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Friday, August 13, 2010

Friday 8/13

Friday the 13th

Happy Friday the 13th!  I hope you’re not superstitious.  If you are, don’t start anything new and stay away from leaning ladders, questionable mirrors, indoor umbrellas, and black cats.  (Those bad luck charms don’t necessarily have anything to do with Friday the 13th, but you definitely don’t want to compound the effects!) 

So what the heck is all the hype surrounding Friday the 13th?  It’s really just a culmination of bad things that have happened on Fridays in history and the bad aura surrounding the number thirteen.  (By the way, the fear of Friday the 13th is officially called friggatriskaidekaphobia.)  Honestly, we’ve kind of ruined it for ourselves, if you think about it. 

Black Friday sometimes refers to stock market crashes.  Basically, everyone who had money those times . . . lost a lot of money those times.  Jesus was supposedly crucified on a Friday.  Shopping is nightmarish (albeit entertaining) the day after Thanksgiving.  Things like that. 

The number thirteen is the kicker, though.  For some reason, thirteen makes people uncomfortable.  Thirteen is deeply rooted in even the not-so-superstitious.  Many tall buildings in the U.S. rename the 13th floor.  One building that I used to work in actually had all of the mechanical services on the 13th floor instead of businesses.  Thirteen is often tied to the bad luck of Apollo 13.  There were thirteen people at the last supper.  You can see why it would be so spooky.

Mathematically speaking, 12 is kind of a complete number.  It works really well with circles.  Adding 1 to make it 13 throws a kink into everything.  There are 12 months, 12 zodiacs, 12 apostles, 12 tribes of Israel, 12 hours on the clock, etc.  12s are everywhere, but not 13s because it obstructs the wholeness of 12. 

You know what I think?  Any day can be a bad day.  I’m sure plenty of disasters and deaths have occurred on Tuesdays and Sundays.  (And Mondays, and Wednesdays, and Thursdays, and Saturdays.)  And think about it, if we all survive the impending apocalypse in 2012, 2013 is going to be a pretty good year!

Superstitious or not, have a good weekend.  Just know that you just saw the number 13 in this post 13 times!


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