Not kissing someone – anyone – at midnight is a surefire way to guarantee yourself a year of loneliness, according to tradition. Kissing someone may even ward off evil spirits.
No significant other? Anyone will do. But I know who I’m kissing.
Auld Lang Syne
This old Scottish song, which translates to “Old Long Ago,” is sung at midnight to ensure that we stay rooted in the past and remember our histories.
Black Eyed Peas and other foods
This traditional New Year’s Day food is eaten for good luck, especially financial good luck. Lentils can also be substituted, as well as other beans. Other New Year’s traditional foods include eating 12 grapes at midnight – one at each gong of the clock for each month of good luck – and buttered bread – placed outside your door to indicate that no one in your home will go hungry in the year to come. Parsley wards off evil spirits and pork is said to help each person embrace the challenges of the year ahead. If you can eat at least one Chinese long noodle without breaking it on New Year’s Day, then you’re sure to have a long life. Cornbread, which is the color of gold, guarantees financial success, as do any round breads.
The color of the underwear you wear on New Year’s Eve will dictate the type of year you’re going to have. Yellow underwear means you’ll have a year full of prosperity (color of gold, you see). Red underwear means you’ll have a year full of love, romance, and passion. White guarantees peace, harmony, and happiness. Blue is for good health and tranquility. Green is for life, well-being, and nature. Pink is for luck in love.
New Year’s Day Activities
Whatever you do on New Year’s will set the tone for the year. If you engage in healthy activities, you’ll have a healthy year, and the opposite is also true.
Burn your Christmas Tree
The Dutch burn their Christmas trees and set off fireworks at midnight. This is to help get rid of the old and make room for the new.
What are you doing for New Years?