Monday, June 18, 2007

So Many Fears

There’s a lot I worry about. Even when things are going well for my family and friends, there will be an e-mail with a map allowing me to unearth the exact location of sex offenders living in my neighborhood. This precipitated the last rash of nervousness, that particular worry moving to a back burner when I read how infrequently airlines clean the blankets they now so rarely provide, which was almost immediately overshadowed by the story on home grown terrorists all around us. I still haven’t forgotten the images revealed on television with a particular light that finds bodily fluids lurking all over hotel rooms (and not just of the Motel 6 variety)or the dangers posed by walking on New York streets due to faulty Con Ed wiring.

Those are just my personal anxieties, potential disasters that occupy a portion of my brain (I’m not sure if it's right or left side). I also don’t know if they’re in the same side as the horror I experience in response to the existing atrocities -- the genocide in Darfur, fighting in Gaza, global warming, trafficking of women, war in Iraq, our leaders, to name a few. But wherever these fears are stored, I suspect they’re in the space that was once occupied by actors' names, making it impossible for me to finish a sentence without saying, “the one who was in the movie with the guy done by the director who’d had that big hit, oh you know”.

This brings me to one of my most overriding concerns: memory loss. AOL posted a story last night that a test has been developed to test for Alzheimer’s. While reading that, in the background I heard a documentary on TV with the terrifying statistic about the percentage of people who will contract the disease. They maintained that if they find a way to put it off for five years, 50% less of the population will have it, and if they could postpone it for ten years, almost nobody would have it as it generally affects the last ten years of your life.

It would be so much easier if our fears would vanish from where they get embedded, instead of the names of movie stars.

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