Warning: This is a particularly frightful tale, so much so that photos of the aforementioned step will not be shown. Reader discretion is advised.

A few years ago, our bottom step started to crack and lose bits every once in a while. The DH and I, not being terribly handy at cement repair, would occasionally look at it and say things like "we should do something about that" or "maybe it'll last another year."

So in the spring of 2005, Bonnie called a home fix-it guy. For a negotiated sum, he filled the parts of the cement that were missing and sealed it all up, good as new.

Until the cracks appeared three days later.

Blood-curdling scream goes here.

So the handyman came back to fix the cracks with some gooey stuff that looked like mashed up...concrete. Everything looked nice and the children started singing in the streets again.

Then it rained.

Not that rain is bad, but it is when your new bottom step was built in such a way that a self-contained puddle can find a home on it.

Better still, in the winter it forms a little ice rink.

Colder and scarier scream goes here.

The DH and I soon developed methods to avoid splashing or slipping on the bottom step, as did mail carriers, paperboys and Jehovah's witnesses. All was fine in the world until late April, when we noticed the formation of cracks, deep ones, on the step.

We'd point at them and taunt them, but keep a good distance away for fear of causing the first hunk of step to lop off like the arm of a zombie.

Then my father came by last weekend.

While we don't have any documented proof, I know Dad. He's the type of guy to tap at something with his shoe to see if anything happens - a step bully. Past behaviour included the kicking of the old step, a leaning against a loose railing and the prying off of a rotten piece of wood on the back steps.

Do you see a pattern here?

Last Friday evening, the step was in one piece. On Saturday, a day in which Dad had walked up and down the front steps unescorted at least twice, the corners had suddenly "fallen off" the bottom step.

Sure, we could blame gravity, but that's not as much fun.

On Sunday, the DH and I examined the ever-shrinking step and decided that we should look into doing something about it soon.

Then the front half of it collapsed today.

And did anyone else here take a peek at the calendar and notice that Halloween is next week? It just happens to be the one night of the year that having a good bottom step to your house is hugely important.

I'd call Dad, but I know he's outta town. Not to worry though, Mom and Dad are coming over on Friday for a visit. I think a trip to Home Depot may be in order. Bwa ha ha ha...