Unpredictable and vast, the sea presents challenge and danger to fishermen. The amount of control they have is limited. For centuries, fishermen have taken heed of some pretty curious superstitions perhaps to ensure their safe return to land. On a recent trip aboard a lobster boat, after muttering the word pig, I was gently reprimanded. “Don’t say the “P” word! You can spell it if you want “p-i-g”, call it “the curly-tailed fella” or “Dennis”.” The origin of this belief is unknown. Another wide held belief is that the presence of a banana on board will surely bring bad luck. This might have come from the fact that bananas as cargo often contained tarantulas, that you could slip on a peel, or even that due to hasty spoilage there was no time to fish during the journey. Whistling on board is also a big no-no. It would surely bring on a gale! If you need to speak of the number 13, be sure to call it something else such as 12 + 1. Norse legend says that evil was brought to the world by Loki, a mischievous and devious god who was an uninvited 13th guest at a dinner party of the deities. It also has a biblical origin having to do with the betrayer Judas being the 13th apostle. Evil will certainly follow you if you’re to bring a black suitcase or briefcase on deck. Some fishermen joke that it’s not superstition, that perhaps it’s kind of silly, but most of them aren’t taking any chances!