Once, my sister-in-law told me about her secret worry. (I have lots of sisters-in-law, so, sister-in-law du jour, your secret is still safe with me – if you don’t count me blabbing it on my blog, which I obviously don’t count. Do you? Of course you don’t.) Anyway, she said she worried that she’d accidentally stick her hand down the garbage disposal. While it was running. At first I was perplexed. Why would she ever do that? And why would she worry about it? She explained that she worried precisely because she was over-careful every time she turned on the garbage disposal. She consciously told herself, “Don’t don’t don’t stick your hand down there” and she worried that in her obsession she’d get confused and her brain would instead cut her message short and it would say to her “Stick your hand down there.” And, she would be so distracted/frazzled/unconscious that she would do just that.
Ridiculous? Well . . . not until I remembered my own weird worry. I worry that I will accidentally put diesel fuel into my car instead of gasoline, thereby ruining my car, my life, and maybe, somehow, the world. I pull into service stations and plainly see the “Diesel” signs in red. Even though I trust my ability to read, I worry that I am somehow misunderstanding something. I even understand that the nozzles are different, that they probably wouldn’t fit – but I worry that I would make the nozzle fit, oh, I would. After I drive past the diesel pump, I stare at my pump’s gas choices before making any dire mistakes. Regular, super, premium – yes, this is gas. I slide the nozzle into the gas tank opening – it fits easily and well. But, before I squeeze the trigger, I look wildly around. Where’s the diesel, again? Where where where . . . oh, there. But, wait, maybe there are two pumps? No, my pump says regular, super, premium. This is gas. It is, it is. Eventually, I fill the tank, pay my $50 (gulp) and drive away – a little apprehensively for the first few blocks . . . just in case my car explodes.
Do you have a weird worry? Something that doesn’t require therapy but is an interesting character trait you wouldn’t mind trading away? Share, please!