Friday, August 13, 2010

Superstitions



Most people often participate in superstitions, even without realizing it (ever knocked on wood?). As today is Friday the 13th, I'm wondering how many of you have that ominous belief that today will be filled with bad luck. After researching the actual effects of this day in the number of accidents that occur compared to other Fridays, the results surprised me. Most surprising was that there were very few studies on the topic and the two that I did find seemed to contradict each other. The logical side of me wants to believe that if there's any connection between Friday the 13th and bad luck, it's due to an increased level of anxiety or fear that changes behaviors rather than an unexplainable black cloud of misfortune. I found this article written by Atul Gawande about a non-believing surgical resident doing a rotation in the E.R. on a particular Friday the 13th (after being warned that it would be a busy night and dismissing the warnings as ridiculous). Read the entire article here.

"...Nonetheless, I came on duty that evening to find the resident from whom I was taking over swamped with patients. He stayed late to help me catch up. Just after he left, a new trauma victim rolled in--a 28-year-old who had been knocked unconscious in a high-speed head-on collision. The police and paramedics said he had been stalking his girlfriend with gun in hand. He fled in his car when cops arrived and led them on a chase that ended in the massive crash. The rest of the night was no better. I was, as we say, "slammed." It's full moon Friday the 13th, a nurse explained. I was about to say that studies showed no connection. But my pager went off before I could start. I had a new patient coming in."

I asked Gabe to weigh in on this from his residency days in the E.R. and he didn't have any recollection of it being any busier on the day in question. He did, however, inform me that there isn't an Operating Room #13 in the hospital (even though there is a #12 and #14). How do you feel about Friday the 13th? Do you believe in superstitions?

42 comments:

Katie said...

I'm a little superstitious - but hope that any bad luck on Friday the 13th is just a self fulfilling prophecy!

Diana Mieczan said...

I didnt even realize...Its really the Friday the 13th today?...I am a little superstitious but I ususally try not to think about all the bad stuff that might happen...One think my grandma told me years ago is not to walk under a ladder...Its bad luck:)

Hope your Friday will be happy:)

Kisses,sweetie

ChinkyGirLMeL said...

Oh gosh, I have always heard that Friday the 13th is bad luck, but in my 20 something years of life I don't think I've ever had any bad luck fall on me just because it was Friday the 13th,but I have heard of a lot of stories about this day.

Kristin said...

I am very superstitious, but mainly when it comes to sporting events. Like wearing the same clothes after a win, or only sitting in a certain place. I definitely agree that Friday the 13th's bad luck is caused by people believing they are going to have bad luck...Law of Attraction.

Torrie said...

I'm not superstitious at all. My husband isn't either, so luckily we're on the same page there:). I don't believe in 'bad luck' but I don't believe in 'good luck' either. I do say the phrase, "That was [or, We were] sooooo lucky." But when it comes down to it, I don't think luck has anything to do with it.

It's funny though, because I know some people who are totally opposite - very superstitious (beliefs that were passed down from their mom's and grandma's). It cracks me up! :)

Lisa Griffin said...

I kind of want to read this article now. I'm a little superstitious but not particuarly about this day. My office doesn't have a floor 13 thouhg!
www.indramaticfashion.com

Annie said...

I'm not superstitious so I really don't get freaked out by Friday the 13th, but then again I would avoid that date for getting married and other big events so maybe I'm a tad superstitious in reality ;) It's so interesting that hospitals, buildings, etc all leave out the #13 - I guess it goes to show how big the superstition really is!

style'n said...

I am definitely superstitious about black cats crossing my path! ok checking out that article. Hope you have a great weekend Valerie,
naina

Nikki said...

I hadn't realized today was the 13th, you just reminded me!
yikes!
I definitely knock on wood at least once a day!

xx
Nikki

Jaime @ La vie...J'aime said...

I am a bit... I think I am going to get a lottery ticket- per my mom's suggestion :)

Poppies and Sunshine said...

I don't believe in superstitions, but then again, I don't think I could have any worse luck than I have been having lately. lol. If anything I'm hoping for my luck to turn around!
I hope you have a wonderful, and safe, weekend!!

20 York Street said...

Uh-oh! Didn't realize its Friday the 13th today! Now, I'm a little freaked out. Don't think something ever bad happened to me on days like this...

Knock on wood! =)

Gabriel said...

Friday the 13th really snuck up on me this year. I am superstitious so I'm going to be careful today and knock on wood every chance I get(not alot of wood around the hospital).

Lindsay said...

I didn't realize it was friday the 13th! WOW! I am not all the superstitious but I do say knock on wood (out of habit I think). Great post!

Marcie said...

I love this post, Val! And thanks for the reminder. I forgot today was Friday the 13th! I am not very superstitious; however, I do knock on wood all the time and don't walk under ladders. Okay, maybe I am a bit superstitious.

Have a fantastic and safe weekend! :)
xo M

Melissa said...

I like your theory about Friday the 13th and self-fulfilling prophecies, of some sort.

Same Sweet Girl: Memoir of a Southern Belle said...

I don't REALLY believe in the whole superstition thing...BUT I can't help getting just a little scared if I walk under a ladder or a black cat crosses me. I also have a thing about opening an umbrella in the house. LOL

Ms. Emily Ann said...

Interesting about the operating room.. most hotels doen't have a 13th floor either. I try to think of it as any other day, but a part of me is extra cautious on Friday the 13th!

Josie said...

I'm not especially superstitious, but it never hurts to walk around a ladder rather than under it, in my opinion! That's really interesting about the operating room, though!
xo Josie
http://winksmilestyle.blogspot.com

this free bird said...

Oooooohhhhh I loved that spilled salt entry there!! spooooky.

I'm not that superstitious about the 13th, but I do believe that things come in 3's. It's happened to me so many times. oy

Have a wonderful weekend. I think it's actually warm!!

xoxo,
Carrie
ps-SHOES!

Melanie said...

I keep forgetting it's Friday the 13th. I have a solid black cat, too. My only real superstition involves sports (hockey in particular). If I don't start a game at the beginning and then the second I do turn it on the other team scores, I turn it right back off.

Melanie@UnravelledThreads

Cafe Fashionista said...

To be completely honest, I forgot it was even Friday the 13th until I read this post!! :P

Absolutely Ladylike said...

Ha ha ha, I'm not so much into these stuff but to be honest I'm not such a big fan of Friday 13th either LOL. Great post!

Have a great weekend my dear friend.

Cheers: Evi

Anna Walker said...

I don't believe in superstitions! But I love love love Friday the 13th...actually I believe it is a day for good luck! Is that weird?

annelise said...

I do things like touch wood, never put the umbrella up inside, or put new shoes on a table (my mother loses it if that is ever done!), but I think they're more out of habit than an actual belief that anything will bad will happen. And I can say this with total confidence because it is now Saturday the 14th here in Australia ;)

Stephanie said...

I have little things that I'm superstitous about but for the most part I just believe in kharma.

Kisses,
Stephanie

Leia said...

Yesterday was Friday the 13th but I had an absolutely awesome day, so I would have to say no, I don't believe in superstitions!

Leia

FASHION BUTTER said...

I have a cat that looks exactly like the kitty in that last picture ... so I guess my answer is pretty clear. Haha! : )

Hiking in Stilettos said...

I totally went through then entire day without even realizing it was Friday the 13th! Also, my mom was born on Friday the 13th, and she is the most incredible woman I have ever met, so I am convinced that Fri 13th brings me good luck.

Krysten @ After 'I Do' said...

I didn't even realize it was Friday the 13th till after it was already halfway over. And aside from having to attend a funeral, my day went by just fine.

Theonlyfashionprincess said...

I'm not really superstitous. Saw your outfit at weardrobe, and i like it very much! You've got a nice blog and a great style. Hope you will become a follower of my blog too?
xoxo

http://theonlyfashionprincess.blogspot.com

Mademoiselle Frou-Frou said...

i'm not really into superstitions...i think it causes people to be paranoid and then something weird/bad does happen.
i made it through friday the 13th just fine. ;-)
xox alison

SabinePsynopsis said...

Strangely Friday, the 13th doesn't affect me at all - but neither do black cats or ladders. Love them all!

Jess said...

I don't know if I believe in superstitions like Friday the 13th. I think it might just be that if you think something bad is going to happen it probably will!

Becca said...

I'm not particularly superstitious, but yesterday for whatever reason, I just had a little bit of an ominous feeling! It was unwarranted though, everything was fine. I do think I would be a little wary to make my home on the 13th floor of a building. I think a lot of apartment buildings skip over the number 13 when designating floors for that very reason.

Kristin said...

I don't think I subscribe to the whole Friday the 13th thing. Watch, now something will happen to me. HA!

hiyaluv said...

i am superstitious. i knock on wood all the time! most hotels and buildings also skip floor 13-so fascinating that somebody started that "trend" forever ago and it stuck!
smiles,
gina

gleenn said...

haha! i don't believe in superstitious. however, based from my experience, some of them are better left respected than challenged.

Join our giveaway to win a fabulous dress. :)

Audrey Allure said...

I don't really believe in superstitions, although I do believe in not walking under a ladder haha.

Krystal said...

here it is a lucky day! i always hear that the ER, dr's offices are craziest on full moons - after working at a psych office i think i agree!

Jamie said...

Cool post!!
Personally I am more of a believer in manifesting your own energy. If you put negativity out there, you will get it back. If you put positivity out there you will get that back. I feel like we create most of what happens to us, whether you call it Karma or law of the universe or whatever. And BTW I actually had an AMAZING day Friday with the absolute best things happening, perhaps because I didn't even think about the fact that it was Friday the 13th! ;)

http://www.glamlatte.com

Join the Gossip said...

Woah, I didn't know there isn't an #13 operating room. It's like the hotels without the 13th floor...btw I stayed on the 14th floor in Vegas once. I was seriously freaked out because they skipped the 13th floor, so technically I was staying on the 13th haha.

I am way superstitious but not with all things. Friday the 13th doesn't bother me. Nor do black cats, knocking on wood, or spilt salt. Ladders, umbrellas indoors, 13th floors, stepping on cracks...that's a diif story ;)