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Thirteen (13) Years of Writing Online

John has many years of writing experience in poetry, short fiction and text for children's books. Basically, he just loves to write.

13 Year Anniversary: Image by OpenClipart-Vectors from Pixabay

13 Year Anniversary: Image by OpenClipart-Vectors from Pixabay

13-Year Anniversary on HubPages

I opened my email today and found this from HubPages. I knew it was approaching but wasn't sure exactly when.

“Hi Jodah,

You have hit a pretty impressive milestone—your 13-Year Anniversary on HubPages! Thanks for gracing us with your creativity and unique perspective these past 13 years. HubPages wouldn't be the same without you. Happy Hubbiversary!

Fun fact: Lace is the classic gift for 13-year anniversaries. Is it time for some new curtains or perhaps some cheerful doilies for your home?

Thanks,

HubPages”

I always like to celebrate the milestones here by writing something, so, this is no exception. I hope you find what I put together to be entertaining.

Friday, the day of original sin, the day Jesus died, the day of public hangings, in combination with 13, the number of steps on a gallows, the number of coils of rope in a hangman’s noose, the number of the Death card in the tarot deck, is indubitably designated as a day of portent and doom.

— 4 Seasons in 4 Weeks

Friday 13th: Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Friday 13th: Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Number 13 ~ a Semi-Fictional Tale

I’ve never been overly superstitious. I’ll walk under a ladder every other day of the week, and welcome black cats crossing my path (I even have two.) With my looks, breaking a mirror would be no real surprise and I doubt it would lead to any extra bad luck.

So, no, I’m not superstitious - well, not except for the number 13. I have experienced some concerning events relating to that number, and I am convinced that any connection has to be more than just coincidence.

  • I once owned a house with the address 13 Curran Street. On Friday 13th, 2013 it burned to the ground. All was lost, but fortunately, no one was harmed.
  • My only daughter was 13 when she came down with the dreaded Meningococcal disease. Luckily it was caught early and she survived, but she suffered scarring and permanent skin damage, and hearing loss as a result.
  • My wife was born on the 13th of May, not a Friday, but still number thirteen. She was abused as a child, and now suffers a range of physical and mental conditions including scoliosis, sleep apnoea, fibromyalgia, hyperthyroidism, depression, and anxiety to name a few. How lucky is she?
  • The last two dogs I owned had to be put to sleep at 13 years of age. One cat also died at that age.
  • I once got stuck in a lift between the 12th and 14th floors for over an hour. Like many high-rise buildings, this one had no floor 13. It didn’t make it any luckier though, especially as I suffer from mild claustrophobia.
Elevator buttons: Image by Daniel Nettesheim from Pixabay

Elevator buttons: Image by Daniel Nettesheim from Pixabay

I have tried to push my dread of the number 13 aside and force myself to try to find positives associated with it. I like a very occasional punt on the racehorses (that’s two or three times a year.) There was a thoroughbred race meeting held on Friday the 13th, so I thought I’d look for horses with topical names of bad luck etc. I saw a horse named Black Cat Jack in a race and (you guessed it) it had saddle cloth 13. Quite an omen don’t you think?

I know what you are thinking… the horse finished 13th, right? No, actually, to my surprise, it won! I admit, that temporarily eased my anxiety about the number 13. well, at least for a short while, but one single incident of good luck couldn’t outweigh the rest.

I am now at a stage where I just expect bad things to happen on the 13th or when that number is in any way involved. If I get an unexpected phone call on the 13th for instance, I am 95% certain it will be unwelcome news.

My wife received confirmation of an appointment for an x-ray/scan of a breast abnormality to determine if it was cancerous or benign. The date set was the 13th. I convinced her to change the appointment date. The x-ray came back all clear - just a benign cyst. However, I am certain if she had it done on the original date the news would have been different.

So, here I have provided you with some background, so that you may understand why it is with some trepidation that I received the news informing me that I have reached my 13th Anniversary as a writer on HubPages. But, I have to be optimistic, right? Maybe, I’ll slip into something lacy and celebrate … haha!

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Fun fact: Lace is the classic gift for 13-year anniversaries. Is it time for some new curtains or perhaps some cheerful doilies for your home?

— HubPages

My Thirteen Years at HubPages

Overall, I have enjoyed my 13 years years writing at HubPages. It gave me my start writing online and the confidence to share my poetry and thoughts with a world-wide audience, and that had always been something I struggled with.

I learned a lot from other more experienced writers, and honed my craft to a much better level that it is today. I engaged with like-minded people, and made wonderful lifelong friends. Three times I was fortunate enough to win Hubbie Awards… in 2014, 2016, and 2021. I thank HubPages for running these awards each year as it gives the writers an extra incentive, and is good to receive recognition from our peers that our work is appreciated.

I don’t want this to be another article/essay espousing the “good old days” and how HubPages has been on a downward trajectory for years. I know change is necessary to keep things relevant, and we have to try to see the bigger picture.

A lot of this change has been forced on HubPages by a number of factors:

  • Constant Google algorithm updates
  • Ever changing community/audience demand
  • Takeovers of HubPages by first Maven, then The Arena Group.

Change can be challenging, especially when you don’t see the need. “If it’s not broke don’t fix it!” However, it is also inevitable, and I don’t believe that any company or website wants to fail. We can only hope that everything that has been put in place here, such as the network sites, turns out to be the right move and ultimately results in the long-term success of HubPages.

After all, I still want to be writing here 13 years from now. God willing!

Unlucky 13: Image by Karin Henseler from Pixabay

Unlucky 13: Image by Karin Henseler from Pixabay

13 Years ~ a Poem

Some say 13’s unlucky,

Let’s hope that’s not the case.

I’ve been at HubPages thirteen years,

It is my writing base.


It’s still an easy platform

To write and share our work.

Though ads are taking over,

And we’ve lost most of our perks.


The art of comment’s long since gone,

Many skilful writers left.

Some angry and frustrated

Over constant online theft.


But I’m still here, I’ll stick it out.

They say, “It’s sink or swim.”

With near on 600 articles

It’s too late to chuck it in.


The site has weathered many storms

But still, it stays afloat.

I’ll either go down with the ship,

Or grab the first lifeboat.

© 2022 John Hansen

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