Thank God It's Friday?

Dealing with life's negatives has never been my forte. When it comes to tackling problems head-on I'm that person with said head in the sand. The "ignorance is bliss" dude. The "what you don't don't know won't hurt you" guy. Ya' know, until it does. And by then it's too late so... "c’est la vie" (yeah, I went French there). For me it's simple: negative energy begets more negative energy (and a bit biblical there). And you can say that's unrealistic, totally immature and downright cowardly but it beats a certain someone I know who stared adversity in the face in the form of what they thought--after an extensive google search--to be life-threatening medical symptoms had them re-writing their will, expediting burial plans and making last minute calls to loved ones. Needless to say, later callbacks to explain it was only indigestion--mild indigestion, at that--weren't well received. Lessons learned?... Don't poke the bear. And never, ever google your medical symptoms (and no, it wasn't me).

Okay, with all that being said, why do a blog about Friday the 13th?... Ahh, finally. So that's what this is all about (I know, I know; meander much?). Why go out of my way to mention a day known by all to be associated with bad luck and misfortune? Why not leave well enough alone and practice what I preached in the last paragraph? A valid query and one that will be answered later on but being as this is the actual infamous day in question and time is of the essence ('cause, like, who knows, a chandelier could fall on my head any time now) it's probably best we get a little background on this phobia shared by so many.

Paraskevidekatriaphobia!... For those of you who mumbled "gesundheit" or "God bless you" under your breath?... yeah, really childish and definitely played to death. So yes, it's an actual word meaning "the fear of Friday the 13th". According to psychologists, this superstition, as well as others, is an attempt to control things that are beyond one's control and a way of dealing with the anxiety associated with this lack of control. There's also an evolutionary reason: to mistake seeing danger where there is no danger actually increases our chance of survival, a way of honing our alertness response. And finally, there's the purely sociological aspect: knowing other people believe it makes it more likely you will too. Sorta like when a close friend talks up the virtues of Bitcoin and coaxes you to invest your last dollar in it just weeks before it drops 50% in two days? (again, that wasn't me).

So this picking out of a specific date and day of the week and somehow feeling like it has some magical power to mess you up... where did that come from? Some trace the origin to a Norse myth involving 12 gods attending a dinner party in Valhalla receiving the trickster, Loki, an uninvited 13th guest who arranged to have the god, Hoor--you know, the blind son of Odin and Frigg?--shoot and kill the god, Baldr--yeah, his bro--with a mistletoe-tipped arrow (and I thought my family reunions were disfunctional). And if you wanna go the Christian route there's The Last Supper, with 13 guests--Jesus and his 12 apostles--including Judas, his betrayer, the man responsible for his death on Good Friday. Friday was also purported to be the day Eve gave Adam the apple and Cain killed Abel (in their defense they were both coming off a really tough week). Either way, bottom line: Fridays and thirteen have been carrying around some serious baggage for a very long time.

Alright, so getting back to the question raised earlier: Why would I, one who believes in leaving well enough alone, decide to put a spotlight on the mother of all superstitious dates?... To cite the words of George Mallory back in 1924 when asked why he wanted to climb Mount Everest, "Because it's there". And no, I'm not being glib. FYI, writers tend to be a lazy bunch, as in the case of the one who forsook (again with the biblical?) his convictions in favor of ascertaining a certain "joie de vivre" (likewise the French?) in finding an easy solution to a looming self-imposed two week deadline for his blog (okay, so maybe that one was me).