My first & hopefully not last contingent TSA offer turns out to be from Nantucket Island. I know what you’re thinking. It’s probably the first thing I was thinking. Wings, right? Maybe you’re too young. Maybe you still here “Nantucket Island” & think Moby Dick.

Thanks to a childhood in front of a television, my first go-to reference is a sitcom. You know, the one you watched because Tom Church & Tony Shalhoub were laugh-out-loud funny. Maybe you’d add David Schramm to that list, he certainly was hysterical, he does deserve a nod, but still, it was Lowell & Antonio that really made the show.

Maybe that’s not the right idea, maybe that’s not the right mentality to look at a possible job opportunity at the Nantucket airport. Maybe Moby Dick would be better.

Don’t worry, I’m not looking at this thinking I will finally have the opportunity to live in a sit-com world. As far as dreams go it’s right up there with living in a cartoon. God, I would love to be a cartoon character. Or living in a musical. Wouldn’t it be great if people randomly burst into song? I bet you the suicide rate for musical worlds is through the roof. It’s fun at first, but quickly turns dark.

Yeah, that’s not the attitude I’m taking into Nantucket, if the contingent offer becomes a real offer.

Part of it, I’ll be honest, is the whole history thing. I hate finding my way around Boston, but I do love that city & Nantucket has a long history too. But that is a small part.

The larger part is fear. I want to talk about fear. Rational fear.

Rational Fear: A fear that has been passed down genetically to keep you from doing something stupid.

I am afraid that Nantucket will be my only offer & I am afraid of islands.

Well, it’s not actually islands, it’s really more the water that surrounds them. Water is a pretty big fear of mine. Pools aren’t that bad, but natural bodies of water, they kind of get to me, especially when they are, you know, oceans that can swallow you whole.

In water you are surrounded by an all encompassing matter that cuts off your ability to breath. It is that simple. I’m also slightly claustrophobic & I think that plays into it.

The claustrophobia comes from being locked in a closet for somewhere around ten hours. No, mom & dad didn’t do it. I totally did it to myself. Latch Key kid. Ten-years-old, mom & dad at work. These things happen…I cleaned up the mess myself. Mom & dad were understanding, but I was kicking myself for my own stupidity.

The claustrophobia has something to do with it, but the fear of water predates it. I don’t remember this, but when I was a little kid mom thought it would be a great idea to take me to the YMCA for mother-toddler swimming lessons.

I ripped the hair right out of her head the moment she took me into the pool & that was the end of any further swimming lesson. It is also the reason I think fear can be genetic, at that age, I had no past experiences that would lead me to a fear of water.

I don’t remember it, but mom does. Apparently I took out a handful of her hair in an effort to climb on top of her and make it to safety.

I think a fear of large bodies of water, Thalassophobia, is a rational fear. It can kill you.

There are many phobias that I think are rational & possibly passed down genetically.

I also suffer from Ophidiophobia. That’s the fear of snakes.

I was on a nature hike with a girlfriend in South Carolina. She saw a snake & took a moment to watch it. She asked me “what type of snake do you think this is?”

By the time she finished her sentence, I was back at the car trying not to wet myself. There were snakes on that trail, which meant that I was certainly not going to be on that trail.

Ophidiophobia is a logical fear. Back in the day, when we were all living in Africa, the people with Ophidiophobia probably had a higher life expectancy.

If you think about it, the early Homo Whatevers with the common sense to stay away from snakes were likely to live long enough to pass on their genetic material for the next generation to eventually evolve into Homo Sapiens that also had the common sense to stay the hell away from things that could deliver an agonizing death.

Not being afraid of snakes, in my opinion, is a mental disorder. The idiots that think they are beautiful & pets are also the same idiots that would probably pick them up in the wild. It’s amazing that evolution didn’t breed them into extinction.

Joe Australopithecus that sees a viper & thinks that maybe it might want to be friends isn’t going to last much longer is he?

Ophidiophobia saves lives.

So does Arachnophobia. When you see a spider, kill it. They are not on the verge of extinction & it’s probably a good idea. It could be a common house spider, it could be a Brown Recluse. You don’t know for sure, do you & in either case, if it bites you, it’s either going to hurt or itch.

Either way, kill it. Arachnophobia has probably saved a few early homo lives &, like Ophidiophobia, was passed down through evolution & probably saved a few modern human lives as well. I’d put that on my list of rational fears.

Chiroptophobia, fear of bats. Also rational. Bats are reservoirs for things like rabies & Ebola & MERS-CoV. Bats can get you pretty sick. It is a very rational thing to fear things that can make you sick & die.

But then, if you were afraid of bats because they could get you sick, that might qualify as Mysophobia. Either way, the fear of germs seems pretty rational.

Rational Fear: A fear that has been passed down genetically to keep you from doing something stupid.

Traumatophobia, the fear of war, is something that, if we were smart, we would ALL suffer from. If the human race suffered from Traumatophobia we would have a much higher probability of survival as a species. Especially now that we can kill everything on earth.

Hoplophobia, fear of weapons, again, the world would be a better place if we all suffered from that. That would be a perfectly rational fear.

Capnophobia, a fear of air pollution is also a reasonable & rational fear that should be required for our species to survive.

Genophobia is an example of an irrational fear. Genophobia is the fear of rape. Fear often prevents people from doing things. In the case of Genophobia it is clearly not the rapist that suffers from it. If the victim has Genophobia he or she probably won’t defend themselves. What they should feel is an overwhelming urge to beat their attacker to a pulp. Fear doesn’t really trigger that instinct. Hate does. Hate & anger would be the rational emotion in that instance.

Genophobia has also been defined as a fear of sex. Totally irrational. Our species would have zero life expectancy if everyone suffered from Genophobia.

Coulrophobia is the fear of clowns. I can understand that in that there have been some spooky clowns lately. But otherwise, year, totally unnecessary fear. What you are doing is fearing entertainment.

Friggatriskaidekaphobia is a phobia that I can’t pronounce which raises fear in anyone that has Sesquipedalophobia & that’s just an unfortunate word isn’t it?

Melissophobia, the fear of bees, is a confused fear. It really should be wasps that you’re afraid of, shouldn’t it?

Acrophobia is the fear of high places. I don’t suffer from it. I suffer from claustrophobia. Acrophobia is sort of the opposite of claustrophobia. Still, my brain doesn’t work in certain high instances.

I can be high & I’m fine with it. I can sit on a roof at night, drink a beer & gaze down at the city. I can do the same on a mountain cliff…only without the beer & the only issue I have with a ski-lift is getting off of it, still haven’t figured out how to do that gracefully.

But…you put me in the Plexiglas observation deck in the SEARS Tower, my legs give out from under me. It’s not a fear response, at least I don’t think. The overwhelming emotion there is embarrassment.

I just look down & my brain knows I’m on something solid but my body insists that, no, I’m falling. The next thing I know I have to crawl off the deck because my legs refuse to allow me to stand.

Like I said, not fear, embarrassment.

Acrophobia is a perfectly rational fear. Falls like that will kill you. The people that are Acrophobic do not have a problem. They are very sane. It’s people like me, that do not have a fear of high places who have a mental disorder.

My mother suffers from Anglophobia, but she is Irish, so that might be a rational fear, but only if you’re Irish…or Indian…or Australian…that might just be a rational fear.

There is an anti-government fear that is sweeping the nation. That fear is dangerous. We’ve seen what happens in chaos. Chaos increases the number of rational fears. It’s called Politicophobia & that is a fear that can do some real damage to you.

Hoplophobia, nope, the people that suffer from Politicophobia, unfortunately do not have that condition as well & we have the body count.

Many of them do, however, also suffer from Papaphobia, fear of the Pope & Xenophobia, fear of foreigners. As well as Islamophobia, Judeophobia, Negrophobia, Russophobia, & Sinophobia. There are a lot of phobias that generally accompany the fear of the government aren’t there?

Fear of government, that’s caused a few mass shootings lately, hasn’t it?

I mean, the guy that shoot up the nursing home & killed all the Gentiles in an attempt to kill Jews, he was afraid of Big-Government wasn’t he? He had Politicophobia as well as Judeophobia.

The Libertarians are afraid of government & the extreme edge of their crowd, which is actually growing in numbers, quotes the same anti-Semitic theories that can be found if you visit the American Nazi Party’s homepage. They also hold the same views about fluoride, FEMA, & the Catholic Church.

The only difference is that the American Nazi Party is openly racist & proud of it & the fringe conspiracy mongering Libertarians are closeted about it & yet, oddly, pro Gay Marriage. Good for them…sort of.

Either way, fear of government is a potentially dangerous thing. Two cops were killed & a Wal-Mart was shot up in Vegas by people afraid of the government & suffered from the myriad of other phobias that seem to accompany it.

Fear of Government is itself not a rational fear. Governments can be changed, especially in a country like the US, where we have a peaceful revolution every two-to-four Novembers.

But let’s not forget the mother of all irrational fears. That’s right Keanuphobia. There is nothing to fear there. I have it on very good authority that Keanu Reeves is a very kind-hearted, warm, & welcoming individual.


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