A few weeks ago, I did something that stopped a party. Something that made perfect sense to me, but looked totally crazy to everyone else.
The Refinery29 team was toasting the launch of our #GimmeFive initiative with Michelle Obama — you know, popping bottles, having a good time. As we were celebrating, some champagne spilled out onto the table. I did what everyone in my family would have done: Immediately put my finger in the droplets and dabbed it behind my ears. This resulted in an awkward silence. It was like one of those scenes of a movie where the record comes to a screeching halt and everyone just stares at you like, "Um, who are you?" But, spilling wine or bubbly and NOT dabbing it behind your ears is considered terrible luck in Italy. Once I explained that to everyone, the party went on, and I even saw a few people discreetly partake in my superstition (a little luck never hurt anyone, right?).
This got me wondering about food superstitions around the world. What seems innocuous to one person can be bizarre to another. I asked everyone around the R29 office to share the food superstitions their families follow at home, and the results were surprising, funny, and often delightfully absurd. Click through to find out what the luckiest number of dinner party guests is in China, what you should NEVER pass hand to hand at the table, and how wasting food might influence your entry into heaven.