Why "Merde!" means good luck
During the 19th century in France, well-to-do spectators arriving to a theatrical performance would generally be dropped off by horse and buggy where the horses, being horses, would naturally do their thing in front of the theater.
A large accumulation of merde on the street (that would inevitably get tracked into the playhouse) was synonymous with a larger audience, and was said to be a sign of the show's success. And because the superstition of wishing actors good luck before a play was thought to bring about misfortune, "merde!" eventually became the customary expression for "good luck!".
So the next time someone slings a "merde!" at you before you go for that job interview or important exam, there's no need to take offense. And remember not to thank them, unless you don't believe in thespian superstition.
07 September 2013
Previous urban "footwear" posts here and here.
At this rate, I'd expect to find another pair dangling above the street in approximately nine month's time.
I don't know about you, but as long as someone is going through the effort to display their warn out clodhoppers like this, it would be refreshing to come across something a little more elegant next time. I wouldn't expect a pair of Jimmy Choos - just something with a little more...lift.
Check back in June 2014 and see for yourself.