Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Old Folks’ Science or Superstition? A self-administered test (50 items)

Dr Abe V Rotor
Living with Nature - School on Blog
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Lesson: As we move away from tradition and embrace new knowledge, we find ourselves often in quandary: "Is this tradition just a superstitious belief, or it has scientific explanation?" Here is a simple test to find out. Answer the following items to the best of your knowledge.


Life on the farm, mural detail, AVR

Science or Superstition? Find out the answers at the end of this test and the corresponding rating.

1. Raining while the sun is out breeds insects.

2. Nangka may bear fruit from its roots underground.

3. You know how big ube tuber is by its mound.

4.Karurayan na dumalaga (all white female fryer) is best food for a recuperating patient.

5. Swarming of winged termites and ants predicts siyam-siyam (18 days of uninterrupted rainfall)

6. Red sky in the west means coming of a typhoon.

7. When you break a glass, take another and break it too, to break the omen.

8. Kapre (ogre) lives on old trees; dwende (dwarf) lives among mushrooms.

9.When a spoon is accidentally dropped, a female guest is coming. If fork, a male guest.

10. When buying watermelon, choose that which has wide spaces between the “ribs.” It is more fleshy and sweet.

11. Actually you can hear the earth breath on a quiet summer night.

12. Predominance of cogon grass means the land is not worth farming.

14. Oranges with indented bottom are sweeter.

15. Powdered rhino horn is medicine and aphrodisiac.

16. Worms improve the taste of bagoong or patis. (fish sauce)

17. Just wipe kitchen with mild vinegar to drive ants away.

18. Large and round macopa contains seeds, so with lanzones.

19. Prune standing corn stalk to get fuller cobs.

20. There are people who cook ampalaya which tastes more bitter.

21. A brooding animal, like snake, is ferocious.

22. Guava seeds may cause appendicitis

23. Ginseng increase human virility or has aphrodisiac property.

24. Cut the leaves (pruning) of rice seedlings before transplanting in the field to make them grow faster and bigger.

25. When you eat twin bananas you will bear also twins.

26. During full moon crabs are lean.

27. Phases of the moons influence behavior (lunatic effect).

28. Gate must not face directly the dead-end of a road.

29. Planting cassava stem upturned will produce poisonous tuber.

30. Ring around the moon means a storm coming.

31. When you have a fishbone stuck, get the cat and gently rub its paws on the affected area.

32. When a spoon is accidentally dropped, a female guest is coming. If fork, a male guest.

33. A brooding animal, like snake, is ferocious.

34. Food offering at the family altar during festivals is homage to the spirits

35. Say tabi-tabi when entering a thicket.

36. Put sugar as fertilizer to get sweeter fruits.

37. Some people suffer body aches before a typhoon brews near.

38. When walking through a forest, wear a face mask backward to ward of tiger or lion attack.

39. When harvesting the first fruits, get an oversize basket and pretend that the harvest is heavy.

40. Expect rain if hordes of dragonflies hover low.

41. Size and shape of lips of a woman reflects her private organ.

42. Get male flower and introduce it into the female flower to enhance the fruit to develop.

43. Crickets are noisiest in summer.

44. When transplanting banana tiller take out the eyes (young tiller buds) arising on the corm.

45. Wet your navel with the first raindrops in summer.

46. Noisy hen layers are not productive layers.

47. Roosters do sometimes lay eggs which are very small and sterile.

48. Throw sand into axils of coconut leaves to prevent beetle attack

49. Black cat bring bad luck when you meet them on the corridor or street.

50. A noisy salaksak or kingfisher is an emissary of death.

ANSWERS: False answer to 7,8,9,11,13,16,22,25,28,29,31,32,34,35,36,39,41,45 and 47.
Reference:
Living with Folk Wisdom by AV Rotor, UST Publishing House España, Manila. Book available at National Book Store, and UST Publishing House.

RATING: 46-50 Outstanding. You must be one of the old folks.
41-45 Very Good . You must be living with old folks.
36-40 Good. You have a good grasp of tradition
31-34 Fair. You are not really moving away from tradition.
30 and below. Read more about old folks' science and superstitious beliefs.


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