Friday, 13 January 2012

# 13 Friday 13th

Why is it that so many of us get jumpy when it's Friday 13th and why do we presume that something bad will happen?

Apparently there is no evidence that Friday 13th is unlucky, at least not until the Victorians added it to their long list of phobias and superstitions. Friday and 13 separately however, have long been associated with bad luck so there's a fair bet that's where it all started.

The fear of Friday 13th is called friggatriskaidekaphobia (or other equally unpronounceable things depending on what source you read).  According to research an estimated 17-21 million people suffer from it in the USA. Some people are so paralyzed by fear they won't even get out of bed.  And they estimate between $800-$900 million is lost in business on Friday 13th.

Statistically, in certain countries, you are less likely to have an accident on Friday 13th because so many people choose to stay home to avoid accidents. According to UK research it is the opposite which suggests we're far less superstitious than other countries.

The other 'Friday 13th'. Much scarier
But why are some of us still so superstitious? It's irrational in a modern age where we know pretty much everything about everything.  And yet we still have a fear of this mysterious other world that we can't quite put out finger on.

Personally, despite being a very superstitious child, I think it's a load of rubbish. Nothing bad has ever happened to me on Friday 13th.

I'll let you know at the end of the day if I survived without mishap.

No comments:

Post a Comment