Bananas on a Boat – Bad Luck

Tanner is a student at USC and one of my closest friends. He grew up in Brea California, on the boarder of Orange Country. He was a part of both soccer, skate, and fishing communities as a kid, as well as the public school community and his local community. 


Performance: So my dad has a boat and we go out to Catalina island all the time…we go fishing. So whenever we go we bring a lot of snacks: uncrustables, cheese sticks, beers (obviously) haha. Last time we went out with our buddy Max. And max brings out bananas onto the boat. so he brings bananas and we didn’t even realize it. so we go into the cooler and see the bananas – well wait first off we hadn’t caught ANY fish at that point. and we were like what is going on what is happening here. And the next day, the morning after he goes to the cooler and whips out a banana and starts eating it. and I didn’t realize it at the time but my dad starts talking about how having bananas on a boat is bad luck and if you have bananas on a boat while you’re fishing you will not catch fish. So…bananas on a boat while you’re fishing is bad luck.”

Oh. Do you believe it?

“I’ve never been fishing with bananas…and we usually do well… and the one time that Max brought bananas on the boat we didn’t catch any fish. so yes. I believe it.


Response: I’ve heard this superstition before, and can confirm that it has multiplicity and variation. Tanner later explained to me that the reason for the banana superstition originated from days where people would buy bananas full of spiders and transmit disease and infestation via their large fishing boats. I had never heard this explanation before, and am sure it is one of many used for this superstition.