Friday Five

Five Things that Scare the Bejesus Out of Me– In honor of October and the human desire to try to frighten ourselves silly

Diving Board
Ever since I was a little kid and taking swimming lessons at summer camp, the diving board is something I did not like. We had to jump off at least once to move on to the next level, but some awful vision of jumping/slipping off the board, cracking my head on the edge while on my way down, and blood gushing from my head wound as I drown gives me the heebie-jeebies when I consider going off the board. Sometimes I can’t even watch the Olympic divers because I wince every time they make a jump.

Sudden Loud Noises/Thunderstorms
A story I heard growing up was, one family reunion, when I was still a baby and a summer thunderstorm started to move in. The noises and lightening scared me so much my Mom thought that I was trying to burrow myself into her chest. I can make it through the thunderstorms alone now, but they still make me extremely uncomfortable. It’s the same with the random explosions or people jumping up behind me. I’m the person jumping three feet in the air every time and my heart rate taking forever to go back to normal. As there are a lot of out of nowhere ridiculously loud noises in Thailand, Thai people get a real kick out of my reaction. I do not.

Paranormal Religious Movies/Books
Blood, guts, and zombies eating brains, I can handle with relative ease. It’s the creepy stuff that raises the goosebumps and hair on my arms. Movies with the man downstairs like The Devil’s Advocate or most Japanese remakes with creepy ghost people like The Ring are the ones I need to watch during the day… and then a happy movie afterwards. I think it’s even more effective in the written word. Being alone at home and most of my free time, it’s really hard to talk myself down off the freaked out ledge.

Willful Ignorance 
We’re moving into the abstract. This has become increasingly evident with the upcoming Presidential election in the U.S. as some voters refuse to stop and assess by a candidate’s goals or policies, but choose to follow what party they belong to. I think the most obvious example of this is people still refusing to believe that President Obama is an American citizen despite all actual evidence. I think any moderately logical person, on either side of the political fence, can figure that one out, but some people just don’t want to. For someone to try so hard not to be properly informed or expand their own horizons and education about the world is, frankly, terrifying to me. How can a country move forward when it is dependent on people to be willing to do so?

Fear Itself
I think it’s healthy and positive to have fears and to experience the emotions that come with it. But I never want those challenges to stop me from doing something I should. The diving board makes me uncomfortable, but that’s never stopped me from trying it. I might take a while to do that thing that makes my heart race, but I will do it. What scares me more is the day I won’t try something, dance in the rain, read a book or watch a movie, because it intimidates me in some way.

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2 thoughts on “Friday Five

  1. a bit of comedy to help conquer your fear about wilful ignorance…and there is allegedly an answer kto it from a Rabbi called Yaakov Rosenblatt in the “Yewish Press”…

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