MUNDANE MYSTERIES: Why Are Horseshoes Considered Lucky?

There may not be a good luck charm as well-known as the horseshoe. You see them hanging over entrances to homes & barns, depicted on clothing (like the “Lucky” brand), in jewelry, as well as in that magically delicious cereal. But why is the horseshoe considered a symbol of luck?

One of the earliest mentions of a horseshoe warding off evil is a 10th-century tale involving the patron saint of blacksmiths, Saint Dunstan, and his encounter with the devil. As the blacksmith worked in his shop, the devil entered & insisted on having his own hooves shoed. Saint Dunstan knew refusing the Devil’s demand wasn’t an option, so he ended up fastening burning hot horseshoes onto the devil’s hooves, the pain of which forced the devil to beg Dunstan to remove the shoes. So, the blacksmith agreed…under one condition: the devil was made to swear that he would never enter any building with a horseshoe placed at the entrance.

There are other folk tales about the horseshoe, but they had more to do with not their maker, but what they’re made of: iron. Iron had what were considered by many to be “mystical powers.” Witches were rumored to have been frightened by iron that they refused to travel by horseback (hence the broomstick). Meanwhile, there were some who thought iron could keep fairies & other mythical creatures away. Horseshoes also held another inherent value: the iron in them was considered so valuable that folks would even use them to pay their taxes amidst the Crusades in the 12th century.

Another theory as to the luck of the horseshoe comes from its symbolism in Mediterranean cultures, where they believed that the crescent shape stood as protection against the curse of the evil eye. Horseshoes are also linked to the number 7, which has long been considered one of the luckiest numerals & holds significance in many religions around the world, from Christianity to Islam, Judaism to Hinduism, Buddhism and others. Horseshoes traditionally had 7 nail holes (even though that number varies nowadays). Oh, and we can’t forget that the horses, themselves, have historically been viewed by many cultures as being lucky or sacred.

Got a Mundane Mystery you’d like solved? Send me an email:  [email protected].


MUNDANE MYSTERIES: Why Do We Call It “Black Friday”?

Once folks regained consciousness following their turkey coma on the day after Thanksgiving, a large majority of them did what so many red-blooded Americans have done through the years: they went shopping. Last year alone, shoppers spent a record $9.12 billion just in online shopping on “Black Friday”, with that single day bolstering the bottom line for retailers like Walmart, Target, Amazon, etc. But if “Black Friday” is such a financial boon, why is it called “Black Friday”? Because you have to remember…that “black” modifier was usually used for money-draining events, like the Thursday that led to the 1929 stock market crash or the 1869 Friday when the gold market collapsed & led to the financial ruin of so many American citizens & institutions. So, why do we call what’s hoped to be a positive experience “Black Friday”?

Clearly, the “black” label hasn’t always had a positive holiday-money-spending connotation, as it does today. Starting in the 1950s, employers, and soon after the media, began noticing that lots of folks were calling out sick the day after Thanksgiving (since, traditionally, Thanksgiving was not a paid holiday). It was a way for them to give themselves a 4-day weekend. And for businesses, that Friday was definitely the opposite of positive, since productivity significantly evaporated. Law enforcement also ended up not caring for that particular Friday, either. Because with everyone taking off of work & kids not going to school, traffic in major cities grew & gave rise to bigger headaches for first responders. So you see, the “Black Friday” label seemed appropriate.

The negative connotation of “Black Friday” spread via word-of-mouth & the media, leading some retailers to go so far as to try & rename the day as “Big Friday” as a way to avoid the association with disaster. Clearly, though, that (thankfully) didn’t stick. But over the years, the term “Black Friday” grew to become synonymous with record profits, thanks to post-Thanksgiving shopping deals, and it was ultimately permanently adopted as the proud name used by frenzied shoppers to describe the day they take off to do their Christmas shopping.

Got a Mundane Mystery you’d like solved? Send me an email: [email protected]


House of the Week – 11/24/23

🌟🏡 Jump at this chance to settle into a newly built modern farmhouse – no waiting, just in time for the holidays! Nestled in the stunning, gated Beallair Community in Charles Town, WV, this home is a masterpiece.

What’s inside?
🛏️ Three bedrooms, each with a private full bath
🌿 Luxury vinyl plank flooring throughout
🍳 Beamed ceilings & top-notch stainless steel appliances in the kitchen
🎨 High-end white gloss cabinets & quartz waterfall island
🔥 Two cozy gas fireplaces
📺 Smart home features with HDMI ports
🌤️ A large, screened Trex deck for relaxing outdoor moments
🚪 Chic sliding barn door into the office
🎶 Built-in sound system

And more upgrades!
🌬️ Rooms ready for ceiling fans
🚗 Rough-in car charging outlet in the 2-car garage
💧 Whole house water softener & reverse osmosis drinking system

Maintenance-free living 🌳:
✨ The Beallair Community handles all lawn care, pruning, and weeding!

Coming soon to the community 🏗️:
🏊 A clubhouse & community pool

Location perks 📍:
Close to Harper Ferry, eateries, shops, and major roads.

Don’t wait! Grab this rare opportunity to own a slice of elegance in Beallair. Schedule your private tour now! 🗓️🏡 #ModernFarmhouse #BeallairBeauty 🌟🏠✨

House of the Week 11/17/23

🌲🏡 Welcome to your enchanting log home dream at 13970 Brown Road! This traditional log haven offers:

🌟 Over 3000 sq ft of rustic charm
🛌 Main level living with hickory hardwoods
🎉 Fully finished basement on a sprawling three-acre woodland
🌳 Unique hand railings & an open upper-level loft
🛏️ Three bedrooms & 3.5 bathrooms
🔥 Majestic two-story stone fireplace
🎶 Iconic wrap-around porch straight out of a country song

Recent upgrades for your comfort:
🏠 Brand new roof (Oct 2023)
🚗 Fresh blacktop driveway
🪵 Logs professionally restored (Oct 2023)

And there’s more!
🚘 Massive three-level, four-car garage with a 10,000lb lift, extra bay underneath
🔨 Second-story workshop equipped with 200amp electric service

This is more than a home; it’s a retreat. 🍃 See it to believe it! Book your private tour today before it’s too late! #LogCabinLuxury #DreamHomeInTheWoods 🏡🌲✨