Diners test their luck on Friday the 13th
Friday, May 13 – the only Friday the thirteenth of 2011, a day that makes the superstitious and unlucky tread a little more carefully since the mid 1800s.
In Ottawa, brave souls who really wanted to tempt fate could hunker down at a certain Little Italy bistro.
"Not that many people would remember until I would tell them oh, you're sitting in the Black Cat on Friday the thirteenth," said Richard Urquhart, owner of the Black Cat Bistro.
As well, Urquhart said his "BLK CAT" license plate puts more reluctance into these superstitious days of the year.
"For years I wouldn't even drive my car, I was so superstitious on Friday the thirteenth," he said. "I was afraid I'd get in an accident."
The Internet is rife with potential origins for the fear of Friday the thirteenth (or paraskevidekatriaphobia): for Egypt, there were twelve stages of life and the thirteenth was death; Friday became a day associated with witchcraft when Christianity became popular, and Christ was crucified on a Friday.
However, the day is not all negative. The Friday the Thirteenth movie franchise has grossed over $380 million since the original in 1980, according to boxofficemojo.com.
It also happened to be a day for a long-awaited reunion at the Black Cat Bistro for two old work friends.
"I think today . . . is a very good day for good luck because I've gotten to see my good friend James, who I haven't seen in a while," said Jane Daly, who re-connected with her friend James Welsch.
There are three Friday the thirteenths in 2012 – January, April and July. That is, if another (Mayan) superstition doesn't come true and the world ends that year . . .
With a report from CTV Ottawa's Norman Fetterley