In case you thought your luck couldn’t get any worse, July 13 falls on a Friday. To ease your superstitious fears, here are five things to know:
1. It happens every year.
This is the last of two Fridays this year that fall on a 13th. The next one isn’t until September 2019. It’s possible for a standard year (not a leap year) to have as many as three such Fridays, as it will in 2026, when Friday the 13th occurs in February, March and November.
2. It’s not unlucky for everyone.
The original 1980 movie “Friday the 13th” cost $550,000 to make and $1.5 million to market, but ended up earning almost $40 million at the box office in the United States alone.
3. It has its own phobia.
Paraskevidekatriaphobia comes from the Greek words for Friday (“paraskevi”), 13 (“dekatria”) and fear (“phobia”). The therapist who coined the term in the 1990s used to tell people that when you can pronounce paraskevidekatriaphobia, you’re cured.
4. Other days are “unlucky.”
Superstitious people in Greece and in some Spanish-speaking countries think Tuesday the 13th is bad luck. Italians consider Friday the 17th unlucky, supposedly because an anagram for XVII, the Roman numeral for 17, is VIXI — or “I lived” in Latin — which suggests imminent death.
5. OK, it can be unlucky for some.
A plane crashed in the Andes on Oct. 13, 1972, and the survivors infamously resorted to cannibalism; Tupac Shakur died on Sept. 13, 1996, after being shot in Las Vegas; and on April 13, 2029, a 1,200-foot-wide asteroid will pass within 18,000 miles of Earth, which is closer than some satellite orbits.