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Wednesday, April 5, 2017

The Professional Worry Leagues

In her fab post, When Your Brain Sees No Point In Being Rational, Michelle at Rubber Shoes writes about her, perhaps too quick, ascents into panic mode.

Fer instance, she hears a fuckton of sirens and worries about her son – the klaxons are sounding on the road she knows he’s driving on to get home. Immediately she texted to see if he was OK. Go read – the exchange it's hilarious. It's funny AND a response I can TOTALLY understand.
My comment on her post:
I only mention it BUT, as I close in on 60 (it’s still 2 years off DAMMIT!) I panic slightly less than I did at, say, 52. It’s a close thing though. Wisdom and calm haven’t come with age – laziness has. I just can’t be fully arsed anymore.
Right after I hit the submit comment button I realized that there's more to it than my big ol' slothhood. I remembered that, since The Amazing Bob’s first heart attack back in our Cambridge days, EVERY damn time I heard a siren or an ambulance barrelled past, a cold sweat of fear would soak me. Are they coming for my man?! IS TAB OK!? Yes, I’d text him but I'd try to seem all smooth and cool – On my way home. How you doin’? Need anything?  I didn’t want my agitata to show and, possibly, if he wasn't already heart attack-ack-acking, trigger one (He was NOT that delicate but I was never in a clear mind when sirens blared and the mobile medics raced by). IF he had his cell on him (ALWAYS a crapshoot) he’d reply – let me know how the Soxies were doing, what Coco was up to or he'd teasingly describe the awesome treats he’d just popped outta the oven.

RELIEF! Every cell in my body would unclench.

It wasn’t just emergency vehicles that’d set me off AND it wasn’t just me.

One afternoon, TAB and I were driving home, rounding the corner onto the Neck when we saw, off to the side, a small mound of black fur. Whoever it was had clearly, seriously joined the angels, taken the last train to Toast City, canceled his subscriptions. Panic instantly gripped us both.

I asked, Could that be one of our kittens?
TAB, ever the relatively calm one (even in crazy worrying situations), sez, No, that’s a skunk.
But, BUT, is it one of ours?! (at the time we had a sweet family of Pepés and Flowers living under our front porch).
No, they wouldn’t stray this far from home (we were a mile away).

PHEW!!! Still, we rocked a fat sad but at least it wasn’t one of ours.

I’m less panicky now. Quite possibly this is because my still-breathing loved ones are STILL BREATHING. When I see an ambulance, I no longer need worry about TAB. If I see a smear of fur on the road? It’s not Rocco and Coco’s not done a runner in years.

Maybe this last horror show year has burnt out my panic receptors. While I care deeply for friends, fam AND Katzen, my mondo frenzy worry triggers just can’t be fully arsed. As long as I’m still able to, smartly and quickly, recognize and respond to crises, this is a better way to be.
Coco in her morning nap spot


  1. I love this! And what a cute kitty!!

  2. My mother is a worst case scenario expert, foreseeing disasters that I lack the imaginaiton to conjure.

    I catch myself doing the same thing as I get older. It is encouraging to know that trend might reverse itself in time!