The real Little Green Man from Mars is alive and well and living in Appalachia.

The Truth Is a Lone Assassin by Jonco Bugos

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Scare Tactics

Living on planet Earth is a pretty scary experience. I think it's probably always been that way and no doubt it always will be a dangerous and unfriendly place for the most part. I mean, you never really know when a bomb is going to drop out the sky on you or when some crazy dictator with a big rocket might decide that today is your day. People get held up on sidewalks in most big cities these days and your local convenience store isn't so convenient anymore when you're walking in on a customer with a gun shoved into the clerk's face and no place to go but the interstate. Then his problems become your problems and you wind up on the six o'clock news either dead or sealed in duct tape awaiting your fate. So, why, I ask myself, with all these regular, scary, day-to-day happenings at their disposal, why do Earthlings have to scare the pants of themselves by making up asinine scary beliefs to have to worry about?

For example, why would anyone in their right mind fuss over whether or not it's bad luck for a black cat to cross your path? Cats are free to walk just about anyplace because, for the most part, they're not the large, territorial and often vicious carnivores that dogs are. So, if a black cat walks in front of you on the sidewalk, who gives a shit? Don't start looking over your shoulder for inevitable trouble. Just go about your business and be glad that the kitty cat is not a Great Dane that hasn't been fed recently.

And, I don't know, maybe I'm just being practical, but it seems to me that if you break a mirror you should be more concerned about cleaning up the pieces before anyone gets cut and not very interested in what terrible fate may befall you for the next seven years. Besides, it's fairly easy to prioritize your fears if the mirror you broke is not your own and especially if it belongs to someone a lot bigger than you. In that case, whether you opt for worrying about the future performance of your stock portfolio or immediately focus your attention on locating the nearest exit is pretty much a no-brainer.

And why in the hell should people make the effort to throw salt over their shoulder after spilling it in the first place? It seems to me that your luck is going to be a lot better if you only have one mess to clean up instead of two. On the other hand, not walking under a ladder makes perfect sense to me when there's a lot more space to walk in that's not under a ladder. In this case, I'm not so much concerned about the possibility that anyone who walks under a ladder might be inviting bad luck because people who walk under ladders instead of anywhere else are simply asking for the sky to fall on them anyway. But, if it did, they'd probably be stupid enough to think it was just raining.