I think it is fair to say that everyone has an irrational fear of something. For some, it is heights. For others, it is bugs. And for others, it is snakes. For me, it is sea creatures.
I HATE THEM. Anything that lives in the ocean. Alright, let me rephrase that. I hate to be in the ocean next to anything that lives there naturally. Dolphins and seals are cute and whatnot, but I will pay to stay my happy ass on the boat rather than swim with Flipper. Flipper can go screw himself.
The way I think of it is that these animals have a total unfair advantage over me. They can see well under water, swim fast, and can sneak up on you. I am not just talking about sharks. I am talking about the stupid crabs that you accidentally step on or the dumb needle fish that will nibble at your thighs while youre standing waist deep, non chalantly chatting with your friend, while also emptying your bladder, but pretending that it is just a "warm spot" that you just walked through.
I am afraid of all of them, but sharks really take the cake. You always hear of shark attacks and then the story is followed up with how rare attacks are, and how sharks really don't intend to chew on people. To be quite honest, I don't give a shit. I don't want to take my chance and bump into the one inbred, stupid ass shark that got kicked out of his mother's protection too early because he was too retarded for her to deal with. No thank you. That's all I can think about any time I wade into the water--- please god, don't let me meet the shark that is a few eggs short of a caviar tray.
They also say that sharks generally only feed at dawn and dusk. What about the shark that stayed up all night partying and woke up around noon and is really hungover and just wants a good piece of meat? What about that shark, hmm?
I've imagined every possible way that I can be defeated by sea creatures and take EXTREME caution when beaching it. I make as much noise as possible in the water when I walk out. I kick up a bunch of sand to let those dumb sting rays know to get out of my way. I also never turn my back to the great wide open. That just puts you in a vulnerable position. It's like "Hellllooo sea creatures, I am not paying attention. Come get my ass." Oh yeah, I also never go out alone. And I am also never out further than anyone else in my group. That old saying- you don't have to be the fastest, you just have to be faster than the slowest guy- I repeat that to myself anytime I am splashing around, trying to enjoy myself. (I realized that I have this thought even when it is me and the most loved of my loved ones. That's not good. But I guess that's why they call it irrational).
This extreme fear came to a head a few summers ago when I was at the beach on vacation with my family and some family friends. I was about 100 yards out with my then boyfriend and the youngest member of the family we were vacationing with, a 16 year old boy. We were just chatting and I was acting like I wasn't afraid to be in the water when I saw it. A big dark shadow. Dan and Harrison noticed it about the same time I did and before Dan could turn around to see my reaction, I was already half way to the beach. I'm not sure if I channeled my inner Jesus Lizard (cause we all know it is much more likely for me to channel a lizard and not Jesus), and ran on top of the water, but I got my ass out of there faster than you can say "holy shit- look at that shark swimming up to us."
When I made it to the sand, I crumpled over and tried to catch my breath. Through my gasping, I heard laughing. I looked up to see my mother laughing so hard she was about to cry. "Was it even that big of a fish?" she choked out to me. "Yeah, it was a huge fucking shark, Mom. And it was right by us." Apparently, my Mom and the momma of the other family were watching the whole thing from the beach. They watched all three of us see something, followed by our responses. The boys' was something like: "Hmmm... I wonder what that is" while my response was "OHMYGODIAMABOUTTODIEGETMETHEFUCKOUTOFHERE." And apparently, my extreme freakout was quite obvious from the shore.
All my mother could do, after I just saw "my life flash in front of my eyes," was laugh her ass off and ask me to go into the condo to make her another drink.