Saturday, April 12, 2008

"Wasps are bastards" - FP's anxiety playlist

I was hugely entertained to hear Steve Coogan's creation - ex-roadie-turned-pest-controller Tommy Saxondale remark that "wasps are bastards". They have been my phobia since childhood. Just looking at this photo is freaking me out. It's the shape - the venomous dart at the rear end. And also the fact that they can sting at will. A bee has to think really carefully about stinging because it could be the last thing it does. A wasp can sting just for the hell of it. I suppose I'm being unfair as I had indisputable proof some years ago that they aren't really vicious creatures. I stepped on a nest in Denmark and a few half-heartedly came and sank their sting into my ankle. Just on principle. But then later, back at the flat, I took off my pullover and....one flew out. It had been inside my jumper all the time, quite happily keeping warm. The first song in my list has particular resonance for me because of the truly stunning video. Peter Gabriel has always accompanied his songs with beautifully conceived and shot videos, but this one is particularly marvellous. "Digging in the dirt" shows him freaking out in the car due to a bothersome wasp, and then we go back to his childhood trauma which explains his somewhat overexaggerated reaction. Check it out. I'm so scared of the bastards I wouldn't even have dared swat them...I suppose this makes me a (deep breath) spheksophobe!
But what we really want to know is: What's your wasp? What phobias do you have? And do you know the technical term for this fear?


free music

21 comments:

glasshalfempty said...

I'm definitely an arachnaphobe (?) - i.e. hate spiders. It's their unpredictability when they decide to run, I think. Yet I used to like them as a child - my parents once found me in the garden stroking a tarantula. Maybe the resulting telling off started it. Ms glasshalffull doesn't like flying, and when I try to coax her into a trip that needs flying, she says she'll do it when I lie in the bath and let her tip a bucket of spiders over me. She wins the point every time...
But I can still just about stand listening to Boris the spider once a decade ;-)

Frogprincess said...

I sympathise with the flying. It's not the flying in itself but turbulence that gets me. I flew back from Nice on (counts on fingers) Thursday night. It's normally a very pleasant trip as you get to see the snow on the Alps and the landing and take off from/to that bit of land that sticks out into the sea is spectacular. But we started to lurch about somewhere over Lyon and I just went grey. It lasted about 15 minutes and I was counting every one of 'em...I think your analysis of where the arachnaphobia comes from is probably spot on. And you parents did you a favour...

Mnemonic said...

It used to be spiders but then I discovered cockroaches. I sprayed one once (I was living in New York at the time and they have BIG bastards) and accidentally hit a nest. Went out for the evening and when I came home, it was as though someone had fired a giant partypopper all over the apartment. I killed over 100 that night. I moved in with friends until the Exterminator (all silver protective gear and mask) turned up three days later.

After that, flying comes next for fear since the time I was in an emergency landing with total hydraulics failure. The flight attendant in the seat in front of me had her rosary out, It wasn't comforting! You've never seen 30 people so happy to see Gatwick Arrivals as that morning.

TracyK said...

Bridges. Specifically bridges over wide, deep and fast flowing water, especially if I don't know they are there and I don't have time to mentally prepare. I think it dates from when I was about 5: my godmother's husband stood me on a piece of glass in the floor of a restaurant, under which was a churning waterwheel. He'd told me to close me eyes and almost died laughing when I totally freaked. Not, it has to be said, a very nice man.
I also get queasy around seafood and I don't like mushrooms.
My bloke hates: flying, clowns, blood, needles, seafood, swimming in the ocean (specifically not being able to touch the bottom/see what's under the water), heights, crowds, enclosed spaces, especially small lifts, and the texture of fruit (too like flesh). There's two others, I can't remember any more!

FP said...

...all of which makes TracyK a Gephyrophobe (crossing bridges) and Mnemonic is a Katsaridaphobe (from the Greek word for cockroach). I'm sure there isn't a word for all the things which makes TracyK's bloke break out into a cold sweat so I'll settle for calling him an....omniphobe! I share the blood/needles thing. It's not so much a fear. I just faint on the spot. All this is making me think how careful adults should be with wee 'uns. a thoughtless action can instill a fear for life. And grown ups can be such bastards anyway. Check out the Peter Gabriel vid for proof. anyone liking the music?

Mnemonic said...

I forgot the hypodermics; it's not the blood, it's the holes in skin, which is why I don't have pierced ears. I'd pass out every time I tried to put an earring in.

ToffeeBoy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
CaroleBristol said...

I don't like heights. I am terrified that I'll just randomly decide to jump off.

Even writing this makes my skin crawl.

ToffeeBoy said...

Spiders, needles, flying, "Wee Jimmy Krankie" - you name it, I'm scared sh*tless of it!

fp - are you a fan of Peanuts (the Charles Schulz cartoon strip - not the small woody, indehiscent legume (look it up!))? Many of the strips in the 1970s dealt with strange phobias. The ones I can remember are Elurophobia (fear of cats) and my favourtie (fear of being touched) Haphephobia - which, of course, is better then no phobia at all...

I think there was also something about a fear of your tongue drying out - which I can't find on http://phobialist.com/

FP said...

@ Mnemonic - good job there are some nice clip-ons around!
---
@ CaroleBristol. That's a strange one - worried about jumping off. I don't like standing near the edge of the tube platform. Wonder if my sub-conscious is saying the same thing?
---
@ Toffee: It's Lucy isn't it? doesn't she have a pyschiatrists's booth with "The Doctor is IN" on the side? When Charlie Brown goes to see her, she reams off a list of phobias. Yes, I LOVE peanuts. But perhaps if you eat too many... your tongue will dry out...?

ToffeeBoy said...

@ fp - I think you're right about Lucy's role in the phobia thing - I'll have to check it out. I have an embarassingly large number of Peanuts books (more than 100 somewhere in the attic).

@ tracyk - regarding your bloke's fear of swimming in the ocean, I have to say that I'd never thought about the "not being able to touch the bottom/see what's under the water" aspect of it all. I am now - and I'm terrified! Thanks for that...

steenbeck said...

Ordinarily I don't mind spiders, but I don't like to be in a boat (a small one, such as a canoe or kayak) with one. I don't usually mind enclosed spaces, but if they're in spiral staircase form I feel very anxious. And I'm scared of flying, because I had a terrible experience of losing an engine in the middle of the Pacific ocean--I could actually feel the plane losing altitude. We made an emergency landing in San Francisco, but the Pacific Ocean is very large, and it was a long, frightening few hours. So since then I have to have quite a few glasses of wine before I can get on an airplane. I don't like fear--I don't like to feel afraid and I don't like to see other people or even animals afraid. phobiaphobia?

ToffeeBoy said...

toffeegirl has just reminded me of her favourite phobia (and it's not on the phobialist). It's Kneemaphobia - a fear of the knee bending backwards.

Excellent!

FP said...

Donds for Kneemaphobia!! Great one!
Sniff - they're probably all at the book launch by now.

nilpferd said...

Not really anything-phobic, so I'll stick to the music..
I like the music Peter Gabriel makes, although his voice sometimes grates...
The S. Ballet has that hollow sounding 80's production, a nice track, good brass.. underrated band.
The Dutronc reminds me a bit of The The's Beaten Generation.. but that's probably just me...
it and the Benabar are a touch too cabaret for my tastes, though...
The Nine Horses is good- Burnt Friedman is always innovative..
And I'm obviously very into the Björk, the New Order track is equally brilliant.
Pink Floyd gives me a rash though.

Blimpy said...

i don't have any irrational fears. will perverse kinks do instead? or shall i save that for my other blog??

FP said...

@ Nilpferd: thanks for that feedback. The Pink Floyd is the sore thumb of the list. But it's atrack I love and the concept of learning to fly and losing control of the plane was, for me, the epitome of anxiety. Arrrrrgh! And the Spandau Ballet does have some great brasswork on there. I wonder if it's a Trevor Horn production. Scary would know. Where's Scary this week? Probably at the social. Sun's out anyway. You might just get your brunch in the courtyard. But you all have to keep your Pullis on!
---
@ Blimpy - oh please keep kinky perversions for another post. Sounds like absolutely seeuper fun!

steenbeck said...

FP--does the third K. West video that Ejaydee posted below (Sci-Fi Graduation) have footage from 2046? I saw In the Mood for Love, so you think I'd recognize the characters, but... It looks interesting, though, from the clips, so I was curious about what it might be...

severin said...

I'm definitely with FP on the wasp question. Terrified of them. I understand they're a necessary part of the eco-system but I'd be willing to take the risk.

FP said...

Belatedly answering Steenbeck's question - yes that is footage from the film 2046. Well spotted. Great song too.

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