Books Paul Hoffman Books by Paul Hoffman Paul Hoffman has written books about: Nonfiction Biography & Memoir Facebook Twitter Email NPR stories about Paul Hoffman Opinion Who's Afraid Of Friday The 13th? March 13, 2009 Psychologists seem to have a fancy word for every conceivable fear known to man or woman. Nyctophobia, fear of darkness. Phagophobia, fear of swallowing. Agyrophobia, fear of crossing the street. Blennophobia, morbid fear of slime. And the phobia de jour, triskaidekaphobia. Commentator Paul Hoffman explains. Who's Afraid Of Friday The 13th? Listen · 3:53 3:53 Toggle more options Download Embed Embed <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/101715052/101891639" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player"> Transcript Opinion Chess It Out! February 20, 2009 Thirty-four-year-old Gata Kamsky is the United States' best hope for chess. The last two Americans to excel in the game suffered mental meltdowns, and understandably so — chess is a rigorous exercise not suited for the faint of mind. But Kamsky, who is in the midst of an eight-game match in Sofia, Bulgaria, has a real shot at playing the world chess champion later this year. That is, if he can keep his wits about him.