When I was in college, I had this roommate named Janet. She had a sort of fearlessness about her that I always admired — she’d kill all the spiders in our apartment; she’d investigate strange sounds outside; she’d confront our landlord who always seemed to be pulling some kind of crazy didn’t-you-borrow-my-vacuum-cleaner scheme.
But there was one thing Janet was terrified of: She hated those “pop” containers that pressurized dough comes in. She would call one of us roommates from all the way in another room to come open them for her.
She hated the ones that required a spoon to press against the seam, but she especially hated the ones that would just “pop” as you undid the paper. Because — even though she could kill a spider like nobody’s business — she couldn’t stand the unpredictability of … croissant rolls, I guess. I thought it was hilarious. But I peeled them all the time for her. Because it was one thing I wasn’t afraid of.
I suppose we all have strange, inexplicable fears, and it’s an especially beautiful thing when you’re paired up with someone who can handle yours. Janet killed my spiders and I opened her jumbo biscuits. I had a roommate before her who was terrified of birds, so we always ate inside at the cafeteria. Superman hates clowns, so, needless to say, my children have never been to a circus.
What are your irrational fears? Or the seemingly silly things that can make your heart start pounding at an unpredictable pace? Here are my top five:
- Any kind of strange knocking or whirling sound coming from my car
- Rest-stop bathrooms with those concrete walls and weird, metallic sinks
- Any kind of strange sound coming from downstairs when we’re sleeping (I guess that’s normal, but I’ll lay there and let my heart race rather than go investigate.)
- Dentists and doctors
What about you?