Yoda: Stupid Fears!
"Enough with the special effects already!" I yelled.
"Yeah, kind of gets on your nerves, doesn't it?" a voice behind me said.
Around I spun. Sitting comfortably on a chaise lounge and holding a peanut-butter sandwich in one hand, a big, ugly, hairy spider was! Huge it was! Maybe seven feet tall! And talking to me it was! Immediately, a new pair of shorts I required.
"Please, Mr. Spider, bite me do not!" Shaking too much to run, my legs were.
"The name's Steve, Steve Spider. Nice to meet ya." One of his hairy legs he extended to me to shake.
Bring myself to touch it, I could not. "H-h-hello. Yoda my name is."
"Yeah, I know who you are, Yoda ol' buddy. Have a seat." Next to him he gestured. Want to I did not, but too scared not to I was. So down next to him I sat.
"That's better," he said. "Look, I gotta tell ya about this whole biting business. You're blowing it way out of proportion. I don't wanna bite you anymore than you wanna bite me. Uh, you don't want to bite me, do you?"
"N-n-no, want to b-b-bite you, I do not."
"Good. Just checkin'. You know how it is. You get all kinds of weirdos in this ring of fear thingy."
"So, want to bite me you do not?"
"No, of course not! Look, we spiders, we don't even like how people taste. I mean, if I could go my whole life without biting anybody, I would. Know what I mean? Of course, there's a couple of bad apples that give the rest of us spiders a bad reputation. You know, goin' around, just biting people all willy-nilly. But most of us, we're nothin' like that, I tell ya. I mean nuthin' like that. Most of us? The only way we're going to bite somebody is if we're real scared."
"Scared, spiders get?"
"Oh sure! We're more afraid of you than you are of us!"
"Really? Just something we tell younglings, I thought that was. But, so big you are! Scared of someone like me, how could you be?"
"I'm this big because you made me this big."
"Yeah, that's right. In your mind, this is how you usually see us spiders. I mean, I might be really small in real life, but to you I might as well be some big creature right out of them old horror pictures because that's how scared you are. Get it? OK, look. Let me put it this way - right now, I'm this big because that's how afraid you are of me. Understand now?"
"Beginning to understand I am, I think."
"Good. 'Cause if you didn't understand, we'd both be wastin' our time here. Sometimes, I get some real airheads in here, know what I mean? I explain it to 'em. They don't get it. I draw pictures. They don't get it. There was this one lady, I tell ya, I was doin' charades for her and she still wasn't gettin' it. A real airhead, you know? Now that's one lady I did feel like bitin', just for the heck of it. I mean I didn't, you know, bite her. But I sure felt like it, let me tell ya."
"But so scared of us why would spiders be?"
"Think about it. I mean, if I were my real spider size, could I crush you to pieces just by steppin' on ya? Could I kill ya just by rolling on top of ya by accident? Could I destroy your house just by walkin' into it? Well could I? You know, if I was little, like spiders are most of the time?"
"No, do all that you could not."
"That's right. But you could do all that to me, plus a whole bunch more. And that, my friend, is why we spiders is afraid of you people. Get it?"
"Wow. Never thought it of that way I have."
"Don't get me wrong," he said as a bite of his sandwich he took. "I ain't holdin' a grudge or nuthin'. That's just the way it is. Don't mean we have to have bad feelings between us, does it? Say, you want some of my sandwich? It's pretty good."
See I could that peanut-butter it was. "No thank you. I could not."
"Oh that's right. You're afraid of peanut-butter too, ain't ya? Well, maybe it's time for that flash-back now."
"Yeah. You know, a cheasy plot device that will explain your fears in a totally non-creative way? Anyway, let's get this puppy started."
Before me, wavy lines appeared. (A flash-back it is not, if wavy lines there are not.) Then, transported to another time and place we were. A kitchen it was. A youngling sitting at the table there was.
"That little guy look familiar?" Steve asked.
"Yes," I said, "Me that is."
"And the female standin' at the counter makin' sandwiches?"
"My Mommy, that is. Oh no, that day it is, isn't it?"
"Yep, it's exactly that day."
"Bear to watch, I can not."
"Sure you can. Besides, you ain't gotta choice. You're here to face your fears, remember?"
To watch the scene, we both turned. Making sandwiches, the female finished. One to the youngling she gave. Eating it quickly, 'mini-me' started. Then, suddenly he stopped. At his sandwich he stared.
"Found it he has. The spider in his sandwich he sees." I said aloud.
"Yeah, but look at him," Steve said, "Does he look too scared to you?"
"No, more grossed out he is." Surprised I was at this.
Finally, my younger self spoke. "Eww, yucky. Mommy, a dead spider in my sandwich there is."
Around the female spun. Angry she looked. "Eat it!"
"Going to eat that sandwich you are!" Getting louder with every word, her voice was. "Tired of how ungrateful you are, I am. Very hard at my job just to provide for you and your brothers and sisters I work. Then come home and wait on you kids hand and foot I have to. Tired of your drama I am! Going to eat that sandwich you are!"
One of his hairy legs, Steve put around my shoulders. "She used to yell at you a lot?"
"All the time she did not. Only when stressed out she was. Or when annoyed she was. Or when busy she was. Or when awake she was."
"How'd it make you feel when she yelled at you like that?"
"Upset I would be. Very hard to be a good little boy I tried. But no pleasing her there was."
"The little guy, he looks pretty scared now, doesn't he?"
"Yes, the first time she yelled at me like that, this was. Many times after this, there would be. But the first time this was."
"Do you think that maybe when you see a spider, you're not really afraid of him, but what you're really afraid of is being yelled at by your Mom?"
"Yes, yes, perfect sense that makes to me! Really good at this you are!"
"Yeah, I know. Let's go sit back down."
Soon, back where we were before, we were. A long time, Steve and I talked. A good guy he is. It turns out, a fan of Dolly Parton he is too. Very well, we got along. A bite of his sandwich he offered me again.
"I think you're ready to try this now." Half of his peanut-butter sandwich he tore off and gave to me.
A bite out of it I took. Very good it tasted. So free, I felt.
"So," Steve asked, "how is it?"
"Goog," I said, "Bug ig sgigging to the gop of my moug."
Steve smiled. "You did it, Buddy. Ya faced your fear from the past."
A bright light flashed. On the sand between the rings I found myself.
Through the second ring I stepped. At the grocery store I was, the frozen food aisle. Instinctively, to the ice cream I went and for Ben and Jerry's Chunky Munkey I looked. None on the shelf, there were. To panic, I started.
A stock boy I grabbed. "The Chunky Munkey where is? Some Chunky Munkey I have to have!"
"I'm sorry, sir, but we're out."
"Then call Ben and Jerry's and order more, you must!"
"We can't do that."
"Because they stopped making it. Say could you let go of my neck, now? That's starting to hurt."
"Nooooooooooooooo!!!!!!!!!" I yelled. "Stop making this flavor they can not!"
"Pretty attached to that flavor, aren't ya?" Familiar that voice sounded.
Around I turned, and there Steve was! Only much smaller he was this time. Almost my height, he was.
"Steve, smaller you are."
"Well, you ain't so afraid of me no more. Anyway, you look pretty upset. What's wrong?"
"Out of Chunky Munkey they are. And stopped making it they have! My worst mightmare this is! Know what I am going to do, I do not! Afraid this would happen I was."
"Why do you think you like that flavor so much?"
"Know I do not. Because very good it is, I guess."
"Really? Is it much better than Phish Food? Everything But The...? Chubby Hubby? How about Cherry Garcia? Is it better than Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough? Fossil Fuel? Karamel Sutra? What about Marsha Marsha Marshmellow, or Dublin Mudslide?"
"No, better than those flavors it is not, I guess."
"Would you be so upset if they cancelled one of those?"
"No. Go on my life would."
"Then why are you so afraid of them cancelling this flavor? What's so special about Chunky Munky that you've stock-piled over a hundred pints of it in that big deep freeze down in the Temple basement?"
"Know I do not."
"Think back. Think back to that day with your mom. What did you do that night?"
"Well, some ice cream I got myself, and then a bowl of it I ate."
"Do you remember what flavor it was?"
"Let's see... oh, wow. Remember now I do. Very similar to Chunky Munky it was. Yes."
"But that ain't the only time you ate that flavor, was it?"
"No. Every time my Mommy yelled at me, eat some of it I would."
"Did it make you feel better?"
"Yes. I see. Saying you are that because with Chunky Munkey I comfort myself, so afraid I am that they might cancel this flavor, the reason is?"
"Nope. You said it. And you're absolutely right."
"Wow. Really, really good at this you are."
"Thanks. Say, it looks like there's a pint of Chunky Munkey you overlooked right there."
"Alright that is. Need it any longer I do not."
Another bright flash. Again on the sand I was. Through the the third and final ring I stepped.
In one of the many trailer parks on Tatooine, I was. In a really messy yard in front of one of the trailers I was standing. A couple of old air speeders sitting on blocks, there were. Also, an old water heater and toilet with plants growing out of it, there were. On the steps of the trailer, an old fat drunk spitting out his chewing tobacco, was sitting. Take me long to realize who he was it did not.
"Kenobi," I said, "you that is?"
Recognize him I could. Even though old he was, a mullet under his NASCAR hat, he was sporting. Wearing one of those "wife-beater" shirts and old cut-off jeans, he was. Up he looked at me and coughed. Out of his mouth a large orange cloud of Cheeto dust came. "Hey there, Master."
"Just like you pictured him, isn't it?" A tiny voice said.
"Say that who did?" I asked.
"Down here, Yoda! It's me, Steve!"
Down I looked. There he was. Steve. But this time, the size of a regular spider he was. Psycho-analyzing me again, he started.
"You're pretty afraid Obi-Wan will turn out this way, aren't ya?"
"Yes. About this all the time I worry."
"That's why you're so rough on him, isn't it?"
"Yes. Want him to turn out like this I do not."
"You don't worry as much about the other Jedi, do you?"
"Like a son, Kenobi is to me."
"Have you told him that?"
"I.. I know not. Tell him that I can not."
"Did your Mom ever tell you stuff like that?"
"No. But need to she did not. How she felt about us kids we all knew."
"But it would've been nice to hear it, wouldn't it have?"
"Yes. It would have been I guess."
"Do you think maybe that's why you don't know how to say things like that to other people?"
"And maybe that's why you're kind of rough with people in general. Because that's the only way you know how to relate to others?"
"It could be, yes."
"Don't you think you should tell Kenobi... gack!"
On Steve I stepped. Getting annoying he was. Driving me crazy, all of this Psychology was.
Over to Kenobi I walked. "Kenobi, something to tell you I have."
Burp! "Yeah, what is it?"
"Lean closer you must."
"OK, what do ya want to tell me... OUCH!"
With my cane I wacked him. "Doofus!"
Suddenly, another flash of bright light there was. Back on the sand I found myself. Waiting for me, JJ was.
"So, what was it like?"
"Very interesting," I said, "...but stupid."