Saturday, November 10, 2012

This American Life - Meet Mia's Clan

When I sat down to write Finder's Keeper, the upcoming Karmic Consultants release, I knew it was going to be about a battle between magic & science - and that my uber-scientific heroine was also going to be going head to head with her family superstitions.  She's Italian-American, has an adorable Nonna who is the matriarch of the family, and she's dealing with a pervasive family superstition about a magic watch that grants the bearer true love.

Little did I know at the time, how closely my art was imitating life.  Yesterday at Nikki Duncan's blog, I mentioned a radio piece I'd heard - a piece that might as well have been about my heroine Mia's family.  It wasn't until a couple weeks ago, long after I'd been through edits and put my book to bed, that I heard this story on NPR one Saturday.  A This American Life tale about an Italian-American family with a very specific family tradition.

They mail pants and/or little dresses to expecting mothers in their family - and whichever one the mama gets, that's what she has - boy or girl.  Apparently it's been going on for generations and over twenty babies.   You can listen to the story HERE.

My family doesn't have any big traditions like that.  We spin the kitchen table during card games to turn the luck, but other than that, I can't think of any superstitions we hold to.  I kind of wish we had more!  The Rubies - a writing group I'm a member of - send "heel clicks" to one another for good luck (like Dorothy clicking her heels three times). 

Do you or your family have any superstitions?  Do you buy the one about the magic pants/dress?

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