Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Am I Smarter than Wikipedia?

Today I have been thinking about all the things I've been afraid of in my life. There's real fear, like walking into your classroom the morning after having a horrible nightmare about one of your violent students. There's exciting fear, like when you can't figure out your next handhold on a particularly hard rock climb. There's motivating fear, like knowing that you're about to show one of your short stories to a respected friend or professor.

I could go on defining these different types of fear. However, what I have been experiencing today is more than fear. I described my fear of having my wisdom teeth removed to my mom as terror. When she said why, I told her that it was bigger than fear, (even though probably smaller than many things I've dealt with in my life,) because I can't execute a plan of action to make it go away. I've always been a person with a plan of action. But now all I can do it wait, and put my teeth and my consciousness in the hands of stranger.

Since I seem to be on a kick the past couple of days of looking up some basic words in our language, I looked up terror on wikipedia. And what do you know, terror is defined as "a pronounced state of fear...often characterized by a lack of knowing what to do next." I don't know what to do next. It's exactly what I said the problem was. I talked to my brother who told me ridiculous stories to get my mind off of it, I tried to read a book but kept rereading the same page, I pretended to clean up the outrageous stack of papers on my desk, but even that couldn't get me to calm down. It's completely irrational. It's so irrational that I wasn't even amused at myself for defining it in conversation with my mother almost exactly like the masses have defined it on wikipedia...This is serious, folks.

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