: a fearsome list :





The U.S. is a freaked out nation of worriers. And every year the Chapman Survey of American Fears pins down exactly what makes us so jittery. A representative sampling of 1,500 respondents was presented with an alarming list of possibilities and asked to rate them on a four-point scale.

Corruption of government officials provoked the highest levels of fear. Followed by technology, with cyber terrorism and corporate tracking of personal data, and the like. Man-made disasters, terrorist attacks, et al, were way up there, too. Essentially, we’re afraid of everything from computer hacking to being judged on appearance.

fear graphic_taupe

It seems to boil down to this: we just don’t trust each other.

Well, we have good reasons not to. People are mean and greedy — present company excepted, of course. Plus, our lives are too cushy for our own good. Everything’s climate controlled and down-filled, automated and pre-cooked and motorized. We’ll, occasionally, lift a finger to text, but even then it’s a thumb.

People no longer battle for survival, we’re not the hunter-gatherers of old. We still hunt, but for bargains and all-you-can-eat specials. We gather, too, and call it collecting — stamps, doorknobs, beer cans, whatever.

This freedom from struggle has turned us into great big fraidy cats. Instead of relaxing, we see danger around every corner and in every sneeze. We’re scared of our own shadows. I did a quick inventory of stuff I’m afraid of and the list was distressingly long:

fears list

See? Mostly self-induced. Figments of an overactive imagination. The real threats, like insanity and helmet-less biking, meh. There’s something totally ass-backwards there. Or is it just me? It is, isn’t it? It’s just me. Aw, nuts.

surprisedcopyright © 2015 publikworks

17 thoughts on “: a fearsome list :

  1. I was feeling quite calm until you reminded me of all this stuff … now I’m starting to think too much information is not enough. Can you recommend a cheap therapist? Don’t want to add money worries to the list …

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  2. Geeze, I’m not sure of what I am afraid of. I don’t think I have a list. Only one thing comes to mind. Being forgotten. I always say, I have no children I have no legacy, who will even notice when I am gone. That sounds ridiculously heavy, I know. But that is my biggest fear. I am weird!

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    1. I’ll remember you, Michelle.

      Besides, legacies are fleeting. Who remembers the name of the dude responsible for inventing the thermostat or the washing machine? And those were big, flaming, useful inventions.

      Speaking for myself, I only hope people forget some of my outlandish stunts. yeesh.

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  3. The old lady in me wants to jump up and lean on her walker, shouting in a whisper that in her day you were afraid of being killed by the black plague, not this identity theft nonsense, you were afraid of being eaten by a wild animal, lion, leopard, baboon (cos South African haha). Oh, how the times have changed.

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