The small town where I have recently landed is ugly and beautiful. Walk down the main street: there are a few old gems like an ancient and glorious Masonic Hall, now home to evangelicals. Several boarded up stores, ugly as can be, and some small town cafes: one for Giants fans, specializing in breakfast, pancakes and pennants all over the joint, one Mexican taqueria, one family pasta palace with red and white checkered table cloths and cheap chianti, and an old-school diner for burgers....more
Posts Tagged: fear
It is easy to forget that fear isn’t a thing—it’s just a feeling to which we have attached a word. It’s a powerful feeling, however, It is so powerful that if I sit in my living room and imagine a killer is waiting for me outside my door, and if I begin to believe what I am imagining, I will feel the alarm bells of panic within me as if I could actually see the killer’s shadow in my window.
Eventually the bruises and the rage faded, but not the fear. The fear remained. An awful withering dread that coiled around my bowels — that followed me into my dreams.
Author Junot Diaz writes about the first time he got beat up, how it created a debilitating fear that stayed with him for years, and how he moved past it....more
McGraw’s studies have led him to endorse something called the benign-violation theory, which holds that “humor only occurs when something seems wrong, unsettling, or threatening (i.e., a violation), but simultaneously seems okay, acceptable, or safe (i.e., benign.)” The form this takes in most jokes and comic situations is to begin with the threat of a violation of some sort and save the uneasiness this causes by its turning benign at its end.
…beyond any fear is a greater circumambient fear, a terror, that one will be insufficiently able to hold that fear. That if the stimulus is present and ongoing, unchecked, one might fall apart, come to pieces, in her faculties disintegrate.
Writer Bryan Blanchfield was attacked by his family dog at age nine, so viciously that a surgeon had to be flown in to repair his mutilated face....more