It’s Friday the 13th. The name of the day alone can inspire a superstitious shiver. There’s even a name for fear of it: paraskevidekatriaphobia. It causes all kinds of issues, because so many people won’t travel, get married, or even leave the house on this date!
But really, it’s nothing to be afraid of. First of all, it’s Friday. That in and of itself is a wonderful thing! Second, what’s wrong with poor number 13? It didn’t do anything to anybody.
When you dig a little deeper into the origin of just why Friday the 13th is considered unlucky, it becomes extremely interesting. First of all, thirteen has been considered a strange number in many different cultures for centuries, although not necessarily an unlucky one. Historians think this might be because of simple mathematics: the number twelve is seen as a “perfect” number, readily divisible by 2, 3, and 4, and 13, the number immediately following it, is a prime number and something of an outlier.
The number 13 was considered unlucky in the Norse pantheon, which may have been where paraskevidekatriaphobia originated. According to the story, twelve gods showed up for a dinner, and Loki the trickster showed up uninvited, bringing the total number to thirteen just before he shot Baldur the Beautiful with an arrow and killed him. (Of course, when you look at it that way, it seems like twelve is the unlucky number, not thirteen!)
The fear of Friday, on the other hand, seems to come partly from Christianity. Adam and Eve apparently died on a Friday, the Temple of Solomon was destroyed, and Jesus was crucified on a Friday. Fear of Friday, like fear of the number 13, also seems to have come from Scandinavian mythology: Freya, after whom Friday is named, was the goddess of love, beauty, wisdom… and death.
Since there seem to be so many ties between Norse mythology and Friday the 13th, we recommend trying out something very Nordic this evening: Mead, or honey wine.
Meads, when done right, taste like flowers and honey, and are just as delightful iced as they are heated with spices.
While there are a number of meads to choose from, but only one full-time meadery in San Diego that we know of. Golden Coast Meads, in Oceanside and Julian, would be one of our favorites even if it wasn’t local, not just for their drinks but because of their message of sustainability.
So go out and try some mead and remember, Friday the 13th can be a honey of a day! It’s all in how you look at it.