Yom 13th


Today is yet another Friday the 13th. We have them at least once a year and sometimes as many as three, so what’s the big deal? (A hint: any month starting on Sunday will have a Friday the 13th)

Interesting that the two superstitions married sometime in the late 1800s or early 1900s. No record of Friday 13 as unlucky before that. Plenty of unlucky Fridays, from the Crucifixion to Chaucer and later. Tons of 13 as an unlucky number, one away from the perfect 12.

So the first use in a book title seems to be 1907, a book about a Wall St. manipulated stock market crash. Hmm, very popular book in its time.

So maybe the two superstitions just seemed destined to be together but it took about 19 centuries.

And the kicker for this Friday the 13th is that it is also Yom Kippur, although that can never happen because Yom Kippur cannot fall on a Friday or a Sunday because Rosh Hoshanah can only fall on one of the four “Gates”, Monday, Tuesday, Thursday or Saturday. Even though it always falls on the 1st of Tishri.

All this to say that calendars are more complicated than you might think (exactly where is that 1/4 day per year? Did I oversleep?), and that superstitions are fun to read about, but a waste of time for living.

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