Ethan Newmayer, a free-lance photographer working for Louis Vutton, , who hails from, Chula Vista, San Diego, three pieces of folklore for this collection.
The interview was run, within his studio, at Orchard Avenue, on the outskirts of the University of Southern California.
Folklore Performance: To wish on an eyelash.
“I talked to Mike about wish related folklore, do you know any?” – Stanley Kalu
STORY: Oh, I have another one, Maria and I do this, If you have like an eye-lash stuck on your face, the other person swipes it off and then you press your fingers together with the eyelash between your finger tips and whoever pulls away the eyelash tucks it in their shirt and gets to make a wish. It’s like a wishbone, with eye-lashes.
Background Information: the tradition of wishing on a fallen eyelash comes from common folklore during the 19th century. Wishers would place the fallen eyelash on the back of their hand before throwing it over their shoulder as they imagined what they wanted.
It was also said that the devil would try to collect as much human hair and eyelashes as possible to gain power over people.
Context of performance: This has been described above.
Thoughts: I question whether most people believe in folk practices like this one or whether the act itself is simply comforting. I’d lean towards my latter statement because there is comfort in tradition.