Opinion: Do you suffer from triskaidekaphobia?

March 14, 2020

Friday the 13th, is this an unlucky day or does it just have a bad reputation? This leap year only has two such anomalies. This one in March and another one in November. The fear of the number 13 is called triskaidekaphobia. If you check YouTube, there are even a couple of songs titled “Triskaidekaphobia.”

 

Fun fact, hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia is the fear of long words.

 

From an early age, I’ve been entertained by words and their meanings. I shudder to think what a nightmare know-it-all child I would have been growing up with the Internet at my fingertips.

Even as an adult, it is so easy to waste hours reading articles and watching all the bizarre, yet interesting garbage there is on the Internet.

 

I practiced repeating the word antidisestablishmentarianism believing with its 28 letters to be the longest word in the English language. At the time, I had no idea what it meant but by golly, I could sure pronounce it from about the age of 6. According to the ever-popular Google, it means opposition to the disestablishment of the Church of England.

 

Then, my mother, the nurse, came home with an even longer word, pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanokoniosis, also known as black lung. It is a common malady of coal miners. It has 45 letters and is generally considered as the longest word in the English language.

 

The day my mother gave me my very own dictionary I was a very happy child. I read and reread it until I thought I knew every word in it. I don’t know if other children read the dictionary. As the youngest in my family, there are no younger siblings to compare. I don’t recall my older brothers reading anything but comic books and Mad Magazine.

 

When I was in the eighth grade, we lived on Maple Street, near Madera Avenue. The Farmer’s Market, owned by the Gong family, was on my route to the bus stop. They had the best selection of teen fan magazines such as “16” and “Tiger Beat.” On the pages of these tomes, the latest news of pop music stars was accompanied by their high gloss color photos. These magazines carried stories of young actors such as Desi Arnez Jr, Michael Landon and my all-time favorite bubble gum pop star, Bobby Sherman.

 

The put-together teen heartthrob band The Monkees did its best to appeal to young audiences with its obvious larceny of the Beatles movies “A Hard Day’s Night” and “Help.”

 

Dr. Brent Gong a local chiropractor and a high school classmate is the son of the family who owned Farmer’s Market.

 

March is National Reading Month. This month is designated to motivate Americans of all ages to read every day, said Google. Reading regularly has been linked to the development of positive mental health throughout our lives. It is never too early to help children develop a passion for stories and to develop their reading skills.

 

Mercury has finally returned to a direct pattern. The Super Tuesday election occurred when Mercury was still in retrograde. Paperwork, travel and challenges with thinking and communicating in a linear or direct way causes frustration, stress and impatience among the population.

 

The Nov. 3 General Election will take place on the last day of another period of Mercury Retrograde. Those whose candidates aren’t elected can always blame that instead of the ineptitude of their candidate.

 

Long days and pleasant nights, have a good weekend.

 

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Readers may contact Tami Jo Nix by emailing tamijonix@gmail.com or following @TamiJoNix on Twitter.

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