Jun 13, 2008

Friday the 13th


It's Friday the 13th ya'll!! Do you know there are people that actually fear this day? Call this a phobia if you must (fyi: the phobia is called paraskevidekatriaphobia). Back in the day, we would head out on Friday the 13th and party with a horrifying amount of alcohol. Oh wait, that was a daily thing!

Anyhow...according to the Stress Management Center and Phobia Institute in Asheville, North Carolina, more than 67 million people are affected by a fear of this day. Some people are so paralyzed by fear that they avoid their normal routines like doing business, taking flights or even getting out of bed.

These people won't be happy to know that next year has 3 Fridays the 13th (February, March and November). That's mega fear balls!

Here's a look at some unfortunate events that has happened on past Fridays the 13th...

Black Friday bushfires in Victoria, Australia (1939) - 4,942,000 acres of land was burnt, 71 people died, several towns were entirely destroyed, over 1,300 homes and 69 sawmills were burnt and a total of 3,700 buildings were destroyed.

Uruguay Rugby team Plane Crash (1972) - Uruguayan Air Force Flight 571 crashed in the Andes and killed 29 out of the 45 people on board. 24 were from the rugby team and 5 were Flight 571 crew.

Hurricane Charley (2004) - Hurricane Charley struck the northern tip of Captiva Island and the southern tip of North Captiva Island, causing severe damage in both areas. Throughout the United States, Charley caused 10 deaths and US$15.4 billion in damage, making Charley the fourth costliest hurricane in United States history at the time.

And some time in the near future, 99942 Apophis (near-Earth asteroid), will pass through a gravitational keyhole, a precise region in space no more than about 400 meters across. Scientists rate the chances of Apophis hitting earth as slim. But they also say this...
The B612 Foundation made estimates of Apophis path if a 2036 Earth impact were to occur as part of an effort to develop viable deflection strategies. The result is a narrow corridor a few miles wide, called the path of risk, and it includes most of southern Russia, across the north Pacific (relatively close to the coastlines of the California and Mexico), then right between Nicaragua and Costa Rica, crossing northern Colombia and Venezuela, ending in the Atlantic, just before reaching Africa.

Using the computer simulation tool NEOSim, it was estimated that the hypothetical impact of Apophis in countries such as Colombia and Venezuela, which are in the path of risk, would have had more than 10 million casualties. An impact several thousand miles off the West Coast of the US would produce a devastating tsunami.
Now that's messed up! I'm signing off. Keep safe and god bless!

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