2013 or enough of all this superstition
by Thomas Wagner | Jan 1, 2013
Animation © Sabrina Spee, Stylepark

It’s 2013! The empty champagne bottles have barely been cleared away and the new year is already being eyed with suspicion. For, alas, the number 13 has something of a bad rep. Many even consider it an extremely unlucky number. 13 guests at a table? No way. Hotel room no. 13? Empty. An apartment on the 13th floor. No thank you. The list is endless. And now this to boot. Welcome to 2013!

But you must admit this particular superstition is a little strange. After all, a Friday that falls on the 13th can do as little about its chronology as this new year can. 2012 is followed by 2013. What is it about this number? Where does this feeling of uneasiness that is currently stalking so many of our fellow men come from?

If we leave these mystical numeric speculations aside, we must admit that even if things today aren’t all hunky-dory, our suspicion toward 2013 is in fact fueled by events that happened not 100 but 99 years ago. The First World War… and everything that followed it. In uneasy yet nostalgic retrospect, the year 1913 is glorified as the “eve” of all the catastrophes that the 20th century would see. With so much backward-looking prophecy, the average guy must be left thinking: Oh dear, what are we in for now?

But now enough of all this superstition, enough of this regressive thought that leaves us quaking in our boots! History doesn’t repeat itself. And if it does then it will do so in another year, on another day. 13 = 12 + 1. Why get yourself all het up just because this one number marches to a different drummer? If you don’t consider 13 a lucky number, then you’re a fraidy cat, someone who simply falls into line rather than taking your cue from the number 13 and breaking ranks. After all, doesn’t the wonderful, unruly number 13 stand for a prank? An impromptu hop from one to three? A spirited leap beyond the expected? Even Christianity can thank the number 13 for more than one might think. Or did I count incorrectly: Jesus had 12 disciples, so if you include him that makes a group of 13 determined men.

Who knows, perhaps despite all of the superstitious skeptics 2013 will turn out to be a surprising, wild, great, wonderful, progressive, successful, prancing, exhilarating year? Nobody knows what is to come. Everything is still shrouded in uncertainty, possibility.

But two things are for certain:

1. The whole thing with the Mayan calendar has taken care of itself once and for all. The year 2013 has arrived – we’ve survived the end of the world once again.

2. No matter how many Fridays fall on the 13th, at least there is one date that is certain not to come up on our calendars in 2013: 13.13.13! I bet that would have been a lucky day.

Animation © Sabrina Spee, Stylepark
Animation © Sabrina Spee, Stylepark