This year is really pressing our collective luck — today is the third Friday the 13th we’ve had this year. The next time this happens won’t be until 2026. Adding to the unusualness, today is also the last time this century that the date will have three consecutive odd numbers.
While academics are a little uncertain on this, it’s thought that the fearful vibes around Friday the 13th began in the Medieval Ages and can be linked to Christianity. It’s thought that Jesus was crucified on a Friday, Judas was the 13th person at the last dinner supper — all not so chill things.
Some people are so tripped up on this date that they are paraskavedekatriaphobes — those who have an actual fear of the number 13, but only on Fridays. To figure out how to say the tricky word listen to the dulcet tones of NPR broadcasters.
Is there anything about Friday the 13th that actually merits phobias? The answer is pretty much nah. It can actually be safer than your average Friday. A study by Dutch statisticians found that fewer accidents, reports of fire, and incidents of theft occur when the 13th month falls on Friday compared to the average Friday.
“I find it hard to believe that it is because people are preventatively more careful or just stay at home, but statistically speaking, driving is a little bit safer on Friday 13th,” said study author Alex Hoens, ever the dubious statistician.
So go out and live your Friday like you always would — but maybe avoid any ladders just to be safe. No really — 43 percent of fatal falls in the last decade involved a ladder.