Friday, March 13, 2009

Friday the Thirteenth

Yes, folks, today is Friday the 13th. If you have the option (yes, Mike, I'm talking to you), you may want to just go back to bed; otherwise, it's time to get up, shudder, and face the day.

Do not open the door for this fellow, particularly if you are a triskaidekaphobe (that's someone with a fear of the number 13):

People have believed for hundreds of years that Friday is a generally unlucky day. Tradition had it that Jesus was crucified on a Friday (ever wonder why such a dreadful day is called Good Friday?), which was bad enough...but by the 1800s, people with nothing better to do had compiled a lengthy list of things considered unlucky to do on a Friday, including needleworking, writing letters (I'm doomed...), beginning a sea voyage, moving, getting married, and going to the doctor.

The status of the unfortunate number 13 as the premiere unlucky number has developed over many years, and may have originated in the Bible, where Judas Iscariot was said to be the 13th guest to sit at the table at the Last Supper. By the 1700s, it was generally believed that if 13 people sat down at a table together, one of them would die. Eventually the number 13 grew to be considered unlucky in any circumstance...in fact, many hotels and office buildings still do not have a designated 13th floor, going directly from 12 to 14.

I'm not sure when the two superstitions of unlucky Friday and unlucky 13 merged to make Friday the 13th a really unlucky day. Certainly the original Friday the 13th film didn't do the unfortunate day any favors, and the endless series of sequels, prequels, and remakes were lucky only for makeup artists and manufacturers of stage blood, prop machetes, and hockey masks.

But we're digressing again.

Yes, it's Friday the 13th. No, you can't avoid it.

Good luck.

Have as good a day as you can. Don't walk under ladders, let black cats cross your path, break mirrors, or anything else which will multiply the chance of bad luck.

More thoughts tomorrow for those of you who survive, bwah-hah-haaaaaaaa!!

Bilbo

8 comments:

Gilahi said...

Actually Good Friday used to be called Black Friday, but at some point the Christian Church decided that if Christ hadn't died then he couldn't atone for our sins and he didn't really die but rose again anyway and blahdeblahdeblahdeblah. Anyway, they renamed it from Black Friday to Good Friday.

And as a point of fact, if 13 people sit at a table to together, one of them will die. In fact, they all will. Eventually.

Wv: pyted - Past tense of the verb "to pyte".

KKTSews said...

This year my uncle will turn 90 and celebrate having been born on a Friday the 13th--a fact of which he's rather proud. Not always unlucky! He's a great guy and lucky indeed.

anOCgirl said...

a black cat crosses my path every day and i seem to be doing alright :)

Amanda said...

Its already the end of my Friday the 13th here and I had a great day. My mother AND grandmother are here visiting and we've spent the day catching up.

I did see a black cat in the bin this morning...poor kitty only had one eye. So, I left it alone to rummage through my rubbish.

fiona said...

You scared the shit out of me when I clicked on you and that pic showed up! Still having "the palpitations"
Great post though because I did not know that...

Zipcode said...

13 is my lucky number and my favorite number :-)

Mike said...

Crap, I FORGOT! I was consumed with my blogger problems. I was having a bad day. OH NO! It's true. I'm going back to bed.

Bilbo said...

Gilahi - good point about the table...

Katherine - he must be the exception that proves the rule!

Liz - you can have the black cats, thank you very much...

Amanda - I forgot about that International Date Line thingy...

Fiona - I have a mental image of you doing your palpitations...

Zipcode - I wanted to say something like "it figures" ... but I won't!

Mike - I tried to warn you...