Q&A: grab bag

From Jim:

“You’re trapped in a room with Weird Al, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and Buddy Holly, and only three chairs. Who do you try to get a chair away from, and why?”

Buddy Holly, hands down. I don’t have much use for his music at all. However, it wouldn’t really be a challenge because both Buddy Holly and Mozart are way dead. I could arrange their desiccated remains in the corner or something. Maybe I’d pick on Weird Al for the hell of it.

From Mike:

“What are the fears that paralyze you?”

Goodness. Physically paralyze me? I’d have to say claustrophobia. I am the singlemost claustrophobic person I have ever met, but that’s not exactly saying much, because I’m not sure people really advertise that, or chat about it casually at parties. However, when I do discuss it with people, they usually say, “Wow, how do you handle that?”

Flying itself doesn’t bother me – the hurtling through the air miles and miles from the surface of the planet part, I mean – but I am adamant about having an aisle seat whenever possible, due to my claustrophobia. The sheer fact that I am enclosed in a space and am unable to leave it if need be bothers me quite a bit, but I have spent years learning how to master my fear so I am functional enough to travel. Trains are slightly easier for me to deal with, because (in my mind) I can jump off if I need to, and possibly survive.

Elevators are also difficult. I prefer to take the stairs, or escalators. Being trapped in an elevator is my most irrational fear. I avoid closets during games of hide-and-seek. Narrow hallways unnerve me; sleeping bags merely annoy me. Telephone booths are all right, since I can see out of them.

I have no idea where this fear arose, except I have a vivid memory of screaming bloody murder as a very young girl because during a game of hide-and-seek I was locked in a closet in the dark. At night. Alone. By a horrible little boy I will never forgive. I bruised and scraped myself up trying to get out, and lost my voice screaming. Thank goodness the nightmares have ceased.

So far as metaphorical paralysis goes, my greatest fear is that I will never again love and be in love with someone who loves and is in love with me. This is a fear because of the uncertainty of it; if I were convinced that it would just never happen again, I could deal with that. It would depress me beyond measure, but I could deal with it.

I try not to think about this very much, instead trusting my heart to heal and be open once more, someday.

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