Friday, August 31, 2007

Rabbit Rabbit

Ok, it is only August 31 but I need to plan my strategy ahead of time. And, chances are good this post will not be read until September 1.

As I considered the transition from August to September, summer to fall, work to a 3 day weekend, my curiosity was piqued this week. Why did the tradition of rabbit rabbit start?

For rabbit rabbit rookies, good luck will be yours if you say "rabbit rabbit" to others on the first day of the month. For rabbit rabbit veterans, missing the opportunity to say it first can lead to detailed plots of revenge. At least, that is how I have always understood the tradition. My father used this greeting and consistently remembered to say it each month to my mother's chagrin. That is my family's experience with rabbit rabbit, yet anything which portends to bring good luck has to have some history behind it. So, let's conduct a bit of research and discover what's up with the rabbit. (My apologies, Bugs).

As any good researcher would do, I immediately googled "rabbit rabbit." According to Wikpedia, rabbit rabbit is a common superstition in English speaking countries. It can be traced back to at least 1420 England and perhaps to the 1200's. There are tons of variations. Some traditions say rabbit 2 times, some say it 3 times. Others believe it must be said as your first words of the day. Another superstition states the listener then has bad luck for the month. But like the good fairies in Sleeping Beauty there is a way to reverse it. Simply utter "tibbar, tibbar" before going to bed on the first day of the month. Visit wikpedia.org/wiki/rabbit_rabbit for more details.

When you read this blog on September 1, please know that my rabbit rabbit to you is extended with hopes of good luck for both of us. I like the idea of rabbit rabbit representing "jumping into the future and moving ahead with life and happiness." If you are a rabbit rabbit lover, please add your comments. Maybe you have some interesting variations you have used or special memories of this centuries old tradition.

In the meantime, I have to remember to be quiet in the morning until I can call my mother and say "Rabbit Rabbit" before she has the chance to remember it is September 1.

2 comments:

Frank said...

I understand from my ancestry searches that my French forefathers were derisively called "Frogs" by the English because when they said "Rabbit Rabbit" it sounded like "Ribbit Ribbit". Of course that could just be a really bad joke. Your research into "Rabbit Rabbit" is really intresting. I have always wondered where it started.

Anna said...

Ribbit ribbit is very close to tibbar tibbar. Leave it to the French to get it nearly backwards! If you start a new trend, ribbit ribbit can mean "I wish you a full stomach the entire month." Well, that certainly makes no sense!