Tuesday, January 27, 2009


“To the man that is afraid, everything rustles.”


I will freely admit it: I do NOT like scary movies. Being creeped out is not my idea of fun. What I consider 'scary' is probably very tame compared to others.

People can get scared by the movie or by the music in the movie. But no, I have to be different. Yes, those things scare me, but I am one step more pathetic then that. I get scared by the commercials! It's true. I will see a commercial come on, be helplessly sucked into watching it, and spend the next week trying not to reproduce its images in my mind. And Sophocles is correct: Everything rustles. I will jump ten feet if the furnace kicks in, start sweating when a book falls off my desk, and panic when I think I see movement in the middle of the night. Laugh all you want, but it's the honest truth.

But in all seriousness, Sophocles probably didn't mean fear of movies or scary images. My other interpretation of this quote is fear of being found out. You feel like every comment everyone makes is in reference to your hidden thoughts or actions. One example of this is the fear of police cars. Every time I see a police car, I slow down, nervously watch my rear view window to see if it follows, and speed up again when I'm further down the road. I could be going the speed limit and still slow down. That's a pretty common anxiety since no one wants a ticket. One other example could be when you've done something wrong, like telling someone's secrets to another person. Every time a reference is made about that person, or situation, you get nervous and hope the other person doesn't find out. Suddenly, every look has a double meaning, every comment seems directed at you, and "everything rustles". Eventually, in that situation, I would feel so bad about it that I would tell my friend about my big mouth.

So, I think that even though Sophocles lived a long time ago, he pretty much nailed it on the head. When afraid, whether it be of movies, people, or situations, it is easy to become jumpy over everything. Just remember, if you haven't done anything wrong, you shouldn't be worried. If you did do something wrong, then it's up to you to correct it. And if it's over something benign, like a scary movie, try to not let people pick on you too much.

1 comment:

  1. I cannot tell you how much I laughed at the first two paragraphs of this post--not at your expense--but at our expense. I am terrified every moment of every scary (in my eyes) movie or commercial that I have ever seen. I have been suckered into watching "The Ring" by my older brother who feeds off of my terror and after watching that dreadful movie, I feared for my life, believing that Samara was going to come out of my television. I completely sympathize with your fear! And on another note, I do not understand why many pay to make themselves scared!