You can hear the song from miles away. The song is enchanting in a mild way. Even the plants sing this haunting tune all day. This gives you fair warning to be ready to dance to a different tune. You are leaving your country and entering theirs.
This relic, while of little value against the living, is a formidable tool against the beasts from beyond.
The D’athri took to space in such a way to make Terrans look "gun shy". They can be found in small numbers in and around every space port in Known Space.
In ancient China, women bind their feet for cosmetic reasons, resulting in them not able to walk without help and walking in a shuffling gait.
Possibly this can be modified such that people do it for less stupid reasons.
Disclaimer: This is NOT a racist remark since I'm Chinese myself and hence entitled to freely judge Chinese customs. NOT sexist either since I'm female as well.