Friday the 13th fun facts
Photo: Image by MGN Photo
It's the day that's been known to cause dread in many. In recent years, it's also helped sell a few more tickets to scary movies! According to medical experts, millions are affected by the fear of Friday the 13th, known as friggatriskaidekaphobia. Some will avoid flying on a plane and the fear prevents others from going to work or even getting out of bed. If you're not too scared to proceed, take a look at 13 facts we've uncovered about the day that some consider the unluckiest of the year.
1. There are two Friday the 13ths in 2013. The next occurs in December. In 2012, there were three Friday the 13ths on the calendar -- exactly 13 weeks apart. The last time that happend? 1984.
2. The fear of Friday the 13th is also known as paraskevidekatriaphobia. According to NPR, Dr. Donald Dossey at the Stress Management Center/Phobia Institute in Asheville, N.C., says that you're cured when you learn how to pronounce the word (which should happen some time around Saturday the 14th).
3. Some point to the Bible and Judas Iscariot as an early source of the phobia. He was considered by many to be the 13th guest at the Last Supper before Jesus' crucifixion (which occured on a Friday).
4. Although he was gunned down on Sept. 7, rapper Tupac Shakur died on Friday, Sept. 13, 1996.
5. In 1970, Apollo 13 was aborted after an explosion occurred in the fuel cell of their service module. The rocket had left the launching pad at 13:13 CST on April 13 (a Monday).
6. The longest period that can occur without a Friday the 13th is fourteen months.
7. Taylor Swift considers 13 her lucky number. She was born on Dec. 13, 1989 (a Wednesday) and turned 13 on Friday the 13th in 2002. Her first album went gold in just 13 weeks.
8. Next time you're in Paris and seated at a restaurant with 12 other diners, ask for a "quatorzieme." That's a professional 14th dinner guest.
9. Only five of the "Friday the 13th" films have been released on Friday the 13th.
10. On streets in Florence, Italy, the house between No. 12 and 14 is addressed No. 12 1/2. Italy has also eliminated the number 13 from their national lottery.
11. In San Francisco, there is no 13th Ave. The street between 12th and 14th Aves. is called Funston Ave.
12. A 1993 research paper published in the British Medical Journal found there was a higher risk of road accidents on Friday the 13th than on other Fridays.
13. Thirteen famous people born on Friday the 13th: Nathan Beford Forrest, founder of the Ku Klux Klan (July 1821); notorious outlaw Butch Cassidy (Apr. 1866); Alfred Hitchcok (Aug. 1899); playwright Samuel Beckett (Apr. 1906); "Get Smart" star Don Adams (Apr. 1923); former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher (Oct. 1925); Cuban leader Fidel Castro (August 1926); actor Christopher Plummer (Dec. 1929); actor Steve Buscemi (Dec. 1957); actress Julia Louis-Dreyfuss (Jan. 1961); country singer Darius Rucker (May 1966); Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen (June 1986).