2012 is packed with Friday the 13ths. We have three of them this year, and the first one is waiting to mess up your karma this Friday. If you believe in that sort of thing.

I have mixed feelings about Friday the 13th. I've had a couple of bad ones where everything seemed to go wrong, and there have been some that have passed without note.

Beyond the superstition and folklore surrounding the occurrence, and there is a lot, the belief in Friday the 13th largely seems to be a learned behavior in our society. As children we're taught that Friday the 13th is unlucky, so it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy in a way. There's a phobia named for the "irrational fear of Friday the 13th" called "Paraskevidekatriaphobia."

How Stuff Works put together a great article about Friday the 13th that's definitely worth a read. It delves much deeper into our collective fears of Fridays and the number 13.

Friday the 13th: a day badly in need of a new PR person, or a dark, unlucky day?