OK, as I’m writing this, tomorrow will be Friday the 13th of April. By the time you read it, that’ll be today.
I Don’t Believe In It
I normally mock the whole Friday 13th superstition, mainly because there’s not much proof of it existing before the nineteenth century (and I’m pretty sure if it was really unlucky, people would have noticed before then). It all has an edge of obsessive-compulsive disorder that I don’t feel any need to engage in. And the Friday The 13th films haven’t helped it either.
To be a snob about it, I think it was the 4nim4l whose superstitious ill fortune rubbed off on us all that day, but the last time a Friday the 13th happened we had one of the most bewilderingly shitty days.
But It Believes In Me
Let’s see, the most memorable part I think was when Mini-MI and the 4nim4l were accosted by an ownerless dog in the town library. I was upstairs in the stacks, looking for books about robots and artificial intelligence, when I heard the 4nim4l shouting “Get down!”, and I thought he was talking to Mini-MI. But no, there was a very keen dog trying to get to Mini-MI’s face, and snapping its teeth at the 4nim4l for getting in the way.
Library assistants stood agape like sodding zombies while I trundled down the stairs, took in the scene, dropped some very heavy books that it hadn’t occurred to me to put down first, and bellowed, “WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON DOWN HERE?” in the voice of impending doom for all within earshot. I felt like a bloody P.E. teacher.
So I whipped the buggy round and went coursing around the shelves, while the 4nim4l shouted for a bit of fucking help. Finally one of the library staff came out from their fortress of deskness and helped herd and nudge the dog doorwards until it ran off excitedly into the sunshine.
You Wouldn’t Believe It
What a fucking rigmarole. But that wasn’t the only thing that went wrong that day. There were missed buses, drink spillages, broken bags, and all sorts. Meanwhile, here are some interesting things I found out about Friday 13th just now when I googled…
- Friday has been thought unlucky by various people since at least The Canterbury Tales (in the late 14th century).
- 13 has been an unlucky number for some [it's one of my lucky ones] for a long time, partly because it comes after 12 which is so often a “lucky” one – 12 apostles, 12 fairy godmothers, 12 months in the year, and so on.
- The evil The Da Vinci Code [curse you, Dan Brown] has convinced half the world that the Friday 13th superstition got started when a long list of Knights Templar got arrested on Friday, 13 October 1307.
- Spanish and Greek cultures often have the same superstition about Tuesday the 13th; Italians don’t like Friday the 17th.
Other related stuff we posted: