www.whyville.net Jan 15, 2012 Weekly Issue

Guest Writer

Friday the 13th

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I didn't even realize it was Friday the 13th until I had written the date on my homework. I whispered to the person next to me, and she whispered to the person next to her, and soon enough the whole class was talking about Friday the 13th and how spooky it was. That got me thinking: where did the idea that Friday the 13th was unlucky come from? I decided to dig a little deeper and I discovered some interesting facts.

Although there is no written evidence before the 19th century of Friday the 13th being unlucky, there are a couple theories on why it is considered unlucky.

Theory #1 - Thirteen is thought to be an unlucky number because it is considered irregular, and because having thirteen people seated at a table at one time will result in the death of one (this thought is derived from Norse mythology and The Last Supper).

Theory #2 - Friday is considered an unlucky day because, according to Christian scripture, Jesus was crucified on a Friday, and Friday was always thought to be a terrible day for new journeys or projects.

When theory #1 and theory #2 are combined, they make the unluckiest day of the year.

I also found out that there is actually a phobia of Friday the 13th, friggatriskaidekaphobia. The phobia gets it's amazingly confusing name from the Norse god, Frigga, for whom Friday is named after, and triskaidekaphobia, the fear of the number thirteen.

Apparently an estimated 17 to 21 million people in the United States are affected by this day. Some are too terrified to complete their normal routines, drive their cars, or even get out of bed. This fear helps the safety in businesses because either the employees do not go to work, or they are extremely careful when working.

In 2012, two more months will have a Friday the 13th: April and July.

I decided to interview some Whyvillians on their thoughts of Friday the 13th.

Devildayz: Were you aware that today was Friday the 13th?

nicenfun: Yep, I was actually! I think it's only because it's my old friend's birthday though.
maddy1033: I wasn't aware it was Friday the 13th until my friends started freaking out texting me. Haha.
BounciBug: Yes, I was. My friends all made a big deal about it because her birthday was on a Friday the 13th last year.
halfbrit3: Yes, I have been aware all day.

Devildayz: Did you continue with your regular routine?

nicenfun: Yep, I went about today as if it were any other day.
maddy1033: Yes, but I avoided running into our black cat, Micha, and also I was very careful walking down the stairs this morning. Haha.
BounciBug: Yes, for the most part. Except I found I was more spaced out and sleepy, so I kept missing bits of what my teachers said.
halfbrit3: It did not change my routine at all.

Devildayz: Do you have a fear of Friday the 13th? If not, do you have a fear of any other day/number?

nicenfun: Nah, I'm not superstitious or anything. To me, it's just a day. Numbers are just numbers and days are just days. Nothing to be freaked about. But hey, that's just me.
maddy1033: I do have a fear of Friday the 13th, only for past experiences. When I was 10, I fell down the stairs at school, and lost my homework in a puddle, all on Friday the 13th.
BounciBug: I don't fear Friday the 13th. I only dislike May 26th because of personal reasons.
halfbrit3: I have no superstitions, but for some reason I get nervous when I see the number 666. I am also nervous for December 21st, when the world is supposed to end, but I'm not too worried about that one.

Thank you to all of the people who volunteered to be interviewed, and I hope everyone who read this article learned something new about Friday the 13th! I can't believe I'm saying this, but I'm excited for Friday, April 13th. Until then, have a good 2012!

- Devildayz

Author's Note: Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Friday_the_13th


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