Thursday, October 29, 2009

The missing office floor - floor 13

I am very probably one of the least superstitious people you will ever meet, this is a fact I am rather proud of, I walk under ladders and regularly laugh in the face of black cats.

I would like to think that most people that most semi-intelligent people also lend superstition very little time and attention, however I increasingly think that perhaps I could be wrong about this.

The last place you would expect to find a fear of absurd superstitions is the business world, however as a little experiment, if you happen to find yourself in an office building in the United States go into the lift and ask to go to level 13... I think you will find there is no level 13.

Check out the picture below, floors in this Chicago office building go from 12 straight to 14(a). You may insist that this is surely just a mistake on the part of the lift manufacturer... unfortunately not. It seems that all over the US businesses are very reluctant to rent out floor space on floor 13's around the country, so in an attempt to shift this "unlucky" floor number many offices are now just calling it the 14th floor... this sort of logic worries me.

(Plus if you are on the "14th floor" and ARE a superstitious indidivual, surely you know exactly what floor you are on - the horrific, deadly, unlucky, haunted one.


Manuel said...

True Ed, but you have to consider 2 things. First, it's the number itself that is considered unlucky, not the virtue of it being the physical 13th floor. Secondly, a lot of people are quite superstitious. Why is this important for say a non-superstitious building manager who makes the call not to have the number 13 present? Well, possible tenants (whether it's an office suite or an apartment whatever) might not be too keen on renting/buying because of the presence of the number. Therefore, having a floored numbered 13 could potentially be bad for business :(

Ed said...

Yeh I understand it all, like I get why its done, I am just disappointed in humankind