Fear Is Afraid Of Courage

So, last night Chris, Fred and myself were heading off to see the rather smashing The Mentalists! play in a pub near Old Street. After finishing work we headed to a local hostelry which was honouring a ‘free Guinness’ voucher we had, along the way Ralph and Harry joined our entourage and we stood outside, supping ale and discussing the depth of the clouds and at what time the rain would start, said whilst trying to make the most of the alleged sunshine.

During our time out we ‘befriended’ an American girl who went by the name of Melissa. Melissa was cute, very cute…very cute and very drunk! So drunk she thought I was 26, yes…that drunk! We had a short but frequent conversation which consisted of her asking me my name, asking me why everyone hated Americans, asking me what I thought of Obama and how she wanted to vote for him but is afraid that he won’t be able to deliver and therefore the trusty McCain might be a safer pair of hands. Then she would go back inside to chat to her friends and then upon returning, we’d have the exact same conversation. Her reaction was amusing when she asked me if I thought she was pretty and I replied, “Yeah, you’re okay” if she wasn’t so close to falling over I swear she would have stamped her foot. Then she almost fell over laughing when she twigged I was joking.

Anyway, the trigger point for this blog was mainly about our conversation about Obama. I was trying to encourage her to vote Obama, reasoning that it is better to try something new and radical and so what if it fails, at least it was tried and we might find it is an easy tweak to fix and return new and improved, like shampoo… And of course if it doesn’t fail, we bask in the glow of satisfaction because we had belief in our ability to pick the good guy, when everyone else was worried it might go wrong.

It’s that fear that replicates the same emotions whether its politics, a work promotion, flying, our approach to a relationship even singing karaoke! We worry and fret about all that can go wrong and talk ourselves out of doing what our instincts are telling us is the right thing to do. How many times you experienced yourself saying, “I should have listened to myself before!” I’ve done it loads of times, placing a bet on a horse for example and having a feeling for a rank outsider and then at the time of writing the betting slip I change to a safer bet only to watch my outsider romp home…If only!

But experience has taught me that by facing our fears we ultimately discover that what we feared most was statistically less likely to happen. After a couple of times you realise, “Shit! This wasn’t so bad after all” and suddenly that fear has been swept out into the street and lost in the wind. I hope Melissa votes Obama and I hope America votes for Obama and gives Change a Chance! To paraphrase, It’s better to have tried and failed than to never have tried at all!

By the way, The Mentalists! were as good as ever even tho I think I offended Kim when she apologised for a songs alleged ‘rubbishness’ because it was new and as they played it more it would get better. I remarked, “Could it get any better?” which had a silent How? at the start of the sentence, this however was lost in the noise of the pub and she thought I was being critical.

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