Who's afraid of Friday the 13th?



Browsing the net, I have found the following trivia about this day:


Friday is considered to be unlucky by many Christians. They believe that number 13 brings bad luck because there were 13 people at "The Last Supper" (the last meal Jesus had with his 12 Apostles). Judas, the betrayer, was the 13th to arrive and Jesus was consequently crucified on a Friday.

The superstition surrounding Friday 13 can also be linked to Norse mythology. According to legend, 12 gods were at a banquet at Valhalla when Loke, the demi god of mischief who was not invited, turned up, bringing the total number of guests to 13. He was responsible for the chaos that led to the death of one of the good gods – Balder – so all the gods grieved.


Triskaidekaphobia is the fear of the number 13 while the fear of Friday the 13th is called Paraskevidekatriaphobia.

Many airports skip the 13th gate. Aeroplanes don't have a 13th row.

Many buildings do not have a 13th floor. Numbers on elevators (=lifts) skip from 12 to 14. 90% of US skyscrapers do away with floor number 13, according to reports by the world's largest elevator manufacturers.

In Formula 1 racing, there is no car with the number 13. The number was removed after two drivers were killed in crashes, both driving cars numbered 13.

In Britain, Friday was the conventional day for public hangings. There were 13 steps leading up to the rope and 13 knots in the noose.

There are three Friday the 13ths to look forward to this year and they are 13 weeks apart.

Comments

lucia (pilar) said…
I have read your article. It's very interesting but I believe that all these things have an explication.
Judas is the 13 th person because he betraied to Jesus, for that he arrived late to last meal.
In the other hand, in Nors Mythology it’s normal for good gods to grieve because they didn’t invited to the demi god to go a banquet at Valhalla. Goods were grieved, It wasn’t a chance or coincidence, the number 13th was certainly the chance.

Nowdays, the others things (which) you explain, buildings without 13th flat, aeroplanes without 13th row, airports without 13th gate and elevators without 13th level, etc ...have an explication. Most people think the mencionated events of the past, which are described in the firsts paragraph, were true and were about the number 13th and these weren’t coincidences only.

I don’t believe in this costum. My son has gone the 13 th number in his handball singlet.

Bye, bye. See you tomorrow.

Lucía
Graham said…
Damn! I didn't folow the advice that I gave you (copy and paste your comments before sending) and now I've just lost your answer.

So here goes again.....

Lucía, aren't you superstitious in any way? Do you walk under ladders and open umbrellas indoors?

I'm not sure I understand your explanation but I'll try to correct what you wrote.


... but I believe that all these things have an EXPLANATION.
Judas is the 13th person because he BETRAYED JESUS; THAT'S WHY he arrived late FOR THE last meal.
ON THE OTHER HAND, in Norse Mythology it’s normal for good gods to grieve because they DIDN'T INVITE THE DEMI GOD to GO TO a banquet at Valhalla. Gods were grieved, It wasn’t a chance or coincidence, the number 13 was certainly the chance. ???????

...have an EXPLANATION. Most people think the MENTIONED events of the past, which are described in the first paragraph, were true and were about the number 13 and WEREN'T ONLY COINCIDENCES..

I don’t believe in this CUSTOM. My son has WORN NUMBER 13 ON his handball VEST.

See you tomorrow!
Mari Luz said…
I'm agree whit Lucia, your article is very interesting, but I don't believe in this superstition.
Every people have had many legends for explain the stranges events o coincidences.
In Spain the unlucky day is Tuesday and the popular knowlege say "Tuesday don't married and don't embark you", because Tuesday is the day of Mars, who is the mythologhical god of war.
Only is an other day an other superstition.....
Graham said…
Hi Mari Luz,

It's great to see you on here. I know you are not a fan of learning English with technology but hopefully you will change your mind because of this blog. :-)

I AGREE WITH Lucia, your article is very interesting, but I don't believe in this superstition.
EVERYONE HAS had many legends TO EXPLAIN the STRANGE EVENTS OR coincidences.
In Spain the unlucky day is Tuesday and A POPULAR SAYING GOES "On Tuesdays don't GET MARRIED and don't embark", because Tuesday is the day of Mars, who is the mythologhical god of war.
IT IS ONLY ANOTHER day AND ANOTHER superstition.....


I put the same question to you as I did Lucía: Aren't you superstitious at all? Don't you avoid walking under ladders just in case?


Have a nice weekend!
Anonymous said…
Hi Graham:

I can ´t believe there ´re superstitious people nowadays, when the human being is going to arrive to Marte in a short time. The superstition only is to person that believes in that. The people can think they want, but I think that a culture and science don ´t get on with with the superstition. The science is incompatible, I think, to religíons, mythology, legend and other stories. I think my classmates Lucía and Mariluz think so, but it was different I will respect them and other people. See you. José.
Graham said…
Hi José!

I think it's a shame that superstitions are considered old-fashioned now. I still AVOID walkING under LADDERS JUST IN CASE.

I can ´t believe THERE ARE superstitious people nowadays, when the human being is going to arrive on Mars IN THE NEAR FUTURE. SUPERSTITIONS ARE only IMPORTANT TO PEOPLE that BELIEVE in THEM. PEOPLE can THINK HOW THEY LIKE but I think that CULTURE and science CAN''T SIT ALONGSIDE* SUPERSTITIONS. I THINK SCIENCE is INCOMPATIBLE WITH religion, mythology, legend and other stories. I think my classmates Lucía and Mariluz think so, but IF THEY THOUGHT DIFFERENTLY, I WOULD respect them and ANYONE ELSE.

*"get on with" is used to describe relationships between people only.


I think superstitions are just A BIT OF HARMLESS FUN.
Anonymous said…
In France, we usually play to the Lottery, because it could be a good day to win. But this year, for me, it wasn't very positive...you know why teacher! (the jobs)

But I think that it's something to do business..it's like Valentin Day, the same!

Majda
Graham said…
Majda,

But that's just silly. THE MORE PEOPLE that play the lottery, THE LESS CHANCE you have of winning it.

And on the contrary, I've read that spending goes down on Friday 13th - it isn't a good day for business. Apparently, many people CHOOSE NOT TO fly on this day.


In France, we usually PLAY THE Lottery, because it could be a good day to win.

But I think that it's something TO DO WITH business..it's like Valentine's Day, the same!