Friday the Thirteenth

Black catSo it’s Friday the 13th. Da da daaaaah! Are you watching your step today? Avoiding travel? Staying in bed? If so you may be suffering from triskaidekaphobia – literally a phobia of Friday the 13th. According to the mighty ‘Wikki-Wah’ 17 – 21 million people in the United States suffer from triska… triksy … trippy….oooh whatever, and there is an estimated loss of $800 to $900 million in business revenue as a result. You may also be interested to know that although there are various independent references to both Friday and the number 13 being unlucky, this superstition only really came to the fore in the late 19th century. Aren’t we humans weird? It’s a date. On a calendar. Just numbers in the ongoing recording of our history.

Yes, well I can tell myself this logic, and yet a little primeval voice in my head tells me to avoid making any significant decisions on this day and certainly never to get on a plane. It’s not an altogether silly voice either – the last time I mocked superstition (in this instance by walking under a ladder and laughing at friends as they skirted around) I went and shrunk the (pigging) curtains in my college digs by taking them to the launderette. My friends and I spent the rest of the term with suitcases lined up around the windows in order to stop peeping toms looking in. Strangely enough, there were always cigarette butts outside our window so I think our clever scheme failed. I eventually had to own up to the ‘Big Cheese’ and fork out for replacement window drapes.

No, if you’re a triksy-diddly-phobic you won’t find me laughing at you. Once today is over however you can breathe a big sigh of relief. The next instance of this conjuction of unlucky day plus date doesn’t occur until August next year. That’s a whole 9 months in which to relax…except avoid those ladders… and those black cats…and that magpie ….and mind that salt…and that mirror…

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