Are you superstitious? Being superstitious is having an irrational belief usually founded on ignorance or fear and characterized by excessive reverence for omens, charms, or weird routines that we convince ourselves that we must do.
Do you genuinely get nervous after a black cat crosses the road in front of you or do you fearlessly walk under ladders with no regard for human life? Also, for the record, if you believe in luck, good or bad, then you inherently must believe in some type of superstition.
For me, superstitions are something that help to make you internally feel better and more peaceful. Growing up, I was a hockey goalie and pitcher in high school, two positions that are notorious for having odd fallacies that somehow make them more comfortable with what they are doing. I had to tap the goal posts in a certain rhythmic order or my hat had to be taken off and put back on in just the right way while I was on the mound (among other things). It was a routine that helped keep me focused on the task at hand and were, for the most part, productive actions. If I didn't do these things, I would be just a little more shaky on that next save or pitch.
And every player, regardless of sport or position, has a superstition in the certain way they like to dress before a game. Left-to-right or right-to-left, shin pads first or skates first, and everybody must lace their cleats or skates flawlessly lest we start all over. It matters for every single player. But we all know wearing number 13 will have real effect on your play, even though it's considered the unluckiest of numbers.
But there are also the less productive actions and superstitions that may drive people crazy and lead to obsessive-compulsive behavior. People can, and do, go overboard and become full OCD, which is often over-diagnosed.
It stems from a belief or notion that is based not on reason or knowledge, but is done simply to release the steam from your brain and ease your mind.
I am no longer superstitious, although I still throw salt with my right hand over my left shoulder when I spill it, but apparently neither is Tom Brady.
After being named the "Madden NFL 18" cover athlete on Friday, Brady made a video mocking the historically distressing "Madden Curse."
In 1998, Garrison Hearst of the San Francisco 49ers was the first player to appear solo on the cover of Madden 99 released in other parts of the world, not in America. Hearst went on to have the best season of his career, rushing for 1,570 yards. On his first carry in the divisional playoff round against the Atlanta Falcons, he broke his ankle severely and would miss the next two seasons and thus began the curse.
Barry Sanders was on the cover of Madden 2000. Shortly after that was announced, he announced his retirement from the Detroit Lions and NFL in the prime of his career. He was not injured, but he would never play again and just adds to the heartbreak of being a Lions fan.
"I quit because I didn't feel like the Lions had a chance to win," said Sanders. "It just killed my enjoyment of the game."
Eddie George (Madden 01), Daunte Culpepper (Madden 02), Marshall Faulk (Madden 03), Mike Vick (Madden 04), Donavan McNabb (Madden 06), Shaun Alexander (Madden 07), Vince Young (Madden 08), and Troy Palamalu (Madden 10) all were injured after being on the cover of the videogame.
Brady's own teammate and party fanatic Rob Gronkowski graced the cover of last year's game and went on to miss the final five weeks of the season including playoffs and their Super Bowl victory.
Now it is understandable to not believe in the "Madden Curse," but what Brady does in this video is semi-barbaric and absolutely cringe worthy.
Now if Brady starts a downward spiral we all know why.
Who was it that came up with all of these rules for bad luck anyways? When we say out loud the silly things that we all may do to ease our anxieties, it's almost enough for us to stop doing them...almost.