Friday the 13th

Jan 13, 2012 7:56 PM

Black cats, broken mirrors, and walking under ladders, are just a few superstitions some may have. But one of the worst, some say, is Friday the 13th.

For most of us, its just another day.. But for those with Friggatriskaidekaphobia, today is a Friday to be feared. Marriage & Family Therapist Nancy Calkins says, "In a world that gets more complex all the time, people want control. And so a superstition seems to make sense of a world they can't quite get a grasp on."

So where did Friday the 13th's bad luck originate? According to Norse Mythology, in 1500 B.C. twelve gods gathered for a dinner, and when Loki, the god of mischief, showed up, it made him the 13th guest, and one god ended up dying. Some Christians believe that Judas, who eventually betrays Christ, was the 13th guest at the last supper, and Christ was supposedly crucified on a Friday.

But more recently, like in the movie Friday the 13th, it's believed to just be a bad luck tradition. "People would say all these bad things happened to me on the 13th. It must be the 13th that's a bad number. And then it would carry on and become a tradition," says Calkins.

But the real question is do people still believe in these superstitions today? According to the National Geographic, roughly 17 to 21 million people in the U.S. somehow fear the day. Many will even go as far as avoiding business or flying on the day. But its not just Friday the 13th. There are other '13' superstitions not associated with Friday, many buildings do not have a 13th floor and most airports skip gate number 13 altogether.

North state residents are pretty split in what they believe to about Friday the 13th. Chico resident Samantha Slack says, "I didn't really take any special considerations into the day.. I'm not really superstitious." "I still don't walk under a ladder. I still have the tendency if I spill salt, I throw it over my shoulder," Teresa Jones says. Kyle Reise says, "I look out a little bit, but nothing really big."

Many say its all about mind over matter, so instead of focusing on the bad, Calkins says, think of all the good things that happen to you instead.

This year, 2012 will see two more Friday the 13ths, one in April, another in July. The most possible in one calendar year.


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