Step Over, Step Back

Main piece:

If you step over somebody, they will stop growing until you step backwards over them in the same way you stepped over them in the first place.


Background information (Why does the informant know or like this piece? Where or who did they learn it from? What does it mean to them?):

I don’t remember why I know this, I think my parents told me at some point. Do I like it? Its cute, that’s it. I learned it at home, my parents just told me not to. It’s cool. It becomes a problem in college when people constantly step over you when you’re laying down, and you have to explain this weird Indian custom.


Context (When or where would this be performed? Under what circumstance?):

It would just happen if you’re stepped over. If someone steps over any part of your body, you have to do the ritual. I abide by it, oh yeah.


Personal Analysis:

I have been personally involved in this act of folk belief. I made the mistake of stepping over Ankur, and he chased me down until I stepped backwards over him. He is a rather tall man, over 6 feet, so he shouldn’t be too worried about not growing anymore. He doesn’t need to get any taller!


This tradition is similar to a Russian tradition:

“It is often considered taboo to step over people, or parts of their body, who are on the ground. It is often said that it will prevent the person from growing (if they are not fully grown already). It is better to politely ask the person to move or to find a way around them. If one accidentally steps over a person (or people), it is sometimes standard to step backwards over them.”

“Russian Traditions and Superstitions.” Weird Russia. Weird Russia, 31 Aug. 2014. Web. 28 Apr. 2016.