After a lifetime of stepping on cracks, my mother has only ever broken her knee; her back remains, thankfully, intact.

Superstition is surely rooted in irrational thought - something I excel in at times - so it's no wonder I have an arsenal.

The belief that two completely unlinked events may have an effect on one another may be hard for some to believe, but although I occasionally like to live on the edge, I'm not taking any chances when it comes to luck.

Even though I've been called a black cat once or twice, I consider myself a lucky gal. Whether the precautions I take based on the unreasonable happenings in my own mind have aided in my survival is anyone's guess, but I do it on a daily basis nonetheless.

I think we all do. Whether we recognize it on a cognitive level or not, when it comes to luck, we all proceed with caution in ways that may make no sense in the grand scheme of things.

I've never been the conventional type, so aside from a knock on wood here and there, I generally don't feed into traditional superstitions. Oh, except for lucky pennies. Look under my radiators and you find about $1,000 in tails-up pennies I've refused to pick up over the years in an attempt to quell any possibility of a bad day (really, it's probably about $1.37; please don't rob me).

Mine, as a whole, much like most of anything in which I'm involved, are pretty ridiculous.

Red light danger

Ever since I was 16, travelling from Elysburg to Shamokin on a daily basis via Route 61, I've believed that if I get the red light at the intersection near Tharptown, something awful will happen.

There is no rhyme or reason to this thought, but it remains with me any time I travel that route.

If the light turns red as I approach it, I will slow down to about 2 mph in an effort to avoid a complete stop.

I know. Really? It makes no sense, but my world continues to spin, so I cannot possibly take the risk of dismissing my actions as coincidental.

Bad luck shirt

I admittedly have way too many clothes and it's soon time to weed out what I don't wear.

Much of those things will be what I refer to as "bad luck shirts."

Again, call me irrational, but if I wear a shirt and end up having a bad day or night, instead of blaming any of the things that transpired in that time frame, I will lay the blame on what I was wearing.

Yes. I have a drawer full of perfectly fine shirts I refuse to wear because I believe they are bad luck.

Ah, but I also have shirts I consider lucky as well, so all the crazy balances out, right?

I also, at one point, fed into the belief that maybe it wasn't just unlucky shirts, but perhaps, unlucky colors.

I didn't wear the color green for about four years after a bad night involving white Russians in college.

Green and I have since made up, but I avoided it like it was Thursday in grade school for a good amount of time based on one incident.


Where do I even begin with 11:11? I remember when I was young, my grandmother would always say, "It's 11:11, make a wish." 'Til this day, I still make those wishes, but 11:11 has come to mean much more, even though I'm still not sure exactly what.

Some view it as an awakening code - a sign the universe is trying to tell you something. I just know I see it everywhere. Consistently on clocks and on my cell phone, but I also find it as my total on receipts, the number on the treadmill when I randomly look down, the mile marker I happen to glance at on the interstate along with a handful of other places.

I don't know exactly what the universe may be trying to convey, but I know when I see that number, I get a good feeling in my heart and I like it.

Rounded numbers

If I were to ever make it onto "The Price is Right's' contestant row, I would surely be the one who bids a crazy number like $647. Never would I bid $650 or $700 just as I would never set my alarm clock for 6 a.m. on the dot.

For whatever reason, I don't like round numbers. My alarms - yes, plural, I set about five - are always set to completely random numbers like 6:16 or 6:22.

I have no idea the origin for any of these thoughts, I just know they are just a few of the many delightfully strange things that go on in this head of mine.

Life may be dictated by fate more than luck, but who's to know what the real deal is?

As a rule, I believe positivity breeds positivity so I have no plans to relocate from the bright side of things, but I don't forsee my superstitious thoughts leaving the vicinity of my mind any time soon.

Do my wishes stand a greater chance of coming true when they are aligned with my own superstitious doctrine? I guess I'll just have to wait and see.

(Jenna Wasakoski is an assistant editor at The News-Item. Her column appears weekly.)