• Superstition is the way...

    I struggle with cracks in pavements, mirrors hanging precariously, ladders strategically placed to walk under, and individuals with umbrella's one finger slip away from opening the rain catcher indoors; and don't get me started on black cats.

    But my superstitions can be thrown into an overdrive capable of sending me to nothing short of paranoia-extremis. There are so many that I couldn't even begin to categorise what I do, when I do it and how it affects me; these are all caused by my love and support of sports.

    I would blame my Neapolitan roots, they, the Neapolitans that is, are ridiculously superstitious. They however would associate most with religion. The saints and everything to do with death; in turn lottery numbers are based on this and people win and mostly lose.

    No, mine comes from years of backs turned to the TV screen, lucky underwear (and sometimes unlucky), tops worn, tops stowed away in boxes, food eaten, time food is eaten, drinks consumed and even amount of diesel in the car...

    A sports fan will know, will feel the same things. Follow your own superstitions to the tea, and you can support your team with so much greater ease, if you don't it's like setting up your own multiple "heart in mouth moments" from the word go.

    Is this the beauty or the beast of sport?

    Your participation is limited to something you have to do to feel safe and comfortable in the bosom of your seat/surroundings. Being a supporter can be tantamount to torture, you are constricted, there is nothing you can do to help your team, apart from feeling you have done enough to make sure you have given your best to ensure the positive vibes reach them.

    I can't watch penalties. I need to stand in a hallway with back to the screen to make sure I never catch them. I need to eat a specific spaghetti dish even though I have a wheat intolerance. I need to speak to Fabio, my football dalai lama before every game. There are many, many more. Every sports fan has their own.

    They grow, they evolve, they get more complex than the previous one. It consumes you, it affects your behaviour, everything changes, it can make a semi-grown up individual behave like a complete lunatic, a dithering mess in some cases.

    Superstition is horrible in day to day life, but if you are a sports fan, it's a thousand times worse.

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