Thursday, November 3, 2016

Day 5: Appetite for Fright?

      What is it about scaring ourselves that we find so addicting? Going to haunted houses to be chased or frightened, or being a thrill-seeker jumping out of an airplane with or without any gear? Why do we, as a society, find this kind of thing to be so much fun?
     I personally think the idea of paying money for someone else to scare you (like in a haunted house or attraction) is stupid. "Here's $30, try to scare me, and at the end of the night I will have nothing to show for my money." That is pointless. Especially considering you probably worked considerably hard to earn that money and you throw it away simply for the opportunity to--what exactly--be scared?

      The other day I was at Lagoon with some friends and my family and a majority of my friends wanted to go through the "Frightmares" haunted houses. The lines were enormous after about 5:00 (PM), which is when "Frightmares" starts; everyone was in line for a scare. I mean, this was a plus for us--the other people in the park were almost all in line for these haunted attractions so the lines for the rides were considerably shorter than they were throughout the rest of the day. So why? Why was everyone drawn to this "thrill"?
      What is it about adrenaline coursing through our veins that people seem to so readily enjoy and embrace? The feeling of our sympathetic nervous system speeding up our heartbeat? I'm afraid I don't know the answer to this question. I scare fairly easily which I normally wouldn't admit to. My biggest fear is being in the dark, at night (or very, very early morning), especially in the mountains. Why? Well to explain the "dark at night" part, when is the last time you took a good look at the world we live in today? There are crazy people running all over the place and I realize there are just as many scary things going on during the day as the night, but at night is when there is the cover of darkness and no one to hear you scream in a sleeping world. That is not a pleasant thought in my opinion. Why did I add the mountains to this fear? Umm, hello? Lions, and tigers, and bears? Specifically any predatory animal that can and will harm and/or eat humans. (Yes I realize that at least in our mountains we don't have lions and tigers.)

      One year at girl's camp, we (my friends J, A, and I)* were heading back to the tent that J and I shared. None of us had a flashlight which was obviously brilliant considering it was about 10 PM. There was a small path off the main "road" that led to our tent--a path that only one person could travel through at a time. My friends J and A volunteered me to go first towards the tent. My visibility at that point was at about zero. I started to take a step between the small trees that lined the opening to the path when I heard something hissing. And then, guess what? I screamed. This led to J screaming, and then A laughing at J and I screaming. We really should have had a flashlight. We never learned what it was, whether the hissing came from a raccoon or a skunk (although if it was a skunk, we probably would've been able to tell), or if there was even anything there.

      I seriously don't understand the allure of that. But you know what? To each their own.

*Just using first initials for privacy's sake.