A one-time school project gone terribly, terribly wrong.

30 July 2007

Interview Question Three

Continuing my remote interview with Azahar

3. What is your greatest fear?

I suppose I'd have to start with "success". Not that I fear success itself so much, but that I fear failure so much that I'll procrastinate, delay, and drag out the process of doing anything at all for as long as possible to avoid that final moment when the project is complete and must be judged a success or a failure.

For example, my Nash Metropolitan has been undergoing "restoration" for some fifteen years now, and has been running for less than half of that time. It sits in the garage waiting for my attention ... but it seems there's always something else I have to give my attention to first.

I think that's why I like acting. There's no possibility of delay. Taking on a role is as irrevocable as jumping from an airplane. Assuming you don't back out, you will one day find yourself blinking in the bright lights and wondering if there's anyone out there in the glare, watching you. And you'll give your best performance regardless.

Related fears:
Loss. I think it's related to the success thing. Loss = failure. I am particularly miserable about the violent loss of friendships--and I have a whole 'nother post coming about that.

Exposure: I always feel like a bit of a fraud, no matter how sincere, authoritative, or truthful I am. I feel that I throw up a screen of bull$#!7 to conceal that, with the net effect that I look guiltier than I actually am. Thus people suspect me of being a bit of a fraud, I feel like one, and the cycle continues ...

Worst everyday fear:
Air travel. I intensely dislike riding in airplanes. Partly because I took physics 101 from a man who started his professional career in the insurance industry.

Call me crazy if you like. But why the hell do they give us flotation vests instead of parachutes? The number of wide-bodies jets that have made successful landings on water is zero. Whereas when you thunder in from 23,000 feet you get about two minutes to appreciate the view expanding to fill the window. Minutes that could usefully be employed in getting the £µ©λ out of the plane, no? I'll be happy with air travel when every aircraft has gullwing fuselage and ejection seats. But until 230 screaming victims are more expensive than those features, we have to put up with tin cans, I guess.

But don't strap me into an aluminium tube, helpless to do anything, and tell me to "enjoy the flight".


At 5:24 a.m., Anonymous archie said...

I also suffer from fraudulance. Lately it rears its unwelcome head every time my blog hits are down. Ahh, my conscience tells me - you've been found out - you're a blogging failure!

As for flying - I HATE IT - but have to indulge every now and then. From 35,000 feet there would be around 4 minutes of absolute terror. I don't need that thought.

At 11:28 a.m., Blogger Metro said...

It's interesting. Since posting the last three items (above this one) my hits have jumped about five percent. Odd, but pleasant.

Of course, my stats plummeted a few weeks ago when whatever had drawn them to the pictures of Christina Aguilera in handcuffs wore off.

At 6:21 a.m., Anonymous azahar said...

Isn't most fear of success actually a fear of failure? Though it could also be said that once one does succeed then one has to change according to their new status. And most people find change frightening.

Fear of flying - TOTALLY get you on that one! I'm pretty much a dribbling basketcase by the time I get strapped into my seat - gaaa! Only once in my life this didn't happen, many years ago. I was taking my then 9-year-old brother to Toronto (from Winnipeg) on an early morning flight and suddenly Joe told me he was afraid of flying. So I went straight into Big Sister mode and told him there was absolutely nothing at all to worry about and chatted non-stop with him during the flight. Quite amazing. Have never been able to do that for myself, either before or since.

At 12:48 p.m., Blogger Metro said...

I was on a plane from England on about September 17th, 2001 (having arrived in London on the 10th).

I was strapped in, and my mind was slowly accelerating in that "try-not-to-think-the-words-'crumpled wreckage strewn across ...'" way, when I noticed a boy of about seven looking very grave. I heard him tell his mother in a quiet voice that he was scared.

I was able to bottle it all up for most of the flight.


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