Happy Friday the 13th!
I really don’t get superstition. I mean, what about Friday the 13th is supposed to be unlucky? I don’t feel any different today than I did yesterday or the day before. Of course, I might feel differently if there was a freaky guy in a hockey mask lurking behind me with a machete. “Jason… Jason… Jason… Jason… Kill… Kill… Kill… Kill…”
Fun fact for you; traditionally, there are 13 witches in a coven, or so I’m told. Most of the witches that I presently know don’t have set covens, but more like loose groups with drifting members. By the way, the only witches I know are Wiccans and they don’t even have green skin and hooked noses with giant warts on the tips. How boring is that?
Another (I think) interesting fact; there are many religions around the world that have 1 prophet or messiah and 12 followers. Add the two numbers together and what do you get? You guessed it: 13. I have no idea if this is even remotely relevant to anything, but I just thought I’d bring it up.
The end of the Mayan calendar’s 13th Baktun is widely feared as a bad omen. It seems that we can’t get away from talk about this lately… you know, the end of the 13th Baktun (December 21, 2012) being the beginning of the end and all that jazz. There are a lot of people currently making a hell of a lot of money off of this particular fear, so clearly it’s not bad luck for everyone.
Did you know that it’s apparently in bad taste to have 13 guests at one table? I think that has something to do with ‘The Last Supper’ but I’m not certain if that’s something I’ve heard/read or just some conclusion my brain has jumped to on it’s own.
Oh, and there are 13 twists in a traditional hangman’s noose. I’m pretty sure that falls into the ‘unlucky’ column.
Didn’t King Philip the V or IV (of France) command the arrest of the Knights Templar on Friday the 13th sometime in the 1300’s? I imagine the Templar didn’t find that to be very good fortune.
Now flip the whole thing around, and take note of how many famous sportsmen have worn the number 13; names of note would include Park Ji-Sung, Dan Marino, Alex Rodriguez, Wilt Chamberlain and I think even Shaquille O’Neal wore it for awhile back in the day. I think the number’s been pretty ‘lucky’ for most of them, or at least not unlucky.
Of course, 13 is also the age in which our children turn (officially) into teenagers, so maybe that’s what makes it feel so unlucky for some.
Personally, I like the number 13. I don’t think of it as lucky, I just like 7 and 3, numbers ending in 7 and 3 and/or numbers divisible by 7 and/or 3. I don’t know why, I just do.
While most of us are used to seeing buildings without a 13th floor (which is ridiculous since just skipping a number in labelling doesn’t actually change the number of the floor, but whatever), in areas with a strong Chinese community – such as Vancouver – you’ll also find the 4th floor (and subsequently 14th, 24th and so on) missing from many buildings.
When I was living inVancouver, I felt the overwhelming need to look that up, since it was making me insanely curious. Interesting, no?
Personally, I’m not superstitious. I don’t even believe in luck. Oh sure, I’ll say off-the-cuff things like, “oh you lucky bastard!”, and when I play Monopoly with my eldest I say, “c’mon lady luck, momma needs a new pair of shoes” every time I roll the dice because it makes her giggle (and I love to hear her giggle) but these are just figures of speech. I don’t cross the road when I see a black cat coming my way; in fact, I’ve owned 2 black cats in years gone by; and I’ve never owned a rabbits foot. Sure, I might feel a little differently about black cats it I had a big ass panther breathing down my neck, but generally speaking the color of a kitty doesn’t much bother me so long as they actually have fur; those furless cats give me the willies. Oh, and just how lucky could that rabbit’s foot actually be? It wasn’t so lucky for the poor little bunny that used to hop around on it, right?
I’ve heard it said that it’s good luck to have a bird shit on you… how does that one even make sense? I can’t even imagine ever finding it good luck to be shat on by anything. Have you ever heard that when a dog howls, it means death is near? There are dogs howling in my neighbourhood all day every day! Then again, death is all around us all the time, so who knows; maybe that one’s not so far off.
I have aunts that are ridiculous about this stuff, but I think they just make a lot of it up on the spot. Like if you drop a fork, they’ll say, “Oh! You’re going to be visited by a woman soon!” or if you drop a dishcloth they say, “Oh no, bad luck is coming your way.” They throw salt over their shoulders when they spill it, and go out of their way to avoid walking under ladders. If you get a wart, they buy it from you for a penny – swearing this will make it go away – and if you find a penny, they insist you put it in your shoe for the rest of the day for good luck. When I was a kid, one of my aunts even told me that smelling dandelions would make you wet the bed. Really?
I will never pass on a chain letter, I don’t avoid cracks in the sidewalk, if I break a mirror, I pick up the pieces and move on with my day unperturbed, and I don’t feel very lucky when I realize I’ve been wearing an article of my clothing inside out. I also believe that we should beware of self-fulfilling prophecies… sometimes believing too much in something is a bad thing.
No matter the date, I hope you have a fantastic day!