Jan 13, 2006



(Toledo, OH) As many of you are aware (at least those who have not been hibernating), today is Friday the 13th. The above term references the fear of this day, and based upon the conversations I have had, more than a few people still exhibit at least a passing ackowledgement that the number is one they unconsciously avoid.

Triskaidekaphobia is fear of the number 13 itself. As much as a billion dollars per year is lost in productivity from people who avoid work or going out on Friday the 13th.

Some attribute the fear of the number 13 to the Last Supper, in which Christ and his 12 followers spent their last evening together. Other sources for the origin of paraskavedekatriaphobia include a Norse legend of twelve feasting gods whose fete was interrupted by Loki; the interloper tricked Hod, the blind god of darkness, to throw a branch of mistletoe at the god of joy Balder, killing him instantly.

In much of the Spanish-speaking world, it is Tuesday the 13th that is supposed to bring bad luck.

As for me - I received a call today that the Washington Post will be running some of my photos from last Sunday's auto worker protest in Detroit. Perhaps I will mark the day as a harbinger of good luck in the future.

Addendum: After belatedly picking up the Peach section, I noticed that Ryan Smith of the Blade did a much lengthier analysis of Paraskavedekatriaphobia that makes for good reading.


willow said...

Well this should amount to one hell of a day!

Stefan Schmidt said...

I am no historian but I believe the number originates when Phillip the Fair ordered the arrests of all the Knights Templar on Friday 13, October 1307.

Lisa Renee said...

That shows you how out of it I am today. I didn't realize it was Friday the 13th.


Marie said...

Congratulations!!! The Washington Post!!! You go...

And...thanks for the coverage of the Protest!!!

Celebrate your success...it is well deserved!!!

Lisa Renee said...

WaPo news is awesome


McCaskey said...

Okay, this comment has nothing to do with your Friday the 13th post...but I really hope you do something with this. It's from the Bob Frantz blog:

"Redfern joined Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur, who was apparently taking a break from pinning “freedom fighter” medals on Al Quaeda members"

This is outrageous. Hope you comment.

McCaskey said...

HM: I just noticed all the other, certainly more important, problems, you're dealing with. And best of luck with those. When you find the time I hope you address in depth the Bob Frantz comment on a congresswoman who has served NW Ohio with distinction for so many years. Even for WSPD types, this personal slanderous attack is beyond the pale. Thanks.

Stephanie said...

I've never had much of a fear for Friday the 13th. Actually, I got married on Friday the 13th and am glad of it.

Yet...after today, I just might change my assessment.

Note to parent's everywhere: Not potty trained & indoor exhibitionist make for a VERY POOR combination!

Hooda Thunkit said...


I once thought that I suffered from Paraskavedekatriaphobia, before I realized that most of the bad things in my life happened on Friday, any Fiday.

So, I am often anxious on Fridays, breathing a sigh of relief at the end of most of them, as they were usually uneventful (at least, recently).