D comes from a family who spent many of their free time involved with an Armenian church in Virginia. She grew up learning traditional folk dances and making specialty dinners for the whole family from her grandparents. We met to talk about some future business logistics, but remembered the time we went to a working dinner at Carousel with her father.
D: I don’t know if you noticed when we were at Carousel, but my dad is super Armenian.
L: What do you mean?
D: Oh my god, you didn’t see. Ugh, he has the this silly superstition. It’s Armenian, so I guess I kind of do it too now that I think about it. My sister does it too. Armenians are weird about knives. If you hand someone a knife its really bad luck. Dad always has you put it down and pick it up. If you try to hand it to him, he legitimately gets angry and has you put it on the table or whatever and then he will get it.
D: It apparently ruins your relationship with that person who hands it to you. I don’t know where exactly it comes from, only that he takes it rather seriously. I sometime catch myself doing it too.
L: In a way giving a knife is an offensive gesture against your friendship/relationship.
D: Yes! Exactly, but most of the people in my family do it.