Do Photos Count?

“What are you doing Nani?”

“I am measuring the rice for cooking.”

“Why do you ritualistically put in some extra rice grains and then put back some in the container?”

“Traditionally we cook a little extra for an unexpected guest and make sure to keep some for tomorrow.”

“As if that tiny bit will help!” I scoffed. “Superstitious nonsense.”

“No harm done…”

“My cook’s son lost his job. There’s an opening for a driver but she refused.”


“The astrologer advised against it.”

I scrolled down for the Friday Fictioneer photo.

 Damn. Where could I spot a flying crow at night?


Words 101


Photo (c) Douglas M. Macllroy

Note: For the uninitiated, myna birds are very powerful and accurate fore-tellers.

  • One for sorrow (which can be dispelled if you spot a flying crow)
  • Flying one for success
  • Two for joy
  • Three for letter
  • Four for boy
  • Five for gift

I have no idea where this originated from but it is 100 % true especially the one for sorrow. Although I’m not sure if photos count 😉 Psst just in case you can’t find a flying crow, make a circle with your forefinger and thumb and cut (open it) with something (thrice!). 😀

Well I confessed mine 😛 What’s yours?

Written for the Friday Fictioneers – a story in 100 words or less. Thanks to Rochelle for hosting it and Douglas M Macllroy for the photo prompt. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt, click here.


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63 thoughts on “Do Photos Count?”

  1. Love the photo you shared from Douglas. Not too sure if that bird is happy… Haha, I’ve never actually heard of the bird superstition before. One time I jumped over a fence into a field full of yellow flowers (canola) and this one big black bird kept swooping at me. Probably the farmer sent him after me 😀

    Hope your weekend is going well. Maybe you have good food once again in the lead up to Diwali 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hahah although it is quite terrifying to have a bird attacking. Once I went to call my son from the playground and as I neared the gate he flapped his arms shouting for me to go away. But of course I wasnt going to listen to him – it was his homework time. I barged on and one furious mama crow pecked me on the head – her baby had fallen and was in my path! Phew quite a peck that was! Happy weekend to you too – err umm I am on a diet 😉


      1. LOL, you were going to drag your son to do homework and the bird stopped you 😀 I have a similar story. One time I was walking home in the 35’C summer heat. The sun was shining brightly and my eyes were half closed. All of a sudden a black bird was flying right at me, and knocked me right above the right eyebrow. There was a loud ‘thuck’ sound as it mad contact 😞 It was painful after that for a few days. Luckily it didn’t hit my eye 😃


  2. Wow! This post was really interesting 😁
    And the superstition, heard of this for the first time. Let me confess mine 😛 everytime I touch one earring, I touch the other. It’s almost a habit now. My mom told me in childhood that if you touch one earring, you’ll loose the other one 😂 And once, I lost one earring when I touched just one. So…😂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I have an old man in my building who is a sure sign of bad luck. Whenever I see him, something unexpected happens to me – my flight gets delayed, my dinner plans get canned …. so I try and avoid seeing him when something important is scheduled… I know it’s unfair to blame him but may be it is a warning that things won’t go as per plan ???


  4. In the UK when we see magpies we sing the nursery rhyme ‘One for sorrow.two for joy .three for a girl, four for a boy.five for silver six for gold and so on but I can never remember the whole rhyme. There is another version where one is for sorrow, two for mirth, three for a funeral, four for birth, five for heaven, six for Hell and seven for Devil his own self.
    My superstition. When I hear of a death of someone I know (family’.relatives or friends) I expect the news of two more deaths. I take a sigh of relief when I hear of three deaths. Morbid is n’t it?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Morbid but I can understand. I have heard of this one too but only in the context of death being at a particular time, month or season (not quite sure which) but it’s not always applicable :). Are magpies same as mynahs?


  5. I wasn’t aware of this one…mynahs do visit my kitchen window on and off but never counted …the mynah in the pic does have resemblance to one of the angry birds😁

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Memes existed long before Richard Dawkins book The Extended Phenotype (1982). One for sorrow is a meme introduced in 17th or 18 the century through this nursery rhyme.
    I like the way you used it for this prompt. Kudos.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I PERSONALLY loved this one, you reminded me of childhood horrors of seeing only one, then ill make sure i cancel the firs one by finding and looking around for two…wat memories…love the way you take up any subject and give it life….thank you always

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I enjoyed this because it was well written but also because it was close to home. My parents and grandparents were all very superstitious, with variations in what they believed, so I was bombarded with things to worry about/be optimistic about. I’ve tried really hard to avoid following in their footsteps, but haven’t totally succeeded. I’d heard that the mynah was seen as a sign of bad luck, but didn’t know how. The equivalent in the UK is the magpie, about which there is a very similar rhyme, “One For Sorrow”. Where I live the way of cancelling the spell is to tap our collars and say “Hello Mr Magpie, how’s Mrs Magpie?” This is obviously crazy, but I find myself doing it from time to time. Magpies live in the lane at the back of my house, so they’re difficult to avoid. I’m pleased to have discovered your blog (maybe I spotted a brace of magpies).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for such a wonderful comment and sharing your superstitions! Brace yourself but I didnt know they were called ‘brace’ 😀 Happy to meet to you too!


  9. You’re welcome. Now I think about it, it might not be that usual to call two magpies a ‘brace’. It’s used when someone catches (ok, kills) two of the same type of game bird, usually pheasants. Also, in football, when a player scores two goals in one match, that’s a brace, in the same way that three goals is a hat-trick. Apparently it comes from the old French way of describing a pair of arms.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I had to read this several times to get a sense of what might be going on. The line about scrolling down for the FF photo threw me off. I also wondered if the skeptical speaker would have asked why the cook ‘ritualistically’ put rice in and then took it out. If the skeptical speaker doesn’t bel ieve in superstition, then why would she/he think of the action as being a ritual?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your honest comment. I can appreciate your viewpoint but over here in India a lot of actions appear ritualistic but actually may just be superstitious personal tic or actually a ritual if you get what I mean. And the narrator is already annoyed with her cook for rejecting an available job offer for superstitious reasons. Yet we often don’t realise Zoe how often we do the very things we scoff at. Perhaps I wasn’t able to convey all that in 100 words or I should have used another word or example. Thanks for your feedback it has been helpful 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It’s interesting to see the two sides of the story – what I see and what you wrote. I’m a very literal person so sometimes I miss what is obvious:)

        Thanks for the clarifications. I understand much better now.

        Liked by 1 person

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