Well, maybe not for FDR. For him to conquer fear destroyed most the planet.
And we look at fear embarrassingly, laughing when we find it's only the wind making that noise. There is a story that many years ago the people of Willimantic Connecticut heard a mysterious sound coming from the woods. They barricaded the settlement, started huge fires, primed their muskets and blunderbusses and hunkered down staring out into the night, white knuckled and rabbit eyed.
They thought the Indians were going to make an attack and storm the town, scalping all the men and sexing all the women.
As dawn came, the fires burned low, they realized the sound their heard were just frogs, croaking in the night.
They felt a little foolish.
What they didn't know, what no one knew except me and now you is that the Indians were about to attack but staved off when they saw the bristling wall guns pointed their way.
There are giant frogs in Willimantic now. Huge copper ones with brass eyes sitting on cement thread spools. Really cool.
I had a bit of a scare. Could have been a bit of undigested beef, or a heart attack, who knew? I stopped by the clinic to have my blood pressure checked and next thing I know I'm off to the hospital. Needles, tests, pills, phlebotomists, techs, nuclear guys with mysterious lead lined boxes and steampunk brass wind up syringes, nurses and doctors. All very, very, scary. They were scared too. Something was not quite right.
And I looked like a perfect fool in that insipid gown and stupid socks. They woke my up every 45 minutes to stab me again. Sometimes for practice. You will never get an ounce of sleep at a hospital, let me tell you.
But they have concluded it was not my heart. My ticker is fine, quite happy, in fact. My blood pressure is outstanding, my pulse rate exceptional. All the veins and arteries are clean as a whistle. The phlebotomist exclaimed that my blood is savory and creamy. I thought that a little odd.
So they sent me home with my perfect heart. They also sent a bit of comfort. Comfort knowing that random twinge isn't a heart tube prepping to pop.
Yes, I feel embarrassed. Silly for getting all panicky. But they were far more panicked than I so maybe I should have been more concerned.
I also felt weak and old and helpless.
When I was young, my classmates, playmates, all made fun because I wore glasses. "FOUR EYES!" That was popular back in they day and because of that I never wore them. Now I really need them and only wear them when I absolutely have too.
Humans are animals. We are, we are. Don't let anyone kid you. And animals smell weakness. Know weakness, gauge you, score, plan to destroy you. You'll either be at the back of the pack as croc bait, or battling for top dog.
It's quite the shocker looking at a mirror in a hospital wearing that blasted clown suit and the rubber mask of an old man with sagging cheeks, thinning lips and wispy hair. It's not a mask. It's my face. How did I allow that to happen? How did I allow myself to become weak? I have the choice to stay young an immortal! Why did I choose something else?
As if I had that choice.
What a reminder that all we are is a chemically driven walking water bag of electrified meat. Looks dynamic and amazing until something breaks, something pops, or worse, something weird grows. The best you can do is take care of it, maintain it and on occasion, bring it into the shop for repairs, adjust the fan belt and timing gear.
Least you mind up on the side of the road, hood up, steam hissing out, that guy who ignored the gauge trembling into the red.