Cultural BUTONG #4: Chinese Superstitious Sayings That You Didn’t Know

Rupert Grint in Harry Potter as Ron Weasley (13)-717059

They’re not true…. are they?

A present you should not give your girlfriend/boyfriend is a pair of shoes. You are basically giving them permission to ‘walk out’ of your life. Come to think of it, this superstition could be pan-Asia because Koreans believe it also. If you recall, Goo Jyung Pyo’s fiancee mistakenly recieved the shoes that Jyung Pyo wanted to give Jandi. And what do you know, the fiancee sprinted out of his life, leaving our Boys Before Flower lovebirds behind (just like us viewers wanted)!


Avoid white flowers in your hair because it is bad luck. White signifies mourning of a death, just like wearing black is reserved for funerals in American tradition.

When your baby teeth fall out, keep track of which ones are from upper mouth and lower. If it is teeth from lower, throw it up in the air so that your new permanent teeth will grow straight up (not crooked). Opposite for upper teeth. This is more of an old wives tale than a superstition.

4 is unlucky to the Chinese. The word ‘four’, when spoken in Chinese, is pronounced the same as the Chinese word for ‘death’. Which understandably makes it a very unpopular number. So much so, that the Beijing traffic authorities have decided to abolish the number 4 from any newly generated registration plates. Which spares the 1,000 new cars that join Beijing’s roads every day from having to bear the unlucky omen. [Source: comparenumberplates]

Alright, that’s all I remember for now! If you have any interesting superstitions (not limited to Chinese superstitions), leave them down in the comments below.


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About Bumbleberri

Founder and editor of Asian Entertainment Blog, UnderratedGems. What I do in my free time: trying to get more sleep and satisfying my TV addiction. Currently in the process of a grueling job hunt.

3 responses to “Cultural BUTONG #4: Chinese Superstitious Sayings That You Didn’t Know”

  1. heisui says :

    I know about the “4” superstition. :3 But not about the other ones, I think the shoe one is kinda funny actually >.<

    • Bumbleberri says :

      speaking of numbers, have you heard of 201314? apparently a few dozen young couples waited in line in below zero weather for marriage certificates, all because of the date. Supposed to mean ‘love you yi Shang yi shi’… Funny how the numbers don’t really sound much like that haha

      • heisui says :

        No I haven’t! Sounds sorta like the 8.8.08 and 12.12.12 thing.

        By the way, I was watching Drama Go Go Go and there was a reference to the shoe superstition that you wrote about. So I understood it thanks to you! 😉

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