Saturday, December 09, 2006


I have met a lot of people with different fears over the years. It seems that there is a big difference between not liking something for various reasons and having a down right fear of them.

I know it is nearly impossible to cure anyone of a fear. People normally do not search for a cure for their fears unless it is something like flying and their living depends on them spending a lot of time in the air. The best one can do is to be understanding and sensitive.

I was not aware of my wife’s fear of caves and being underground until we came out of the Seattle Underground Tour. She also fears knives and sword fights, so I didn’t invite her to watch the Kill Bill films with me.

This all made me think about my fears, which I couldn’t really find any. I’m not afraid of heights, though I prefer not leaving the ground, but I have spent a lot of time doing roofing on my house and on the top of a thirty-foot ladder with a chain saw cutting limbs of spruce and hemlock trees. I’m not afraid of drowning, though I have come close to it on several occasions.

Could it be I am totally fearless? I am not, and I recently faced a fear that I have had ever since I could walk. I wrote about going to Macy’s recently, and one thing that I have always had a fear of is escalators. I am not so fearful that I take the stairs, but I am so uneasy getting on them. I closely inspect the hem of my pants to make sure they aren’t dragging on the floor. I make sure my shoe laces aren’t touching the ground (but now I wear Birks full-time.) I stay attentive and transfixed on their teeth (as I see them) and I remain motionless through out the ride. When it is time to get off I bound over the last few feet of the ride. It must be quite a sight.

Out of all the things my lizard brain could fear, I end up fearing escalators. I guess that’s pretty good since I rarely ever find myself needing to use one.


Blogger Syd said...

I went through a period after my brother died where I feared nothing. Thankfully, I realized how detrimental that was to my health. Now I'm back to fearing the normal things like snakes and submarines.

6:53 PM  
Blogger Mel said...

I have a mild aversion to escalators myself, but I've managed to develop a callus over it, since almost everywhere I go, there they are.
The one that I used to be afraid of, that I got over with a shock, was bridges. One weekend my family went to the coast; my folks decided to go over the (Megalar? Meglar?) Astoria Bridge, and just as we were getting to the end, my face taut and shiny with fear, my little brother yelled in my face, "THE BRIDGE IS FALLING!"
At the same time he did that , we went over a little dip in the road; I thought we were dying, every one of us. I shrieked, and almost peed my pants.
My brother got in deep shit, and I developed my system of creating calluses over my fears. Now I still don't like dealing with bridges, but I live in Portland, where there are 87 bridges, for fuck's sake. I had to LEARN to deal.

7:10 PM  
Blogger The Guy Who Writes This said...

Syd, please tell me the submarine is a Freudian metaphor. If not how could you possibly be afraid of submarines? This has to be a good story.

Mel, the Astoria/Megler Bridge. I only fear that bridge when the wind picks up to 50+mph, but you are right sometimes that is a fearful 4 miles. Funny thing I also wonder every time I drive that bridge, "What would happen if an earthquake hit right now?"

I'm going to have an article about the kayaker's view of that bridge one of these days. There's some interesting stuff you never see unless you are on the water under it.

Steel grate bridges can freak one out as well, especially as a pedestrian or if on a bike. It's like a cattle guard for humans.

9:32 PM  
Blogger Zoe said...

I don't think that is a completely irrational fear, as far as fears go. I mean you could be afraid of fish. I am also really uneasy about elevators. I take the stairs when possible.

6:33 PM  
Blogger The Guy Who Writes This said...

I saw your post on fish. Damn, be brave girl, and you may want to avoid Oregon because there's fish on every god damned thing out here. Can't get away from it.

I still want to hear what's up with Syd and the submarine. Think she was talking about a sandwich?

10:08 PM  
Blogger Mom of Three said...

I HATEHATEHATEHATEHATE scorpions. An ex-boyfriend of mine had one in his bedroom (in a tank, but that didn't help me) and that thing was scary! They look painful just looking at them!

11:38 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home