cracking knuckles leads to arthritis

cracking knuckles

Scientists have proven that not only does cracking your knuckles not lead to arthritis, but is actually a stress relief for the participant. (What about the person sitting with them?) The popping of the knuckles is actually thought to be gas bubbles imploding and collapsing in the synovial fluid that surrounds the joints. However it has been medically recorded that over time “knuckle poppers” are more susceptible to inflammation and marginally weakened grip.

3. Never buy your own wallet/purse

empty wallet

You may laugh but how many people out there have ever bought their own wallet? Nobody in GlasgowLiving towers has, well one person, but he lost it. The ritual is said to have originated in Ancient Greece, wherein money follows money. It was said that it is equally as bad luck to gift an empty wallet as it is to purchase your own.

2. Opening an umbrella indoors

opening umbrella

It is said that opening an umbrella indoors will result in bad luck raining down on you. Apparently one of the explanations harks back to when the ancient Egyptians worshipped the Sun God Ra as their deity. They would shelter from the sun’s rays using umbrellas, and opening an umbrella inside was an insult to Ra’s omnipotent power.

1. Step on a crack and break your mother’s back

step on a crack

A research survey in 2010 discovered that 4 out of 10 adults would avoid walking on cracks in the pavement due to their superstitious beliefs. Strangely enough 6 out of 10 people believe there will be no repercussions if they fail to adhere to their superstitions, but are compelled to do so anyway.

So there you have it Glasgow, what did we miss and would you dare walk under a ladder while crossing a black cat? Let us know below.