Deep Dark Fears
January 23, 2014 3:48 PM   Subscribe

Deep Dark Fears. Comic strips of people's lurking fears by Fran Krause. [Via]
posted by homunculus (34 comments total) 31 users marked this as a favorite
I actually have so many of those it's not even funny. Especially the freezing your feet and breaking your foot without knowing it and slipping and impaling yourself on a fence.
posted by winna at 3:53 PM on January 23, 2014 [1 favorite]

You probably shouldn't read these if you are an anxious or suggestible person, because, man....
posted by entropicamericana at 3:55 PM on January 23, 2014 [4 favorites]

The drink-straw-eyeball one had me laughing so hard I cried, but, as a dad, I have worried about that with my daughter when she was younger. Most of my deep dark fears are about things that might happen to her.
posted by perhapses at 4:11 PM on January 23, 2014

Well, I have a whole new list of irrational fears now...
posted by sarcasticah at 4:15 PM on January 23, 2014 [1 favorite]

Ahhhhhh the mushroom one just reminded me of my Hannibal-related mushroom trauma and do not want.
posted by yasaman at 4:18 PM on January 23, 2014

Running across the open plain one dark, starry night and got the 'falling into the sky' thing really bad.
posted by Smedleyman at 4:28 PM on January 23, 2014 [1 favorite]

It's weird how I can laugh at (most) of these individually, but when I read a bunch of them at once I'm overcome with the sense that the universe is an enormously scary place where the most terrible and improbable things can happen.

Which is true. So.
posted by Jeanne at 4:34 PM on January 23, 2014 [3 favorites]

I'm just relieved to know I'm not the only one who worries about having my eyes injured/ gouged out in bizarre ways THAT COULD TOTALLY HAPPEN.
posted by sarcasticah at 4:39 PM on January 23, 2014 [5 favorites]

If you sneeze while holding chopsticks then you could totally stab out your eye and puncture your brain.

Now I will not be alone in my terror!
posted by winna at 4:42 PM on January 23, 2014 [2 favorites]

The ones about ghosts watching you sleep, or while you do the dishes, are some of my deep dark fears.

But this is one I totally used to have when I lived alone.
posted by Kitteh at 4:50 PM on January 23, 2014

I don't worry about that as much as that when I go to the bathroom, alone in the dark, a dreadful form swims up out of the bathroom mirror and drags me in to kill me.

There's also the horrible thing that will know you're in the bed and pull you under it to eat you but is only able to detect you are there if your bare foot hangs over the edge. Socks on - no getting eaten by the monster. Socks off - monster snack.
posted by winna at 4:58 PM on January 23, 2014 [2 favorites]

This is such a good idea for a comic that I got instantly mad between reading the link text and clicking through, because I knew the cartooning wouldn't be able to do the concept justice. But NOPE, I was WRONG! The art and storytelling are absolutely great!

Thanks so much for posting this!
posted by Greg Nog at 5:17 PM on January 23, 2014 [6 favorites]

I have a few of these. I wouldn't call them "fears," exactly, because to me fear is something that may happen, that I dread. For example, I have a fear of my family members getting illnesses. Fine. That's a thing that happens. I think of these as, sort of, mind-tics. They're things that can't (or, at least, won't likely) happen, but still my brain puts that slight awareness of them in the back of my brain whenever possible.
  • Sometimes while driving in the mountains I am afraid I will forget how to turn the car, and drive over a cliff.
  • When it's windy, and I'm walking alone near trees, I always listen to their branches crackling and leaves whispering and wonder if they're sentient... and evil.
  • I don't like sleeping with any open things near me. This includes drawers, cabinets, windows, closets, bedroom doors, and boxes.
The mind is a weird place.
posted by sonic meat machine at 5:19 PM on January 23, 2014 [2 favorites]

A good alternate title for this would have been Wince.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 5:32 PM on January 23, 2014 [3 favorites]

These are really good. If they were in a book it is the sort of book I would buy.
posted by turbid dahlia at 6:35 PM on January 23, 2014

sonic meat machine, mind-tic is the perfect thing to call them.

It's like the fear, when standing by a high place, that you will uncontrollably hurl yourself off the edge on purpose just because you can.

Everyone has these, right? It's not just me, standing by the edge trying not to look into the beckoning abyss?
posted by winna at 6:35 PM on January 23, 2014 [5 favorites]

Yeah yeah, it's called "The Imp Of The Perverse"
posted by Greg Nog at 6:49 PM on January 23, 2014 [5 favorites]

The more technical term is "instrusive thoughts." This is the thing that makes you think thoughts like It would be so easy to stab someone with this knife!

I think it's something different from the fears/tics, though. It's not about doing something, it's about something weird and unavoidable happening to you.
posted by sonic meat machine at 6:53 PM on January 23, 2014 [1 favorite]

It feels like the same argument, though.

'Oh god, put our foot under the covers or something will grab it.'

'Nothing is going to grab our foot don't be stupid there's nothing but fluff and a trombone case under there.'

seconds pass while I stubbornly leave my foot out there for the monsters to see like it was an old fish filet at Golden Corral to strike a blow for Rationality or something.

'Seriously! Bring our foot under the covers or put on socks, for god's sake. You know how things do!'

'You are so stupid there is nothing there! Look, I'll stick my head under there and look right now.'


It's just like that, except the little irrational voice keeps saying that I'm going to jump, can't I feel that my legs are going to ruuuun at the ledge and launch me into space.
posted by winna at 7:07 PM on January 23, 2014

I am alone in the house for the first time in years. It is raining. I listen to the sounds of water in the dark. The rain hitting the shingles. The sound of it in the gutters. Ping. Ping. Ping. It is oddly insistent, interminable. There is a draft from the side of the room where the closet is: why is it so cold? Something rattles, somewhere out there. Did I turn off the stove? I didn't cook today. What was that sound upstairs? Something running across the floor? Probably an acorn on the roof. I wonder whether—

I wake up before dawn, my alarm going off. I check the phone just to make sure that it's the right alarm going off, and not one I've set for an entirely incorrect time. That has never happened. I shower. I look at the track of the sliding door. If I fell into the door, it would break, and I would fall onto the metal track, and the glass would crash down onto me, and the metal would cut my skin, and I would bleed out, unconscious, before anyone ever knew to worry. I brush my teeth. I watch the water swirling down the sink and remember a video I saw somewhere when I was young about a small child who fell while brushing his teeth and had the toothbrush lodge in his windpipe. What was that? Rescue 911? I go into the walk-in closet, which is crowded with my wife's clothes, and I think about spiders, and how the light never reaches into the corners because of the racks of clothes, and I pick out a pair of slacks and a shirt and I put them on and a pair of shoes, after checking for spiders, of course.

It's not dawn yet outside when I lock the door and I wonder if I have forgotten the iron. I didn't iron my shirt. I check for my wallet. There. Keys. There. Then I look around me and I notice it's still and foggy. The moon is long gone. I take a breath and walk down the porch in the amber half-light of the streetlamp toward my car. I see a shadow inside; is it—a coat. I shiver, and I hear something rustling in the woods across the street, and I get in my car hurriedly.
posted by sonic meat machine at 7:23 PM on January 23, 2014 [4 favorites]

Neuroses + 1, thanks.
posted by kurosawa's pal at 8:25 PM on January 23, 2014

oh dear

it hadn't occurred to me that the something wouldn't necessarily escape the...that it would drag me into the mirror....

posted by Kronos_to_Earth at 8:56 PM on January 23, 2014 [1 favorite]

That is some serious artwork. Excellent post, thanks!
posted by Crane Shot at 9:47 PM on January 23, 2014

I have never worried about being embalmed. My version of that one is either being in a casket and hearing the dirt hit the top or being cremated and feeling the flames lick my skin. I did not know anyone else ever worried about this crazy shit. What a relief. Loved this post.
posted by cairnoflore at 10:28 PM on January 23, 2014

I'm merely relieved I'm not the only with a fear of interminable floorplan dreams.
posted by arha at 12:19 AM on January 24, 2014

After crossing a road or doing something else vaguely dangerous, I am sometimes scared that maybe I just got hit by a car and died but it was so sudden that my neurons haven't stopped firing yet and so they are just extrapolating about life continuing on, kind of like how in dreams your mind can create a quite plausible reality. And then I always wonder how long they could carry on for, and so how long do I need to wait for before I know for sure that I'm not actually dead now... ?
posted by lollusc at 3:34 AM on January 24, 2014 [3 favorites]

(And I knew that I was depressed and should maybe go see a doctor -- even without the help of Ask Metafilter -- when I found myself contemplating that possibility with relief instead of fear.)
posted by lollusc at 3:36 AM on January 24, 2014 [1 favorite]

How is the one with the loaf made of nothing but endpieces not an irrational fear that inspires forehead sweating? I have just took the time and effort to open a can of fancy-pants tuna, the good stuff from the Portuguese market one town over, slice some celery and scallions super thin, mix it all up with mayo and some paprika, and now I have nothing but crustbutts to put it on? Gnagnagnagnagnahhh! No, Fran the Cartoonist, that is an anxiety... to be victimized by a corrupt bakery worker who hooks up all their freinds with endpiece-less awesome-loafs, and sticks me with the evidence of their dire deed.
posted by Slap*Happy at 5:03 AM on January 24, 2014 [1 favorite]

Yeah yeah, it's called "The Imp Of The Perverse"


I have always had a horrible horrible problem with intrusive thoughts, that got worse when I went through some traumatic things some years ago. It's especially bad when I'm exhausted, so one of my deep dark fears is being so sleep deprived that somehow the rubicon of my own conscious will is crossed and the Imp takes the wheel.

This is of course not going to help me get to sleep.
posted by louche mustachio at 5:37 AM on January 24, 2014

I never realized how many people have these eye-gouging fears. These scenarios have never even occurred to me. My anxieties are much less realistic, like Things in a swimming pool that will drag you under, something touching you in a dark room as you reach for the light switch, alien Greys staring into your windows at night (shut up, Communion really traumatized me as a kid).
posted by Kitty Stardust at 7:37 AM on January 24, 2014 [1 favorite]

I'm not sure what's happening in this one.
posted by the latin mouse at 10:57 AM on January 24, 2014

I suffer from hay fever that will render me nearly sightless. One day it occurred to me that I shouldn't keep my Visine and my Krazy Glue, packaged in identical small bottles, in the same pocket of my backpack.

I've never stopped freaking out about the "What if..."
posted by quarantine at 11:33 AM on January 24, 2014 [1 favorite]

My fear of high places wasn't of jumping or falling--it's that I'd look down and my glasses would fall off and break or get lost. I've had that fear since childhood and I still can't go on observation decks without standing about a foot from the railing.
posted by dlugoczaj at 1:09 PM on January 24, 2014

dlugoczaj: Actually happened to me! On my honeymoon, on a cruise ship, the wind picked the glasses off my face and they were tosssed overboard. For the remainder of the voyage, I was glasses-less.
posted by quarantine at 8:41 AM on January 27, 2014

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