By Brenda Waters

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – More than 21 million people fear Friday the 13th.

But what are superstitions? KDKA’s Brenda Waters asked Dr. David LaPorte, a professor of psychology at IUP.

“Superstitions, in a nutshell, are the belief that you are impacting something that you really have no control over whatsoever,” he explained.

And there seems to be a lot of that going around this day of high superstition.

“I try to stay clear of black cats and going under ladders,” Janet Carroll of Washington, Pa said.

Brenda Waters: “Is this every day or just Friday the 13th?”
Janet Carroll: “I think it’s all the time.”

Lou Miraglia of Oakland had some unusual advice: “It’s not a good day to gamble. I was in the casino business for a long time and Friday the 13th is not a lucky day.”

And don’t forget breaking a mirror. That can earn you 7 years bad luck — maybe double that this Friday.

There’s a lot to avoid on Friday the 13th as myth or superstition has it.

If you cut your hair today, someone in your family may die.

If a funeral procession passes you on this day, you may be the next to go.

If a child is born today, he or she will be unlucky for the rest of their life.

And ships that sail on Friday the 13th will have bad luck.

But then there are those who say, “what is there to fear?”

It’s just another day, says Craig Robinson of the North Side.

“I don’t think about nothing like that. No superstitions.”

Brenda Waters: “What if you saw a black cat right now?”
Craig Robinsons: “I’d be like, ‘it’s a black cat.'”

And Bill Patton had some great advice on how to handle the day.

“I don’t really care, it’s just another day. Don’t let it bother you,” he said.

Just for the record, this year has two Friday the 13ths. There’s another one coming up in December.