Keepin’ Away Them Haints

Well the painters are finishing up today, it’s going to feel great to have my lawn back after nearly two weeks of dancing around drop cloths and ladders. Among the finishing touches are the front and back porch ceilings. The color picker for the painting company we’re using asked if, instead of the grey-green we’re using for the main body of the house, if we wouldn’t prefer a nice “haint” blue for the porch ceilings. What the heck is a “haint”? Turns out the blue is a Southern thing, a traditional hex supposed to keep evils spirits (“haunts”) out of your house. Explanations vary as to where the superstition came from, or exactly what light blue does to scare the spooks away, but the way I see it I can use all the help I can get. All in one fell swoop I cut my bad luck and build my Southern creds. There’s no down side that I can see.

12 thoughts on “Keepin’ Away Them Haints”

  1. I don’t know how “Southern” it is. If you checked New England porches in the 50s when I grew up and vacationed with my grandparents you wouldn’t find many variations from sky blue.

    The thing about painting ceilings the color of the sky is that spiders don’t recognize a cozy corner in which to spin a web. So the ceilings and porches stay tidier.

    1. Hey Rainey!

      Interesting. I’ve heard the spider explanation as well, also one about mosquitos and bees mistaking it for blue sky. I’ll keep my eyes peeled!

      – Joe

  2. I think the light blue color is supposed to evoke the sky or heavens and confuse the spirits that way.

    1. More very interesting info! I read somewhere another theory as well, i.e. that it’s supposed to look like clean water, which evil spirits can’t pass over. But then would they be fooled by water on the ceiling? Makes no sense.

      Thanks for the comment!

      – Joe

  3. Oooooh, so THAT’S why that color is so popular on porches! I’ve seen that around where I live (sorta-Mid-Coastal Virginia, lots of Revo/Civil war grounds round here (can’t chuck a piece of wood without hittin’ one of ém!)). I’ve seen it and always liked it. Now I know there’s a reason for it! Great future reason/excuse/leverage!!

    Many thanks for this knowledge!/leverage!

    1. Haha…amen, Squrille! If I’m gonna pretend to be a Southerner I’d better know my local superstitions! Cheerio,

      – Joe

  4. Ain’t no haint gonna run you off! (Jumpin’ Gene Simmons – Haunted House)

    1. At first I thought that was an obscure reference to KISS Meets the Phantom of the Park, Suzanne! I had no idea who Jumpin’ Gene was until this morning. I’m surprised I never heard it on the old Dr. Demento show when I was a kid. Great stuff.


      – Joe

      1. Wow… Dr. Demento! I haven’t heard that since I was child. I remember listening to it in the car with my dad. I think the most vivid memories from it are the Fish Heads song and the horse race with Beetle Bomb. Thanks for bringing those memories back Joe!

  5. Except the painters now have successfully off loaded their excess paint to you! Hope they gave you a discount for it.

  6. My stepmother has their porch ceiling blue here in Texas. I don’t remember what color it was before they moved in. I guess I never paid any attention when my grandparents lived there. She said something about the blue making the birds and wasps think it was the sky so they wouldn’t build nests there.

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