Flipped Over Shoes

The informant is Catholic, and of Irish descent. They agreed to meet up with me, and share pieces of folklore for this project.


“So this is like- It’s not actually like my personal heritage I guess, but, um one of my neighbours is, uh African and whenever we went to her house, she would tell us… We were close with her, like I went over there a lot. Um, that like if your shoes, or like with the soles, the bottom of it is facing the sky, then it’s like really bad luck. It’s like it means you’re gonna die or something. So, she would always make us turn our shoes over, and then like we started doing it at our house to cause we got used to it.”


This could perhaps stem from how having the bottom of shoes facing up creates a dissonance of sorts with the environment. Perhaps like how “up” is good in the U.S., having something normally facing “down” face up simply feels like a bad sign.

I also thought it was nice how easily this habit transferred over to the informant’s family.