Number 13 – On the 13th Day!
– Get Rid of the Thirteenth
Sizdah Bedar is the thirteenth day of the Iranian New Year called Nowruz. Nowruz has been celebrated since ancient times Nowruz lasts thirteen days and Sizdah Bedar is the final day.
Thirteen is considered bad luck.
On this day people will leave their homes and spend the day outdoors having picnics.
This is the day to get rid of all bad thoughts and have a good time outdoors. Young women may tie grass in knots and make a wish for a good husband.
As the day ends, the sabzeh is thrown out in running water. The sabzeh will carry away the ill fortunes of the family it has gathered during the Nowruz.
The sabzeh is one of the Seven S’s.
Another custom of Sizdah Bedar is “Dorugh-e Sizdah”, which means “the lie of the thirteenth”.
It is a lot like the Western April Fool’s Day, lying to someone and making them believe it all in good nature.
Sizdah Bedar is celebrated in many parts of the world. Sizdah is the Persian word for thirteen. Sizdah Bedar often coincides with April 1st in the Gregorian calendar.
The French Templars
Friday, October 13, 1307 King Philip IV (Philip the Fair) ordered the arrest of the Templars in France.
They were tortured and forced to give false confessions and then burned on the stake.
The French Templars had great wealth and Philip IV had been in debt to them.
Maha Shivaratri: The Great Night of Shiva
The thirteenth night of the waning moon in the Hindu month of Maagha is sacred to Shiva.
Maha Shivaratri means “the great night of Shiva”.
It was on this thirteenth night Shiva preformed the Tandava, the dance of creation, preservation and dissolution.
On Maha Shivaratri the devotees fast and carry out all-night vigil. The next day is full of feasting.
First U.S. Government Loan
September 13, 1789 The United States government took out a loan for the very first time.
The U.S. government took the loan from banks in New York City.
James Braddock won the heavyweight championship of the world on June 13, 1935, at Madison Square Garden Bowl, as the 10-to-1 underdog in one of the most astonishing performances in boxing history.
The movie “Cinderella Man” is based on the biography of Braddock.
Pope Gregory XIII
Pope Gregory XIII (1502-1585) began his papacy on May 13, 1572.
He was famous for his reformation of the calendar, replacing the Julian calendar with the Gregorian calendar.
On the side note; he founded the Greek College on May 13, 1577.
When the Russians started to use the Gregorian calendar in 1918, they skipped thirteen days; Wednesday January 31, 1918 was followed by Thursday January 14, 1918.
The country therefore has thirteen “lost” days.
Greece also wiped out thirteen days when the Gregorian calendar was adopted. In Greece, Wednesday February 15, 1923 was followed by Thursday March 1, 1923
Christ the Redeemer of the Andes
On March 13, 1904 the statue “Christ the Redeemer of the Andes” was unveiled on the border between Chile and Argentina.
This marked the peace made between the two countries after long border disputes.
A sign in Spanish on the base reads:
“Sooner shall these mountains crumble into dust than Argentines and Chileans break peace sworn at the feet of Christ the Redeemer”.
Thai New Year
The first day of the Thai New Year (Songkran) is April 13th.Be prepared to get soaking wet. A big part of the celebration is to splash water on other people, strangers as well as friends.
Anything may be used for this purpose: gardens hoses, water guns, buckets and so on. The splashing of water is a symbol of washing the bad away.
In India April 13th is the day Vaisakhi is celebrated. This is a major celebration of giving thanks for the winter crops. People may choose to bathe in Holy Rivers on this day. It may also be celebrated by parades, singing and dancing. One could say it is a huge Thanksgiving festival.
This festival on April 13th is very important also to the Sikhs and they will call it Baisakhi. It was on this special day that the 10th Guru Gobind Singh initiated the five pure ones. It also honors all those who have accepted the 5 K’s. Baisakhi is celebrated by Sikhs all over the world.
Lego Container Lost at Sea
On February 13, 1997 a colossal wave slammed a ship headed for New York. A container filled with over 5 million Lego pieces was thrust into the ocean and smashed open. Ever since that day there have been countless reports of people finding Lego pieces along the shores of Cornwell, England.
The Lego seems to be in perfect condition and best of all most of the Lego found are related to sea life. February 13th may have been unlucky for the shipping company, but not so for all the happy kids who to this day find Lego treasures on the beaches.
The first striptease open to the general public in the Western world was performed in the Divan Fayounau Theater in Paris, France. This controversial performance took place on March 13th.
The Lindbergh Law
The Congress passed the “Lindbergh Law” on June 13, 1932, which making kidnapping a federal offense.
It was called the Lindbergh Law because a month earlier Charles Lindberg’ 20 month old son had been kidnapped from his home in New Jersey.
After a 10-week nationwide search and paying $50 000, the body of his dead son was found in the woods close to his home.
Lindbergh was an airplane pilot famous for making the solo non-stop flight across the Atlantic Ocean in 1927.
Bruno Richard Hauptmann, a 34-year old German immigrant carpenter was charged with the kidnapping, extortion, and first degree murder.
On February 13, 1935 the judge Thomas Trenchard sentenced Hauptmann to death.
Claudius I Murdered
October 13, 54 A.D. Claudius I (Roman Emperor) was murdered. He was poisoned by his wife, Agrippina. His successor was his stepson Nero. Nero was the son of Agrippina from an earlier marriage.
Jean Paul Marat (a radical politician from the French Revolution) was stabbed to death in his bathtub July 13, 1793.
Picture by Jacques-Louis David
More about Number 13- on the 13th
Martin Luther married former nun, Katharina von Bora on June 13, 1525.
Alfred Hitchcock was born Friday August 13, 1899.
Butch Cassidy, the American bank and train robber, was born on Friday April 13, 1866.
Fidel Castro, Prime Minister of Cuba, was born Friday August 13, 1926.
Julia Louis-Dreyfus, actress best known for her role as Elaine Benes in Seinfeld, was born Friday January 13, 1961.
Mary-Kate and Asley Olsen, actresses, were born Friday June 13, 1986.
Tunisia celebrates Women’s Day on August 13th annually.
The Opening ceremony of the Athens Olympic Games took place Friday, August 13, 2004.
The First New York Marathon took place September 13, 1970.
Princess Grace of Monaco (former actress Grace Kelly) had a stroke while driving her car on September 13, 1982 and crashed. Her daughter Stephanie (born in 1965) was also in the car; Stephanie survived the car crash and is fine. Princess Grace died the following day.
On March 13, 2013 Pope Francis (from Argentina) was elected to be Pope. He is the very first Jesuit Pope and also the first ever from Americas.