If we’re lucky in the Opinion section, we work through our beliefs completely and support them with great arguments. But sometimes, we don’t need a deeper reason to hold our convictions. Rapid Fire is for those tweet-length takes that can be explained in just a sentence or two — no more justification needed.
In this Rapid Fire, writers gave their opinions on the question: How would you defend your most irrational fear?
Maddie Papcun, Opinion Editor: We should all be more afraid of birds. They entirely lack a moral code and are the most terrifying version of crazy – calm one second, attacking you for a french fry the next. I’m not advocating for fear-based eradication of all bird species, but moreso deliberate avoidance, a mutual agreement between humans and birds to not mess with each other, if you will.
Owen Silverman, Weekly Columnist: Throughout childhood, quicksand was presented to me as a much larger problem than it’s turned out to be. That being said, you best believe I keep my distance from any suspicious-looking sand or lighter colored dirt while on hikes. When the day comes for me to depart from this life, I will do everything in my power to ensure it is not due to quicksand. It’s not even quick! The fear of that slow descending engulfment into who-knows-where has kept me up one too many nights.
Nell Srinath, Associate Opinion Editor: If there’s one thing that’ll never cease to raise the hairs on my neck, it’s seeing someone I know in public. You know the feeling: You’re at the grocery store, dressed-down for some incognito study time, or braving the scary part of the rec center (you know the one); you meet eyes with a peer with whom you’re not yet close. The mental catastrophe of wondering if you should say “hi” or pretend to have not seen them is enough to make the most enlightened sage crumple like gift wrap… or maybe that’s just me.
Harrison Raskin, Editor in Chief: This is a particularly embarrassing and silly irrational fear, but I’m scared that I’m going to die someday. Not only could this be painful but I have no idea what it would feel like afterwards and trying to imagine only makes me more confused. But please don’t worry, I’m seeing a therapist to unlearn these unhealthy and unproductive thoughts.