Black cats and broken mirrors


Do you think that it is bad luck to walk under a ladder or break a mirror? Do you think that black cats and the number 13 are unlucky? The three men in the picture don’t. Every Friday the 13th they walk under ladders, break mirrors, and open umbrellas indoors. They want to prove that they aren’t at all superstitious. They may be the only people in the world who aren’t. There are over one million superstitions, and most people believe at least one or two of them.

Many people are superstitious about numbers. They think that there are lucky numbers and unlucky numbers. The number 13 is often considered unlucky. In some parts of the world, buildings have no 13th floor and streets have no houses with the number 13. In Japan, 4 is considered unlucky because in Japanese the word “four” is pronounced the same as the word “death.” Japanese never give gifts of four knives, four napkins, or four of anything. What are the lucky numbers? Seven is a lucky number in many places, and 8 is considered lucky in Japan and China. In China, businesses often open on August 8(8-8), and many couples register to get married at eight past eight on August 8.

Superstitions about numbers are so widespread that some people──called numerologists——make a living by giving advice about numbers. In 1937, when the Toyoda family of Japan wanted to form a car company, they asked a numerologist if “Toyoda” would be a good name for the company. The numerologists said it would not be. He explained that “Toyoda” took ten strokes of the pen to write, and 10 was not a lucky number. “Toyota,” however, took eight strokes to write, and eight was a very lucky number. The numerologist recommended “Toyota” as a better name for the company. The family took his advice. As a result, millions of people drive “Toyotas” and not “Toyodas.”

In addition to superstitions about numbers, there are many other kinds of superstitions. There are superstitions about eating, sleeping, sneezing, and itching. There are superstitions about animals and holidays and horseshoes. There are even superstitions about superstitions. Those superstitions tell people how to reverse bad luck. For example, in many parts of the world spilling salt is bad luck. Throwing salt, however, is good luck. So, people who spill salt throw a little of the spilled salt over their left shoulder. Throwing the spilled salt reverses the bad luck. When the Japanese bump heads, they immediately bump heads again. According to a Japanese superstition, the first bump means their parents will die, but the second bump “erases” the first bump. To reverse bad luck in general, people turn around three times, turn their pockets inside out, or put their hats on backward. In the United States, baseball players sometimes wear their caps backwards when their team is losing. It looks silly, but the baseball players don’t mind if it helps them win the game.

Because there are so many superstitions, it is not surprising that some of them are contradictory. In Germany, it is good luck when the left eyes twitches and bad luck when the right eye twitches. In Malaysia, it is exactly the opposite: a twitching right eye means good luck, and a twitching left eye means bad luck. Accidentally putting on clothes inside out brings good luck in Pakistan but bad luck in Costa Rica. In Chile, unmarried people won’t take the last piece of food on the plate because it means they will never marry. In Thailand, unmarried people take the last piece because it means they will marry someone good-looking.

Some superstitions have been with us for so long that they have become customs. In many parts of the world it is polite to say “Health” or “God bless you” when someone sneezes. People used to think that the soul could escape from the body during a sneeze. They said “God bless you” to protect people from losing their souls. Today we no longer believe that people who sneeze are in danger of losing their souls, but we say “God bless you” anyway. We say it not because we are superstitious, but because we are polite.

Even people who say they aren’t superstitious would probably not do what the men in the picture do——intentionally walk under ladders and break mirrors. Almost everyone is at least a little superstitious. One woman says that when she got married, her aunt gave her white bath towels. “Never buy purple towels,” her aunt said. “If you use purple towels, your marriage will end.” Does the woman believe that superstition? “No, of course not,” she says. “It’s silly.” Does she use purple towels? “Well, no,” she answers. “Why take chances?”

–Adapted from Even More True Stories by Sandra Heyer–

English hometask for 24 september

Inside Out pre-intermediate -page 13, ex 5, page 14 ex 1, 2
page 13, ex 5

Complete the sentences with very or too.

a) My neighbours are too quiet. I never hear them.

b) I take the bus to work, it’s very crowded.

d) It’s very hot in the summer, but fortunately my office has air-conditioning.

e) Time goes too quickly, and i never finish my work.

f) I want to move into the city, but i can’t becouse apartments are very expensive.

page 14 ex 1, 2

1. Match each question with the most appropirate response.

a) What’s the weather like?

4.It’s hot and humid

b) What are the shops like?

3.They’re too expensive.

c)What are the people like?

2.They’re really friendly.

d) What’s the architecture like?

1.It’s a mixture of old and new.

2. Complete the table with the nouns in the box.

Cinema, nightlife, park, person, public transport, restaurant, traffic.

Singular form Plural form

Cinema Cinemas countable

Nightlife ……. uncountable

Park parks countable

Person persons countable

P.transport p.transports countable

Restaurant restaurants countable

Traffic traffic uncountableđ

English hometaesk

New Inside Out pre-intermediate- page 44, ex 1 ( from vocabulary)

1. Complete the sentences using these phrasal verbs from the list above.

Give up, hung up, put on, switch off, switch on, take off, throw away.

a) I always take off my shoes before i go into my house.

b) If i want to relax, i switch off all the lights and sit in silence.

c) When i want took my best, i put on a suit.

d) I could never give up coffee-it’s the only thing that keep me awake.

e) The first thing that i do when i get on to office is switch on my computer.

f) I never throw away plastic bags becouse they’re so useful.

g) I never do my ironing. I just hung up my clothes very carefully when they are wet.

Homeless to Harvard


A wonderful and motivational film

Homeless to Harvard

Thora Birch stars as Liz Murray, one of two daughters of an extremely dysfunctional Bronx family. Her father watches Jeopardy! and knows all the answers. Their bathtub doesn’t drain so she has to shower while standing on an overturned bucket, to stay out of the fetid water. As a young girl, Murray lives with her sister, their drug-addicted, schizophrenic mother and their father, also a drug addict who is intelligent, but has AIDS, lacks social skills, and is not conscientious. She is removed from the home and put into the care system as her father cannot take care of her. At 15 she moves in with her mother, sister and grandfather who sexually abused her mother and her aunt. After a run-in with her grandfather, she runs away with a girl from school who is being abused at home. After her mother Jean Murray dies of AIDS, which she got from sharing needles during her drug abuse, she gets a ‘slap in the face’ by her mother’s death and begins her work to finish high school, which she amazingly completed in two years, rather than the usual four. She becomes a star student and earns a scholarship to Harvard University through an essay contest sponsored by The New York Times.


The Adventure of Tom Sawyer
By Mark Twain

Read the passage. Then answer the questions.
At half-past nine that night, Tom and Sid were went to bed as usual. They said
their prayers, and Sid was soon asleep. Tom lay awake and waited in restless
impatience. When it seemed to him that it must be nearly daylight, he heard the
clock strike ten! This was despair. He would have tossed and fidgeted, as his
nerves demanded, but he was afraid he might wake Sid. So he lay still and stared
up into the dark. Everything was dismally still. By-and-by, out of the stillness
little, scarcely perceptible noises began to emphasize themselves. The ticking of
the clock began to bring itself into notice. Old beams began to crack
mysteriously. The stairs creaked faintly. Evidently spirits were abroad. A
measured, muffled snore issued from Aunt Poly’s chamber. And now the
tiresome chirping of a cricket that no human ingenuity could locate began. Next
the ghastly ticking of a death-watch in the wall at the bed’s head made Tom
shudder- it meant that somebody’s days were numbered. Then the howl of a faroff dog rose on the night air and was answered by a fainter howl from a remoter
distance. Tom was in an agony. At last he was satisfied that time has ceased and
eternity begun; he began to doze in spite of himself, the clock chimed eleven, but
he did not hear it, and then there came, mingling with his half formed dreams, a
most melancholy caterwauling. The raising of a neighbouring window disturbed
him. A cry of ‘Scat! You devil!’ and the crash of an empty bottle against the back
of his aunt’s wood-shed brought him wide awake and a single minute later he was
dressed and out of the window and creeping along the roof of the ‘ell’ on all
fours. He ‘meow’d’ with caution once or twice as he went; then jump to the roof of
the wood-shed and thence to the ground. Huckleberry Finn was there, with his
dead cat. The boys moved off and disappeared in the gloom. At the end of half an
hour they were wading through the tall grass of the graveyard.

  1. prayer
  2. restless
  3. impatience
  4. fidgeted
  5. faintly
  6. eternity
  7. neighbourUse the following words in the given sentences.1. My students are very restless they can’t sit still.
    2. My neighbours are crazy.
    3. I am an impatiences person. I can’t wait for long.
    4. Religion promises eternity for pure souls.
    5. Hes says prayer and goes to sleep like a child.
    6. She spoke very faintly and then fainted.
    7. I hate when someone fidgets.



1. beauty
2. death
3. mortal
4. eternal
5. rough winds
6. error
7. wander
9. heaven
10. dim

Use the following words in the given sentences.

1. Nobody has power in front of death
2. In winter rough winds shake every tiny in nature.
3. We all are mortal beings.
4. There was a technical error.
5. My grandmother is in heaven.
6. Her beauty is inexplicable.
7. Her is ——— very rough
8. It is interesting to wandered around.
9. I can’t stand dim rooms
10. Her name is written in his complexion lines.



1 impediment 
2 constant
3 mark
4 sickle
5 complexion
6 dim
7 feid
8 wander
9 breathe
10 so long

Use the following words in the given sentences. 

1 She has a very dark complexion.
2 I like to make my room dim.

3 Beauty feides away by time. 
4 She had lost her way home and that’s why she wandered 4 hours in the neighborhood. 
5 When someones dies he won’t to able to breathe.
So long he is the director, the school well flourish.
7 Memories feid away by time.
8 He has a birth mark on his face.
9 In Math we can have many constant.
10 In Soviet Union sickle was a well known sign.

Classwork on April 25, English vocabulary

10.So long:

Use the following words in the given sentenses.

1. She has a very dark and complextion.

2. I like to make my room dim .

3. Beauty feids  away by time.

4. She had lost her way home and thats why she wondered four houers in the neighborhood.

5. When someone dies, he will not to able to breathe.

6. So long   he is the director, the school well flourish.

7. Memorys feid away by time.

8. He has a bith mark on his face.

9. In math we can have many constant as.

10. In Soviet Union sickle was a  well known sign.