Animal Phobia

The Early Bird Runs Away from the Worm

Posted on Updated on

Button found a worm in the seed box, and brought it over to show me before eating it. He landed on my hand with it wriggling around in his beak. I’m an absolutely pathetic wimp when it comes to worms, so I screamed and ran away. Of course he dropped it and did the birdie equivalent of screaming and running away too. It wiggled off the side of the desk and now I know it’s around here somewhere, so I can’t stop peering at the floor, and I think my poor little yellow guy will always have a worm phobia too now.

I know extreme animal phobias can lead to some pretty silly behaviour, and also some nasty behaviour if the phobic person acts out and some poor critter ends up dead just because they give someone the willies, but worms and bats reduce me to puddles of terror. We had bats fly through the first house we lived in up in Zimbabwe. It was a really old but lovely double story (with resident ghost who stomped up and down the stairs, lurked, and exploded light bulbs over people’s heads), and lots of little spots for the creatures to squeeze themselves in. I was never the one to help them out though – I was the one completely covered by a blanket and cowering in the corner. I know that if there wasn’t someone else to let a bat out, I would find a way to do it from under a blanket though, because it’s not the bat’s fault that I’ve watched too many horror movies.

Movies that demonise animals generally irritate me. I didn’t enjoy Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds, because I’m pretty sure that things like that could trigger phobias, and there really are people out there who think that things like that could happen. I reckon that all the creatures on Earth are already in more than enough trouble thanks to us two legged terminators and munchers of everything that moves, so trying to instil fear of happy little feathery guys seems unfair as well as unnecessary to me. There are more than enough demons and ghosts to be getting on with in the scare department anyway. Now I’m going to have to find, catch, and release that worm before I can comfortably hang around my computer today.

Button the Weaver Bird