|On fear and reason
||[Jul. 8th, 2005|12:45 am]
I've always been a coward at heart. I don't know why, but whenever the going gets tough, whenever there is a tough situation that demands fight or flight... I always fly. There's a horrible gnawing fear that crawls inside me like some kind of worm and it paralyses me at the worst possible moments. This spills out into my day to day life, as I tend to stress about forthcoming situations that I know will be difficult, because I know I'm going to have to face that thing in my gut and I know invariably I will lose. It makes me irritable, angry with seemingly nothing as I only I can see the chain of events that make me rage against the possible future I know I will not be man enough to deal with.
And yet, tomorrow, I'm going to get on the London Underground and travel into town, I'm going to go shopping, I need to get Jo her birthday presents, need to make her return from Plymouth something nice, since her birthday has been marred by the horrible events of the day. Next week I'm going to commute to work like I always do, I'm going to get off at Moorgate station, and move up through the tight, claustrophobic corridors of the station, a few yards from where dozens of people where killed and injured today. I'll eat my lunch on the steps of the station which was used as a temporary hospital for the victims after they were pulled to safety. I'll go about my day to day life in a place that today was turned into something resembling a battlefield.
I'm not a brave man. I've already said this. But I'm a reasonable, calculating man. 700 people? In a transport system ferrying 3 - 8 million bodies a day? Those are pathetic odds, not even worth squirming about. They could kill three or four times as much and you still couldn't make those odds practically fearsome. I stand more chance of being hit by a car than being killed by a terrorist... yet I don't tremble every time I cross the road.
I work hard, I earn my money to keep me and mine warm and fed and safe. I cannot stop work, I can't just stay in the house and not go anywhere. I'd be unemployed, and hungry and alone. On top of that, this town is in my blood now. I love London, flaws and all, as I've said in the past, and I certainly wouldn't replace it to live elsewhere just because occasionally terrorists tend to use it as a playground. So I have no choice, I have to commute, I have to use the system in which 38 people died today.
I'm going to use it tomorrow.
And I'm not afraid. And I'm an inveterate coward, who passes every challenge up that I safely can out of fear. I cannot pass this challenge up. The odds of injury are so small it's not even really a challenge. As a result... I'm not afraid. And if I'm not afraid - me, a huge coward - what chance do these terrorists really stand? None.
They are weak minded fools who cannot handle the factual realities of the world around them as it has been explained to them so incontrovertibly in the past century. Instead of exploring the opportunities and trying to develop themselves, they seek solace in superstition and delusion, allowing themselves to be brainwashed and trained by other people, because anything is better for them than facing up to the fact that we are all responsible for our own actions and that our miserable lot on this planet is all we get so we'd better make it a worthwhile one. Anything is better than actually thinking for yourself. Sheep.
And I'm certainly not going to let sheep tell me what to do.
Have a safe trip tomorrow everyone.