“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”
They’ve been ‘beautiful’, they’ve been ‘big’ and they’ve been ‘unusual’.
Today we have ‘significant’ number thirteen, unlucky for some.
The number 13 seems to give a lot of people trouble. Indeed the fear of the number 13 is so pervasive that it even has a phobia named after it – triskaidekaphobia.
In the Bible.
- At the Last Supper in Christian theology, there were 13 dinner guests, so that number is unlucky because Christ was betrayed.
- Thirteen famines are recorded in the Scriptures.
- The destruction of Jericho is stamped with the number thirteen, because the city was compassed once each day for six days, and seven times on the seventh day, making 13 times in all (6+7).
- All the names of Satan are divisible by thirteen.
- In Mark 7 Jesus mentions thirteen things that defile a person (evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lewdness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride and foolishness).
- The ancient Hebrews thought 13 was unlucky because the thirteenth letter of the Hebrew alphabet is the letter M, which is the first letter in the word “mavet,” meaning death.
- In Norse mythology, 12 benevolent gods were gathering in a hall and the evil god Loki attacked the group. Loki was the 13th guest, and the god Balder was killed in the melee.
- President Franklin D. Roosevelt was quite fearful of the number 13, and he took great pains to avoid hosting a meal for a group of that size. It is said that if he had a cancellation and it looked as if there might be 13 people to lunch, he would invite his secretary to join them so there wouldn’t be 13.
- Industrialist Henry Ford wouldn’t do business on Friday, the 13th.
- Multimillionaire Paul Getty once stated “I wouldn’t care to be one of thirteen at a table.”
- Some speculate that a fear of the number 13 is the reason we recognize only 12 constellations in the Zodiac, omitting a thirteenth… Ophiuchus ( the Serpent Holder) that, by its location, could be included.
- Years ago, London bakers were subject to harsh penalties if they were caught selling bread in what was called short weight. The bakers would add an extra loaf to each dozen to be sure the sale met the minimum weight requirement. They avoided the word thirteen and the process of adding an extra loaf became known as the “baker’s dozen.”
- Some airlines do not have a 13th row.
- Most tall buildings do not have a 13th floor.
- Many hotel guests refuse to stay in Room 13, so rooms are frequently numbered 12, 12A, and 14.
- The 13th card of the Tarot is the card of Death.
- The composer, Arnold Schoenberg, was a noted triskaidekaphobe. He died as he had predicted at the age of 76 (7+6=13), on a Friday 13th at 13 minutes to midnight.
- In April 1970, NASA launched Apollo 13 at 1313 hours Central Time from pad 39. The flight was commanded by James A. Lovell with John L. “Jack” Swigert as Command Module pilot and Fred W. Haise as Lunar Module pilot. (Swigert was a late replacement for the original CM pilot Ken Mattingly, who was grounded by the flight surgeon after exposure to German measles.) They were scheduled for rest periods beginning 13 minutes past the hour and on April 13 at 21:07:53 CST (55:54:53 Ground Elapsed Time) an oxygen tank exploded and the mission had to be aborted. The rest is history – and a movie, Apollo 13, based on ‘Lost Moon’, Jim Lovell’s and Jeffrey Kluger’s book about the event.
Friday the 13th Myths:
- If you cut your hair on Friday the 13th, someone in your family will die.
- A child born on Friday the 13th will be unlucky for life.
- If a funeral procession passes you on Friday the 13th, you will be the next to die.
In the United States
- the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution officially outlaws slavery and involuntary servitude, except as punishment for a crime.
- thirteen colonies rebelled against British Rule and King George III in what led to the American Revolutionary War and the eventual birth of the United States of America. The colonies were Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Georgia, Connecticut, Massachusetts Bay, Maryland, South Carolina, New Hampshire, Virginia, New York, North Carolina, and Rhode Island and Providence Plantations.
- there are thirteen stripes on the USA flag to commemorate these original colonies.