25 February, 2021

Full Moon Friday The Thirteenth

Do things really take a turn for the worse on the dreaded day? And what if it's a full moon to boot? What do the studies say? The resident doctor has his hands full.

illustration by Jayachandran
Full Moon Friday The Thirteenth
Jack Nicklaus would not play a round of golf without three pennies in his pocket. Michael Jordan always had to wear University of North Carolina boxer shorts under his Chicago Bulls uniform. And Duke Ellington would not play a show, or allow his band members to play a show, wearing anything yellow. For people who have to perform for a living, superstitions seem almost de rigueur. Baseball players, for example, are notoriously superstitious. Wade Boggs, the Boston Red Sox’s former star third baseman, famously insisted on eating chicken before every game. Tommy Lasorda, on the other hand, when he was managing the Los Angeles Dodgers, always ate linguini—with either red clam sauce if his team was facing a right-handed pitcher, or white if up against a lefty. Even in this crowd, however, the New York Mets’ pitcher Turk Wendell seems unusual. For luck during games, he used to wear an animal-fang necklace, refused to wear socks, never stepped on the foul line and brushed his teeth between innings. When he signed his contract for the 1999 season, he insisted that his salary be...

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