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Gordon's D-Zone Arcive (2006-2014)

Sunday, June 10, 2007

THE SHAPE OF FEAR

I can’t say that I haven’t had my fair share of fears as I grew up. There were terrible monsters and ‘creatures’ out there to get me when I was asleep. I would like to think that I have outgrown most of these fears now and that I don’t need to hold my furry soft toy for me to sleep...

Left: cartoon of an odd looking ball with fangs and an open mouth. Courtesy of Jangeltun from StockXpert


Yet, these monsters that we are made to fear may still haunt us. Or rather what they represent to us that are the stuff of fear … it’s not that we would have a problem with a goblin visiting us or even an alien coming to say ‘hi!’ that gives us sleepless nights but the things that they might do to us that sends shivers down our spine ... after all, they could Torture us or even kill us, can’t they

But then again, what about the ‘monsters’ we are made to fear? Aren’t they almost always physically different, than the rest? Or even have different ways of living their life? Indeed, excepting for modern stories like Shrek, the ugly and ‘deformed’ (how I hate that word), is synonymous with evil and with curses. And it doesn’t take a lot of logic, as a boy, to think you’re also some kind of odd ‘creature’… well, your legs that only bend at approx. 90 degrees and well your hands not exactly straight … you start wondering… perhaps… I am sinister after all… The fear I had wasn’t s much as of the ‘monsters’ outside but the ‘monster’ that might be within me.

I was particularly struck by the tale of Rumpelstiltzkin – I don’t know why – perhaps it’s because it was one of the fairy tales that had the most colourful illustrations. The fact remained that there were things that physically I thought I had in common with the creature. I grew out of it eventually but I guess part of me was marked by the message that I was receiving implicitly through these tales. That good and evil are not simply based on actions but on physical appearance. That it’s not really what people say that matters but whether they are beautiful or smart.


The shape of fear is projected into people, who are to be feared to some extent. Whether it’s for what they represent, or who we think they are, fear takes a shape which distances us from who they really are. So, I become, as a well intentioned man once described me, ‘someone who us burdened by my cross’. I am tempted to ask the whereabouts of the cross, but I know he meant the fact that I was not fully mobile… and because I’m burdened by my ‘cross’, other people should think me brae… or even very brave. Yes, I have had my fair share of situations where my life was on the line. But I only did my best to go on because I knew that I didn’t have much choice.

After all, I always forget to bring my magic potions in emergencies. No, seriously, I don’t use magic powers any more… it got me in this mess of a world after all. There it goes again. My impish writing hand! But then, people have thought stranger things of me. But I’ll keep that for future posts…




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