Friday the 13th - Do You Have "Paraskavedekatriaphobia"?

  • June 13, 2008
  • Jenna Maxwell
Friday the 13th - feeling lucky today?  Did you know that today is the only Friday of the whole year that the thirteenth falls on.  If you're superstitious then you're probably on full-alert today!  Here is a little "fyi" for you; the fear of Friday the 13th is called "paraskavedekatriaphobia", a specialized form of triskaidekaphobia, which is a fear of the number thirteen. The dictionary defines the word superstition as, "an irrational fear of what is unknown or mysterious".  Although it may be defined as irrational, I'm sure many people would disagree.  Some sources say that Friday the 13th may be the most widespread superstition in the United States.  Many people avoid travel, avoid signing contracts, some won't go to work or eat in restaurants and some people won't even get out of bed.  And it's not just people that are superstitious, the business world is  as well.  Many tall buildings don't have a 13th floor and some airlines don't have a row 13, they skip straight from 12 to 14.   Many Christians have long believed that Friday was unlucky because it was the day of the week when Jesus was crusified and the number 13 was believed to bring bad luck because there were 13 people at The Last Supper with the 13th guest being Judas, the traitor. Besides the more popular superstitions you hear everyday such as; walking under a ladder, breaking a mirror and opening an umbrella indoors - here are some bad luck superstitions that I had never heard of:
  • a bat flying into your house
  • three butterflies together
  • hearing a rooster crow at night
  • spilling salt
  • crossing knives at a table
  • sitting on a table without one foot touching the ground
  • breaking a glass while proposing a toast
  • seeing an owl during daylight hours
I think everyone has seen the character "Jason" from the slasher films Friday the 13th out trick-or-treating on Halloween night.  Every year I see at least one, if not more Jason's running around in our neighborhood wearing the trademark white hockey mask.  This popular horror film franchise has been around since the original movie came out in May 1980.  Since then 11 sequels have been released with the latest being "Jason vs Freddy" in 2003.  However, there's great news if you're a Friday the 13th movie fan!  A remake of the original Friday the 13th film is scheduled for release Friday, February 13, 2009.