Scotch and Vampires

First thing, I think I did a poor job explaining myself in the last post. I am well over my past traumas, well over them. All I meant was that I’m very familiar with how my body and my mind respond to trauma, and it irks me that in some ways my response to Natan’s death has been a familiar one. Not that it has returned me to those traumas.

I was thinking last night, as I was walking home from a friend’s house with a quarter-full bottle of Scotch, first of all that I’m quite the adult now, not afraid to walk through my neighborhood with an “open container.” I hadn’t been drinking from it, it was just the left-overs from a recent visitor and my friend hates Scotch and we like it so she sent it home with me. But I was also thinking about how when I’m out alone in the dark, I’m not afraid of any person.

I’m rather tough and trained to defend myself. But I am inexplicably afraid of vampires. Even as I know reasonably that they don’t exist. But my inexplicable fear of them is great enough that in college I developed a statistical model for why they couldn’t exist to help me overcome my fear. Nevertheless, whenever I’m outside alone after dark, I can keep myself brave until the moment I get to the door and have to fumble with my keys. Then terror overtakes me, because well, in a horror movie or book I suppose that would be the moment the monster would choose to attack the heroine.

As I was walking along thinking about that, I realized something. I realized with much more specificity why a person had annoyed me earlier in their day with her Facebook status, “J…is going to drive through the snow to visit her sister! Please pray that I make it safely.” First of all, if it’s really so dangerous out that you need Gd’s help to get somewhere, and it’s just for an afternoon of fun, shouldn’t you just stay home? I mean, really, is a social visit so important that you need divine intervention? And then, I got silly. Hey, it was snowing pretty hard the day Natan died. Maybe so many people were out unnecessarily driving on the roads to visit siblings and praying about it, that Gd couldn’t hear me above all that noise. That must be it.

I think some people think they live in a novel, and that they are the most important characters in it.

Another post, an anniversary post, on just that topic is brewing.

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9 responses to “Scotch and Vampires

  1. Oh, how those trivial “pray for X” things annoy the crap out of me! Really? Really? You think intervention is warranted for you to take an exam successfully? Have you tried studying instead? And on and on and on… Anything but peace and strength and I get incredibly turned off… And rather pissy.

    On a tangentially related note, have you seen the prayer for IDF that has been making rounds on the internets? It makes me sad and upset at the same time. I feel it’s inappropriate to ask for those things, and yet I feel it not the topic I can get into with most people posting/forwarding it…

  2. “I think some people think they live in a novel, and that they are the most important characters in it.”

    Boy, do I ever get that one…it’s the only time I ever want to burn a book.

    As for praying for trivial things, I actually don’t mind the trivial prayers, like the parking angels for a good parking spot. I figure, would any deity really listen to that kind of crap? Meh, not likely.

    I am sure it didn’t drown out your prayers for Natan. God was weeping himself for him.

  3. Interesting thought beruriah. But I don’t believe God answers those types of prayers. Sad to say, I might have believed in that before Hannah died, but not now. Life is just random, and we unfortunately won the worst lottery. But I think most people pray like that because it’s easier to believe that someone else is pulling the strings and that good people deserve good things. Unfortunately those are the same people who probably secretly think that we did something to deserve losing our children. I try to chalk it up to them as being rather simple-minded folk- we are much more evolved (and I say that only half-kidding!).

  4. Julia, Yup. I have. And I’ve deleted them, no comment…

    Aurelia and CLC, worry not. I’m joking about the prayers. I don’t think God was listening to anyone that day. (That’s another joke.)

  5. I used to rankle more at prayers like this a few years ago. The past couple years I have felt my heart softening toward this sort of seemingly trivial petitionary prayer. Perhaps because my faith tradition implores us to “pray without ceasing” and so it is my belief that there is nothing so trivial that we can’t take it to God in prayer. However, my understanding of prayer is more of an ongoing conversation between ourselves and God, in which the goal is ultimately to walk more closely with God and to align our hearts to his will for our lives. It’s more of a Brother Lawrence, Thomas Merton sort of view of prayer. In a nutshell, my hope is that the more I talk, the more I learn to listen.

    That said though, I don’t usually employ others to join me in my less weighty conversations with God. That is the part that kinda still gets me…

  6. That prayer reminds me of something from Little Women. That sort of quaint, novel-ish idea. Except those characters were sad and had enduring spirits. Sometimes I walk around feeling oddly confident too, but it’s a wonder what will shatter those moments.

  7. I love scotch. Why don’t MY friends hand me half-empty bottles??

    I’m ok with vampires as I walk home, but I am NOT ok in any dark bathroom with a large mirror in the middle of the night. Going to the bathroom at night used to terrify me. I’m (a little) over it now, but I still avert my eyes (think childish sleepover games – bloody mary…bloody mary…)

    I wish I was at a point in my life where I still thought that G*d = benevolent. I have almost asked my mom to STOP praying, lighting candles, etc. for our next attempt. Maybe if he/she doesn’t know about it, things will go smoother.

  8. Oh M! Me too. Seriously terrified of the mirror. And I freak myself out even thinking the words if I’m in the bathroom.

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