7 Creepy Things That Have Happened On Friday The 13th
As Michael Scott once said on The Office, "I'm not superstitious, but I am a little stitious." That pretty much sums up my attitude toward Friday the 13th — I'm not going to hide inside my house all day, but if anything bad happens, I will be side-eyeing the calendar. We're lucky enough to have the 13th fall on a Friday twice this year. The first occurrence was in January, and the second is this week. You may be asking yourself whether creepy things actually happen on Friday the 13th. Experts say there's no evidence the day itself is unlucky, so you should probably just live life as you normally would. But, if you believe some of the most common superstitions, you'll likely avoid black cats, turn down anyone who asks you on a date and only open an umbrella outdoors. It can't hurt, right? If you're a bit of a rebel, you could also laugh in the face of fear and purposely break mirrors, step on sidewalk cracks and pull out gray hairs. Even though statistics aren't on the side of the superstitious, some pretty creepy things have gone down on Friday the 13th. Call it coincidence, but it's been a pretty grim day historically. You may want to grab a rabbit's foot as you read on.
A Teen Boy Is Struck By Lightning
Being struck by lightning isn't very likely to happen to you. There's a 1 in 3,000 chance you'll get struck. Compare that to your odds of getting in a car crash: The average person will get in a wreck three or four times during their lifetime. But one 13-year-old boy got pretty unlucky on Aug. 13, 2010, when he was struck by lightning at a festival. Get this: The lightning struck at 1:13 p.m., or 13:13 on a 24-hour clock. Spooky.
Rap Legend Tupac Shakur Is Killed
On Friday, Sept. 13, 1996, Tupac Shakur was killed in a drive-by shooting. After 21 years, authorities still don't know who murdered the rap legend. Shakur's death shocked the hip-hop industry, and artists like Kendrick Lamar still pay homage to the star. Of course, it's not likely the shooter intended to kill Shakur on the spookiest day of the year, but it's widely acknowledged as one of the worst things to happen on Friday the 13th.
The U.S. Stock Market Crashes
Exactly 17 years after both of those tragic plane crashes, the U.S. stock market hit an unexpected slump. The date was Oct. 13, 1989, and both the S&P 500 and Dow Jones dropped dramatically in value. It's referred to as a mini-crash, and This was an anomaly, though: Friday the 13th is actually historically a good day for stock trading.
A Plane Crash Leaves 174 People Dead
The most famous Friday the 13th plane crash is arguably the Andes mountains disaster. On Oct. 13, 1972, a plane transporting an Uruguayan rugby team crashed in Chile, and survivors were forced to cannibalize their dead friends in order to live. They weren't discovered by rescuers for 72 days.
Incredibly, the Andes tragedy wasn't the worst aviation accident that day. Another awful crash happened thousands of miles away on that Oct. 13: A Russian flight turned tragic once the plane encountered complications, and investigators still don't know what happened. Everyone on board was killed.
A Luxury Cruise Liner Sinks
Your chances of dying on a cruise ship are extremely low, and modern cruise ships almost never sink. The Costa Concordia tragedy was a heartbreaking rarity. On Jan. 13, 2012, the Italian ship hit a rock and capsized, killing 32 people. The ship's captain was charged with causing the wreck and abandoning passengers, and was sentenced to 16 years in jail.
Kitty Genovese Is Attacked
If you've taken a psychology class (or are a close watcher of HBO's Girls), you've likely heard the name Kitty Genovese. The 28-year-old was stabbed to death outside of her apartment on Friday, Mar. 13, 1964, and newspapers reported that onlookers did nothing to help. Social scientists described what happened as the "bystander effect," even though it was revealed decades later that bystanders did intervene.
Nazis Bomb Buckingham Palace
On Sept. 13, 1940, German fighters dropped five bombs on Buckingham Palace. One person died, and both King George VI and Queen Elizabeth were home at the time. It was one of many attacks during World War II, but people took notice because of the unlucky day it occurred.
Regardless of how you choose to spend the 13th, I'm crossing my fingers you won't get too unlucky. If nothing else, you can use it as an excuse to share great memes.
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