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Add the title numbers. Math geeks will get thirteen. Numerologists will get so much more.

Before I get any answer, I first have to get my calculator.

Stephen King fans will get more still. A novella, a movie, a knock-it-out-of-the-hotel-room paranormal thriller, served with a slice of  Cusack eye candy.

I don’t have Stephen’s phone number, so can’t confirm, but word on the google search has it that the man chose the room number, 1408, because the numbers did indeed add up to the mysterious 13.

Though I do avoid climbing ladders whenever possible, walking under one doesn’t bother me. Black cats are sleek. Broken mirrors are a shame, not a curse. I’m not concerned about exiting an elevator on the 13th floor.

Turns out, the number thirteen is indicative of leadership. Thirteen represents mystery, the unknown element. Thirteen is ‘a number of upheaval, so that new ground can be broken’ (Source).

Interesting, when you consider a jury is made up of 12. The thirteenth individual is the judge, in command of the proceedings. Despite laws and precedent, no trial’s outcome can be predicted. A judge holds power, and there is mystery in that power, for no one can know what evidence he or she may deem admissible. As much faith as we may–or may not–have in our judicial system, much comes down to which judge is assigned to preside over a case.

Jesus had 12 disciples, making him the 13th. Definitely the leader. Definitely a mystery.

Thirteen most likely earned its bad rap because of Friday the 13th of October, 1307, when simultaneous arrest of many of the Knights Templar took place.

But enough about 13. Any movie that allows me to ogle John Cusack for 112 minutes has got to be lucky.

And scary.

Mike Enslin has lost his faith. A writer of great promise, a crucial blow drives him to seek out, and debunk, the paranormal. His journey leads him to room 1408 at New York’s Dolphin Hotel. The room is reportedly haunted, no occupant survives the night. A determined Enslin persists on taking the room, in spite of the hotel’s policy to leave the room empty.

Enslin finds himself in a nightmare more terrifying than the nightmare of losing his young daughter to cancer and losing his marriage soon after. More terrifying, and less escapable.

The most terrifying scene takes place not at the climax of the film, but at the opening. In preparation for what is to come, Enslin must prove his mettle by surviving every writer’s worst nightmare: the dreaded poorly-attended book signing.

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