Place item was collected
Point of Discovery/Informant Bio
I was born in Lewiston Utah and spent most of my childhood in Cache Valley until I moved with my family to Monticello Utah before my junior year of high school. During my teenage years I worked several farm and landscaping jobs. After graduating high school, I served a two-year LDS mission in the Philippines and then attended a single semester of school at BYU-Idaho before marrying a Logan girl and moving to Logan to continue school at USU.
The context of this legend is back when I was in second grade. I attended Lewiston Elementary School and had two best friends, Shane and Ben, who I played with every day at recess and during lunchtime. We had been good friends for about a year at the time the legend began.
When I was in second grade I remember my friend Ben informing myself and our other good friend Shane that the second and second to last step of every stairway was extremely bad luck and that horrible things would happen if we knowingly step on them. The three of us embraced this new knowledge with utmost severity and habitually jumped over the second and second to last step of every staircase. This habit became so strong in my daily routine that I would skip those evil steps everywhere for years to come. Even now, when the memory of this legend comes to my mind, I skip the necessary steps to avoid misfortune.
Shane, Ben, and myself took this legend to be absolute fact and never even joked about stepping on the second and second to last steps. After learning about the possible consequences of doing so, we maintained the habit of skipping the steps without even talking about the practice as if to avoid any negative consequences that might come from even speaking about it.
Intro to Folklore
Semester and year
G2: Bad Luck
Tanner, Jon, "Skipping the Second Step" (2017). USU Student Folklore Fieldwork. Paper 54.