What's interesting about this one is that the sky was flat as the dickens in the original shot. All the detail came out when I was developing the image in Lightroom. (Incidentally? I heart Lightroom.)
So I pride myself on being a materialist. An atheist. It's taken me a long time and a lot of effort to reach this position. To consciously and knowledgeably reject the fundamental beliefs of the vast majority of mankind ain't easy for a lot of us. But at the end of the day, there is no place where religion contributes to any real understanding of life and the universe. Religion and science are not complimentary means of understanding the world; they are inherently opposed, and religion just don't work. It do not function; it have no technology. I reject any belief in mythology.
But let's be serious. I am a heathen wretch. Despite my intellectual beliefs, I still regard myself as being battered about by unseen forces, and feel my trespasses against the spirit world can cause calamity.
Let me introduce you to some of my stupid, stupid superstitions.
Any show of pride, declaration of intent, or stated desire must be accompanied by knocking on wood in order to show the spirit world that I remain humble within.
If no wood is available, I knock on my noggin, the implication being that I regard myself as a blockhead.
It's bad luck to cuss like a space guy.
"By Saturn's icy moons," or "Great sweltering nebulae!" for instance. I once spent a morning cussing like a space guy and the afternoon brought me terrible fortune. One of the worst days I've ever had. So I've never used any space guy oaths since then, for which my friends and family must be grateful.
Things happen in threes; if two similar events occur, keep your eyes peeled for the third.
But it's true, he bleated plaintively.
And while we're at it, similar events occur in clusters.
As my old pal Angel used to say, shit comes in piles. And so do presents.
Always give the other person the largest share.
Again, if the spirits had any idea what a megalomaniacal narcissist I am, I'd be in real trouble. Always stay humble and you might not die screaming. This one presents me with a certain amount of frustration, given that the missus believes in always taking her bite out of the middle.
Always be polite to strangers; they may be more than they appear.
I always suspect random street crazies of possessing ineffable wisdom and mystical powers. And courtesy to others is a way of demonstrating courtesy to the world at large. Actually, I try and treat everything and everyone with respect when I'm not running amok.
If you put your underwear on inside-out it brings bad luck. In order to correct this situation, you must spit in your underwear before reversing it.
I'm fairly sure this is an authentic piece of folklore -- I believe it's African American but I'm not certain. I have no idea why this notion stuck with me but it did. I've never actually had to launch a loogie but every so often I almost put my underwear on inside-out and catch myself getting a little edgy over the prospect of wearing spat-in boxers.
I may not believe in God, but as the Cowardly Lion once said, "I do believe in spooks."