Friday, January 13, 2012

The Ever Elusive Friday the 13th

"The fear of Friday the 13th is called friggatriskaidekaphobia (Frigga being the name of the Norse goddess for whom "Friday" is named and triskaidekaphobia meaning fear of the number thirteen)." [taken directly from Wikipedia].

That is the first thing that pops up when Googling this mischievous day. Why are we so scared of this Friday? In theory, it isn't a Holiday, nor does it have any conclusive value to our evolution or everyday lives. Yet, this day is shrouded in mystery. We are all on the brink; sitting on the edges of our chairs, biting our nails, looking out the window or around the corner every fifteen seconds or so in paranoia... waiting for the ball to drop. Two words: Bad. Luck.

I remember even as a child hearing my parents laughing talking of this "holiday" and expecting "something bad to happen." It could be anything in anticipation. The car won't start in the morning making one very late for work. Spilt coffee on a brand new pair of slacks. Running into the coffee table and breaking one's toe. All of these are happen stances balmed on this poor little innocent day. My big question is Why?

What makes Friday the 13th so scary? Any of the above mentioned could happen on any random day of the week, but if an unpleasant situation befalls this one day, it is no doubt entirely the fault of the day. No other reason could possibly explain the horrible happenstance and the freak occurance. Hmmm...

To try to solve this riddle, I once again call upon the powers of the Great Google to teach me a little history lesson on this illustrious day.

Also taken from Wikipedia:

Consequently, several theories have been proposed about the origin of the Friday the 13th superstition.

One theory states that it is a modern amalgamation of two older superstitions: that thirteen is an unlucky number and that Friday is an unlucky day

In numerology, the number twelve is considered the number of completeness, as reflected in the twelve months of the year, twelve hours of the clock, twelve gods of Olympus, twelve tribes of Israel, twelve Apostles of Jesus, the 12 Descendants of Muhammad Imams, etc., whereas the number thirteen was considered irregular, transgressing this completeness. There is also a superstition, thought by some to derive from the Last Supper or a Norse myth, that having thirteen people seated at a table will result in the death of one of the diners.

Friday has been considered an unlucky day at least since the 14th century's The Canterbury Tales, and many other professions have regarded Friday as an unlucky day to undertake journeys or begin new projects. Black Friday has been associated with stock market crashes and other disasters since the 1800s. It has also been suggested that Friday has been considered an unlucky day because, according to Christian scripture and tradition, Jesus was crucified on a Friday.

One author, noting that references are all but nonexistent before 1907 but frequently seen thereafter, has argued that its popularity derives from the publication that year ofThomas W. Lawson's popular novel Friday, the Thirteenth, in which an unscrupulous broker takes advantage of the superstition to create a Wall Street panic on a Friday the 13th. Records of the superstition are rarely found before the 20th century, when it became extremely common.

The connection between the Friday the 13th superstition and the Knights Templar was popularized in the 2003 novel The Da Vinci Code. However, experts agree that this is a relatively recent correlation, and most likely a modern-day invention. Although according to many Freemasons, this date corresponds with the slaughtering of the Knights Templar by the Church.

So... after a quick read on Wiki, one can deduce that there is absolutely no conclusive evidence of Friday the 13th being the harbringer of Bad Luck, but simply a ton of random bad luck things taking place on this day in the past. There are many theories and further down the Wiki page there is a list of references as to bad occurrences that just happened to have taken place on this day, but still, no coherent proof. Not so much as even a Lore existing as to why this day is feared by most people around the globe that dates back to even close to ancient times. I mean, the Pagans had beliefs about everything, right? Nothing on this myth, however, can be found among the multi-god worshipers of the old world. But, alas, the fear exists, even if the fear is not horrendously horrifying, but rather a humble hamper of humorous heggles. (I Alliterated again.. squee.)

After doing a little research and a minute amount of thinking, I have come to the conclusion that Friday the 13th is nothing more than a "fun" holiday. I like to think of it as more a Nature's version of April 1st, if in fact there are cosmic forces in the works to enact mischief upon us all. Hey, the gods need to have some fun too, yeah? I'll bet they are all sitting upon their clouds drinking ambrosia and laughing their butts off at all us silly humans with our squabbles and misfortunes saying, "Ha! Gotcha! Happy Unlucky Day! Pitiful Humans!"

As for me, nothing has happened yet to cause misfortune. In fact, it was Crazy Hat Friday the 13th at work. Then I had a beer. All is right in the world of Lollie.

But, the night is still young. There may still be a game afoot!!

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