Didn't find your answer?

One for sorrow, two for joy, three for a girl and four for a boy. Five for silver, six for gold and seven for a secret never to be told.

So I'm driving along and at 8:15 I see a solitary magpie (I'm in for a bad day, I think), then I drive a bit further on and at 8:30 I see a pair of magpies.

Now my question is this.  Do the two magpies at 8:30 cancel out the lone magpie at 8:15? such that I should venture my entire life savings on the Euromillions this evening?  Or do they, in fact, cumulate such that Mrs Attazder and I should start make preparations for the arrival of a female infant?

If the magpies accumulute, how long is the accumulation period.  If I see another three on the way home, am I going to be winner at the 2016 Olympics?  What if I see more tomorrow?

Replies (12)

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By gerrysims
30th Nov 2012 11:00


Why is it when you think you've cleared your desk for the weekend and can have a carefree couple of days another problem comes along that you didn't know existed.

I see loads from my office window and have always stopped counting at two unless there is a flock (?). Now I'm worried I've been doing it wrong.

My neighbour shoots them out of the trees as they eat the cherries but that's another story.

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By SteveOH
30th Nov 2012 11:02

It depends on whether or not they have submitted a P46

If the magpies have all filed a P46 and ticked box A, then they are cumulative and you should start decorating the nursery. If not, then they are all on a month 1 basis and I want a cut of your Euromillions winnings.

As for the length of the accumulation period, I have no knowledge of this. Try HMRC; if you can get through.

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By frustratedwithhmrc
30th Nov 2012 11:03

If the magpies accumulate, how long is the accumulation period.

They only accumulate if you salute them.

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By Paul Scholes
30th Nov 2012 11:27

You only count UK birds

One of the problems is all these foreign Magpies coming over here and messing up the numbers of true Brits.  At the moment though most foreigners are solitary males who are sussing it out before sending for the family and so I'd say you are in for some Joy.

I'm still undecided, haven't seen one for a few days but, as I tap, there are 3 parakeets nibbling at me nuts and scaring the pigeons.....more bloody foreigners!

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By Steve Holloway
30th Nov 2012 14:03

Haurumph ...

.. bloody magpies, they come over here, steal our women and eat our fat balls ... I am definetly voting UKIP next time.

By the way, am I the only person who thinks it's amusing to wander around Pet City until approached by a helpful member of staff and then say 'I'm looking for your fat balls' ?

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By George Attazder
30th Nov 2012 14:10

I was going to buy...

... the dryer balls they have in Morrissons for my brother-in-law.  It's what every sweaty man needs!  But £7.99 seemed a bit steep.

With non-UK indigenous magpies eating Steve's fat balls and parakeets nibbling Paul's nuts, these birds certainly seem to be a menace.

I do realise now though that there was more to my question than I'd originally thought.

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David Winch
By David Winch
30th Nov 2012 14:14

There must be a definite answer . . .
. . . in black and white!

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By ShirleyM
30th Nov 2012 14:18

lol ... this thread has been brilliant :)

Sadly, I don't have any fat balls to compare with yours!

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By Steve Holloway
30th Nov 2012 14:40

... well if you want some ..

then the dryer ones sound like the way to go. The birds are sure to love them too.

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By pembo
30th Nov 2012 14:49

FRS 102

Looking through the draft of FRS 102 "accounting for Magpies in a low inflationery environment" it appears to require separate recognition of each incidence thus accumulation would not normally present a true and fair view. It does however say that in exceptional circumstances accumulation can be considered as a T&F overide however if adopted  the presumptive assertion is that the accumulation period does not exceed the lower of 24 hours or your car journey.The standard is quite clear  that each car journey is a separately identifiable period thus return journeys would not count other than as a self contained accumulation period.

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By User deleted
30th Nov 2012 18:33

Definitive answer or solution

If you salute them every time you see them then none of them count.

But despite that I work on the basis that if I'm driving along and see one then provided I see another within the next 10 seconds it counts as 2 and not double the bad luck! If I count to 15 then I assume I was counting too quickly :)

I keep seeing a picture with one magpie in on the daily wail website - it bothers me every time!!

What's the story for 8 and above? At one of our dog walking sites there are a good dozen that you can see at one go - I never seem to have been overcome with good fortune or several children / admirers afterwards so I'm guessing there is some rhyme I'm missing?


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By User deleted
30th Nov 2012 19:10

According to the TV program ..

... eights a wish and nines a kiss, ten is a bird you must not miss ...

... but I don't think they mean with a 12 bore!

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