Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Weird things for Katie

Katie Schwartz tagged me about a year ago asking me to list some weird things about myself. These aren't really funny or even entertaining, but I can guarantee you they are weird. Enjoy.

1. I'm afraid of escalators. Mostly when they are going down. I absolutely, positively cannot step onto a down escalator unless I have at least one free hand to hold the rail. And if there is a crowd of people behind me, I have to let a bunch of people go ahead of me because I usually have several false starts when trying to step on. It's really embarrassing, and I don't even know how this phobia started. It's like one day I woke up and decided to be afraid of escalators. Who the hell knows.

2. I am terrfied of choking. Often, while eating, I recall a grade-school movie about how to do the Heimlich maneuver. I especially remember this lady who was putting away meat in a Tupperware. She put a small slice of beef in her mouth, choked, and had to give herself the Heimlich maneuver using the back of a chair. It was really gross, so I decided I never needed to go through that. Hence, I became terrified of choking. When I am eating, if I think about any of this I start to fear that I will choke right then and there. Then I cough and slap myself on the chest, generally scaring the shit out of whomever is eating with me. Consequently, I am forced to eat alone more and more frequently.

3. I go through spells where I suffer from a serious aural comprehension problem. Someone will be talking to me and I will realize at some point that I have no idea what they have been saying. So I try to start listening and instead of hearing what they say, I become fixated on the person's physical act of speaking. I watch the month, listen to the sounds of the words coming out of the mouth, and try to detect an accent. And then when the person asks me a question related to what they have been saying, I am fucked.

Sometimes I don't even understand the simplest things, especially if a foreign accent is involved. Last week I bought a sandwich and a cup of soup from a carry-out deli. As I was paying, the cashier said "you get one soda with this." I had NO idea what she said. I thought she was trying to explain the price to me or something. "Just tell me how much it costs, and I'll pay" I kept saying. She looked at me like I was retarded and just said "one soda. Take one soda." When I finally caught on, I felt like a damn fool.

4. There is a certain curse that follows me around where I am denied beverages in restaurants. Furthermore, at least twice I have been reprimanded by waiters for daring to ask (a second time) for my beverage after my food has been served. It is a proven fact that something about my aura triggers this phenomenon, because several friends have noticed that it only happens to them when I am around.

In short, I am a fucking freak. Happy New Year!


Anonymous said...

Me as well on #2

Bubs said...

I understand your escalator issues. I used to have the same problem, only on escalators going down.

Some of it goes back to a trip to Shea Stadium as a child, where I saw a kid's foot get stuck in the down escalator.

I think I'm better now. In that regard, anyway.

Anonymous said...

At first, I thought #2 said "I am terrified of choking, often while eating" instead of "I am terrfied of choking. Often, while eating.." I thought to myself that is like saying, "I have a fear of breathing, especially while inhaling." But then I read the sentence again.

Obviously, I'm mentally deficient.

Anonymous said...

I am with you with the escalators. they scare the crap out of me. As a kid I always thought they are going to suck me in.

Grumpy and I always have bad luck with waiters We dont know why and we ar enot cheap dinners and so our bill is usually a good amount and we tip well since we are in the professions. oh well

Tenacious S said...

As someone who suffers from a phobia, I can relate. They have nothing to do with logic and everything to do with a reaction that your body creates that you are unable to control. Medication works, but then you are drugged. How's that for happy? Sadly, I think you are genetically susceptible to phobias and I know both of my kids are well on their way to a lifetime of momentary freakouts. Sweetness is terrified of elevators and Bink has a fear of heights. By the way, the fear of height afflicts almost every member of my Mom's family and one of my aunts has multiple phobias. We are genetically weak.

Coaster Punchman said...

Old Lady, mealtime would be GREAT with the two of us there!!!

Bubs, thanks for admitting your phobia. I hope you never have to chase a bad guy down an escalator!

Grizzbabe, I relate to the mentally deficient, so it's ok. Plus, I'm sure my writing gets to be just about that bad sometimes.

Dino, I too waited tables for several years so I try to be patient. Yet, the very first rule I learned as a waiter (in a busy deli) was "just get them their drink before you do anything else, and that will buy you at least 10 minutes." That one little trick ended up making my job so much easier that I came to see getting a customer a drink right away as of paramount importance. So now, when this "rule" is violated, I find myself grossly offended.

Ten-S, do you want to talk "genetically weak?" Come spend the holidays with my family. Then you will see what strength you are actually made of. Trust me on this one. Ask Lu and Min.

Anonymous said...

I was a recreational escalator rider until...

My shoelace was sucked in by an escalator (up)! It made this awful grinding noise as I tried to rip it out as my (older) sister stood in front of me, screaming, "YOU'RE GETTING SUCKED IN!!!!!"

Coaster Punchman said...

No kidding. I think hearing stories like that may have prompted my phobia. I think I heard of a kid getting his foot mangled after his shoelace got caught and he was unable to free it. I'm assuming you escaped unharmed, at least I hope.

katie schwartz said...


I am terrified of choking. Read my blog. I've written about it many times. It's my #1 phobia in life and it was because I saw my dad choke on steak THREE TIMES! omg. we are so tight right now it's not even funny.

I'm also phobic of escalators and have the same exact reaction you do.

oy, I'm sorry you go through the ahj, bubbie.

ps: loved the meem. I'm digging this tune out thing you have going with people. I like it. don't hate it. it's a way of vacationing while you're still present.

Coaster Punchman said...

I guess this is a good reason to share our weird stuff - we find so many soulmates. I am shocked at how many readers have commented about their fear of escalators.

Oh, and maybe that was your dad (in drag) that I saw in those grade school movies!!

Tumuli said...

I'm not terrified of escalators, though I do worry about falling and/or tripping every time I ride one.

I space out frequently -- sometimes intentionally. Especially when around someone I do not care to hear.

We're all freaks, to some degree...

Anonymous said...

I'm amazed at the amount of escalator fear and am glad to not share it but should be as I'm aware of a few bad stories involving them.

I'm not laughing at you Mombi but with you. You are laughing right?

CP - you're weird.

Coaster Punchman said...

Yes Tumuli, but then what do you do when you are asked a question and you haven't been listening?

Dale, right back at ya.

katie schwartz said...

coulda been. he's a big fag hag.

jin said...

(This comment is on your 'weird things meme'...I'm late to the party! LOL)

I do # 3 A LOT! I never used to...I don't know how it started. I just zone away...it happens with certain customers who kind of ramble on about something that doesn't interest me. It only causes a problem when they start placing an order in the midst of their ramble! :-S

I do it to D a lot too...giggle...doesn't matter what I say though...he NEVER asks a 'technical' question of me! One day I swore I was going to see how long I could 'carry on' a conversation with him without saying anything more than, "Yes." "No." and "I dunno." It went on for HOURS!!! Hahahahahaaha!

My Mom was that way with escalators when she could walk. It wasn't always, though. We actually traced the start of the fear down to a skin cream she was using to treat psoriasis with; the cream contained steroids which absorbed into her bloodstream & caused the dizziness associated with the 'moving stairs'. It took a LONG time after she stopped using the cream for her to be able to step on one again...although it always took her FOREVER to step on!!!