What fears do you have?

Last updated: Dec 17, 2005
Very minor update on Aug 18, 2006 - added a photo in section 3.1.4

1 Introduction

I've got a long list of fears, one of which I've had since 1988 and has been practically unchanged since. That is, it has neither gotten better nor worse. The big chunk of them came from my severe video game addition that lasted until around mid-2001 or so. Others have resulted from school and my bullies I've had, especially teachers in the case for my fears. Also included, added on Apr 18, 2005, are some past "fears" that I had, some of which I find stupid as of today. Learn about them including an interactive one with the fear of mirrors.

2 Current fears

These are various fears that I still have today. The most well-known one is the fear of mirrors.

2.1 The fear of mirrors

2.1.1 Origins

This fear, the fear of mirrors, has been with me for over a decade and a half, since about 1988 or 1989. This fear prevents me from getting too much in the direct path of a mirror. However, I have no problem going in front of mirrors in my mind game or in video games, even seeing one head on as an image on a screen is okay as well. I've got one major example of a case in which I didn't have this fear.

The exact cause is not known.

2.1.2 A comprehensive example

To help explain the impact this mirror fear has for me, we'll consider a very comprehensive example of a typical case - a department store (like Wal-mart or Kmart). Department store map

Let's say that I needed to go to a department store. Let's call this department store "The Mirror Maze Department Store". I need to get a few items for myself as well and need to follow my parents. Here's an overlay of this imaginary department store:

This image here has many colors and is color-coded. Here's what each color represents:

black - building borderlines and road; also the textual descriptions of the departments
red - flat mirror - cannot cross in front of one where the yellow areas are - these can only face one direction
yellow - the bad zone - an area in which you cannot go due to a flat mirror
cyan - the bad zone - an area in which you cannot go due to a ceiling mirror
green - special areas or a wall
dark green - key items you need on this run
blue - ceiling mirror - the worst of them all, these block much access to areas and are spherical; their "bad area" range, fortunately, is limited due to their design
light-gray - counters and shelves
dark cyan - dressing rooms
magenta - hall way boundaries - an open path to get between departments easier; may go off of if no mirrors are in the way

This map has a scale of 1 pixel is 6 inches making the store about 10,000 square feet. Straight up on the image is considered as "north".

On this run, you need to buy these items [department is noted in brackets and where the items are located is marked in dark green]:

ink for a printer [electronics]
a pack of pencils [general supplies]
three shirts of nearly any kind [men's clothing]
get a replacement oil filter [mechanical]
oil filter and four quarts of oil [mechanical]
look for a gift for someone who likes to read [book zone]
get about 15 to 20 packets of seeds [gardening]
buy a purse with at least 2 zipper side pockets and of medium size [women's clothing] Getting the stuff I need

Now, go through this department store as you normally would. Seems easy and quick, doesn't it? Now, because of my fear of mirrors, my "accessibility" is far limited. Now try going through this same department store, but avoid the areas marked in yellow. This is much harder than it seems and I need to go through nearly 4 times the distance to accomplish the same task taking about 3 times longer. It turns just about any store into a maze where you can't see many of the walls of the maze. Here'd be a typical path I'd take through this same store. Compare it to what you may normally do [in the same order for the items]:

  1. ink - Start at the very bottom and go north to the other end of the store, head east to the next intersection, then head south to the next intersection then back east just to get to the electronics.
  2. pencils - from the electronics department, head south, to the hallway then east to the wall and south to the department.
  3. three shirts - head east again to the wall, north to the wall, west past the two intersections, then south to reach the department. Here, I'd start with the top area and head south looking at the items. When the mirror blocks the path, I go out to the hallway, around the merchandise bench [usually ducking if the wall mirrors were high and the merchandise bench was low] then back into the department to get the other stuff. To get that final item, I'd have to go around the merchandise bench to reach it
  4. oil filter and oil - exit the men's department to the east taking the "detour", head north to the wall, east to the next intersection, south to the next intersection, then finally west to pick up the items
  5. book - From the mechanical area, I'd head east to exit the department, then head south. From this area, none of the books were of interest to the one who wanted the gift. The topic of interest, mystery, was on the other side but is "blocked" by the mirror. Just to get to that other side, I have to go east, then north to the wall, west to the next intersection, then south to the main intersection, a walk about a tenth of a mile! I get to the "other side" and find the perfect book. To get that book, I'd have to "hug" the merchandise shelves to "avoid" the mirror.
  6. seeds - to get the seeds, I'd then go west to exit the department, head all the way north to the wall, head to the east, then south and finally east again into the department. Because no mirrors are close by, getting these items is easy and quick.
  7. purse - from the gardening department, head west to the intersection, north all the way to the wall, west again to the next intersection, then south to the women's clothing department. In this store, all purses are found on the southernmost shelf in this department. To find the purses, I check all shelves from top to bottom. The southern shelf had the purses. Here, I searched the perfect one with little worries of mirrors.
  8. checkout - in order to pay for the items, I'd have to head to the checkouts. My local Wal-mart store has lots of those ceiling mirrors making only 2 of 20 checkout lanes "accessible" This imaginary store only has 14, but with 4 accessible and "hard to get to". Getting near the checkouts in this store is much tougher than any of my local stores. From the women's department store, I'd head south to the hallway, east to the intersection, south to the area where the carts are, then, hugging the northern part of this hallway "lane", I'd slip "past" the ceiling mirrors to right where the shelves are. Once I pass the first big ceiling mirror significantly, I'd then be able to get into the checkouts area and unload the cart.
  9. exit "Mirror Maze Department Store" - Now, most bizzarre about the next part is, something I sometimes "have" to do in many stores, is back out of the checkout area, hug the shelves again going west, and exit out of the store. What a big walk that's needed!

Yep, this is about a very typical journey I'd take though a department store. I have to deal with this in almost any store, grocery stores [especially where the fruits and vegetables are], department stores [especially around jewelery, and clothing areas], and even the schools were "bad" with the mirrors. Because of a large mirror in Central Campus, the school I most hated, I couldn't even get to the attendance office or the office in general. Someone normal would only go the 10 or so feet to cross by it. Instead, I have to walk nearly 150 feet just to get around (300 total feet to get back to where I was)!

2.1.3 Workarounds

There are few known workarounds. One of which involves the flat mirrors. I use a technique I call "angle bisection". This method works by getting to a position close to the mirror's path and looking what's in the mirror. I then find the object shown in the mirror, map its position and bisect the angle (split it in half). This gives the angle the mirror is facing. I then calculate the width of the mirror and add 10% of my distance from the nearest edge of the mirror to create the "hazard zone". This technique does not work, however, with those stubborn curved mirrors. The curved mirrors are the worst. I take longer to find the object in the mirror, sometimes even twice as long, as it does for me to map the position, bisect the angle, and create the "hazard zone" from all those calculations.

2.1.4 A strange twist

Oddly enough, I have no trouble going in front of mirrors in my mind game (which is not reality). Seeing mirrors, even one on a monitor "pointing at me" doesn't affect me. It's not seeing myself either - I've seen myself only from pictures taken from cameras. It's simply walking in front of a mirror that's the hard part. I can do it in my mind game just fine, but not in reality. It doesn't add up.

2.2 Being in line

2.2.1 Origins

A long time ago, especially during my elementary years, I've never liked being in the middle or front of the line. Any time someone new has been added, I'd always let them go in front so I remain last. This originated from the effects of bullies. Fearing that a bully would pick on me from behind, the only way to avoid it was to make sure no one was behind at any time.

2.2.2 Progress made

I still somewhat have this as I get quite nervous. Instead, I just turn to face on a side so I can continually montitor both sides of my field of view. It's about the only progress toward fixing this and it does work pretty well. This fear is about halfway eliminated.

3 Old fears that have been overcome

3.1 Blue water

3.1.1 Origins

The origins of this fear is due mainly to my severe video game addiction. Back in those days, the graphics were of very low quality and the water was extremely blue. Although other colors were used, most of the time, it was a solid blue. In some games, if you jumped in, you'd die immediately. In other games, you could swim around in it without trouble (except that enemies did some damage, not the "blue water" itself). The origins date back to around 1989 or so. By my definition of "blue water", it's any puddle, swimming pool, or outdoor body of water. Showers and baths were considered "white water" instead. I believed that, if I simply touched it, as with those games, I'd die.

A screenshot taken from about 3 years ago of Mario 3 which shows blue water.

This screenshot, taken about 3 years ago, shows a typical case of blue water as seen in Mario 3 for the NES. In this game, the "blue water" is "safe" and you can stay in it almost forever (until the game clock hits zero anyway).

3.1.2 Fear events

Here are several events I recall involving this fear.

  1. I'm riding along in the "bus" I took to elementary school. Any time I brought up the subject about "blue water", I was told by the bus driver and her son "drop it" very often. For about 800 school days, I probably brought this subject up at least 1500 times total.
  2. During recess for elementary school, snow, being white, was okay, but spots of dried up "blue water" were dangerous and I had to avoid them. Some students, telling them that the "blue water" caused from snow melting was very dangerous and those students would step in it and touch it. This happened for several days (about 400 times total I'd have to say - roughly 70 times per school year of 180 school days).
  3. I recall going to the YMCA pool with one of my doctors (Charles I believe). He had a bucket and scooped up the water in the pool. He showed me that it wasn't blue and that it was the sides being painted blue. He didn't throw the water on me though, however.
  4. Another event I recall, run often in my mind game, is where two friends went into a hot tub, supposedly of a bluish green color in someones home and I refused to go in the hot tub for that reason as I believed that it was blue. I thought that those friends had some sort of special ability that prevented them from dying in the "blue water", a special ability that I didn't have.
  5. I recall watching something on Sesame Street about water coming from a lake (colored blue in the picture). There was a fish in the lake and the short cartoon featured conserving water. I figured that it was a drawing and not realistic.
  6. Board games that I've created featured "chances with death". On some spaces, I'd have a small tub, with waves inside to simulate water and someone either in the tub (bad thing) or outside the tub (good thing). If I landed on a space where the object was in the tub, I'd "lose a life" or went back several spaces. If I landed on a space where the object was not in the tub, I'd either gain an extra life or went forward several spaces. My board game I made recently (titled "Toxic River") features something similar but a bit different.

3.1.3 The fear gets defeated

July 21, 1997 at about 10:05 AM. That is the magical date at which the fear of "blue water" is defeated. I was at Triangle YMCA camp near Lake Sakakawea (sp.?). When I arrived at the Triangle YMCA camp on July 20, 1997 around noon, there were quite a few events that took place beforehand. First, there was the swim test. This occurred at around 4:00 PM. After that, it was eating time, then bedtime. On the second day, however, it was much different. There was breakfast at first, and then one or two activities. After those were over with, it was then "pond" where you can swim in a small pool of water outside. I have this area mapped out well in my mind and a fun place for my mind game and superhigh jumps.

At first, I was afraid to go into the water. One of the counselors there helped me out by getting rid of this long-lasting fear. I stood about 3 feet from shore while the counselor showed me about water. He eventually got me to take baby steps into the water and from that point on, I've gotten deeper and deeper. I reach my limit soon after, about neck deep. From there, I figured out how to crawl along on the railing. That went okay. I also figured out how to go underwater and how to float. From there, I didn't get much progress.

3.1.4 The "fear" today

Today, the only thing about water that I'm afraid of is where I can't touch bottom, but this is a common fear found among many others and thus really doesn't count. The fear of water as a whole still remains with video games though, but now that I rarely play them as it is, it doesn't matter. In video games, I try everything that I can think of to avoiding the "blue water", even if it is safe to go in.

Today, swimming is one of my favorite things, but, due to other issues (lack of availability of transportation mainly (short of paying $50 for a taxi on top of the $6 to go swimming at the YMCA)), I'm almost entirely unable to do it.

Before July 20, 1996, I would've never gone in at all or even wanted to

3.1.5 Studying physics = learned how to swim

In March or April of 2004, I finally learned how to swim. I took careful review of what I learned in physics and figured out a way for me to swim on my own. The method I use wears me down quite quickly (it may be because I don't exercise much). My range is very low due to this. I'm no where near that of the pros though.

3.2 Red ketchup and stage and yellow mustard bottles

3.2.1 Origins

The origins of this comes from my severe video game addiction and Metroid. In Metroid, when you had it where the screen scrolls horizontally, you had lava below, normally yellow, red, or pink (magenta is most likely). From this, even as early as first or second grade, anything that was a strong red or yellow (like the red carpeted stage in the basement of my elementary school, or the yellow mustard bottles during lunch) was considered to be "lava" as from Metroid.

3.2.2 Fear events

I don't recall much about this fear. For doing those performances I did in music class, I stood on the floor rather than on the stage. During lunch, whenever someone moved one of those ketchup or mustard bottles too close to me, I got up from my table asking them to move it elsewhere. I was often bullied about this. I don't recall much else though.

3.2.3 The fear gets solved

The fear was mostly solved due to some big punishment. I was forced to pick up a ketchup bottle and do something with it. I don't recall what though. I do recall that it took nearly 90 minutes for me to do it with the staff close to giving up on me. I don't recall anything else though.

3.2.4 The "fear" today

Today, the fear is practically gone. I've had a recent (in mid-2004) run-in with identical ketchup/mustard bottles as I saw in my elementary school. I was afraid to touch them, but I didn't fear being just a few inches from them although I was quite nervous about it.

4 Current problems

4.1 Stairs

4.1.1 Origins

The cause to the problem with stairs is not fully certain. It started sometime during my middle school years, early in 7th grade as far as I can think of. Before this, I had absolutely no trouble with stairs. To climb up stairs, I either have to walk on all fours using my hands to "pull" myself up as if it was a steep slope. Either that, or I'd "pull" myself up using the guard rails, if any.

Oddly enough, I have no trouble going up and down stairs correctly in my mind game.

4.1.2 Problem events

I have quite a few recalled events involving this problem.

  1. One of which is that I, at the time, pulled myself up at my middle school to get into the special classroom. I went between the boards on the side rather than using the stairs. The staff didn't like it so they forced me to do it the "normal" way and this issue got worse because of it.
  2. In my first high school I went to, which was three floors, I had to often throw the books in my bag or push them at a fairly high speed from the top them climb on all fours to get down. To go up, I had to use the pendulum effect to gain momentum and throw my books up when there was a clearance to avoid hitting anyone.
  3. When going down, I tend to speed up and when I get too fast, often near the bottom of small staircases, I jump where I have a lot of forward movement and I sometimes crash into a wall from it or make a big pounding sound from landing from a fall of about 3 or so feet.

4.1.3 Progress

Since 9th grade (late August 1999), the problem has neither improved nor gotten worse. It has remained otherwise the same.

4.2 Two six-letter p-words

4.2.1 Origins Indirect signs

The origins of this date back to when I was only around 9 years old. When I or my sister said the word "cool", we'd make a buzzing sound. I recorded this on tape several times, but don't have any known traces (and with over 50 tapes to search through, I'd need nearly a week to sort through all of them). The letter P

Shortly after, I soon got a related issue with the letter "P". I don't recall much on when it occurred or much about it. Kid-safe cartoon bad for me

This problem actually started as early as late 1997. I know as I had it in 7th grade but doubtfully in 6th grade. During this time, I was watching a cartoon. The cartoon was an action cartoon otherwise safe for children. In this cartoon, some of the characters, with green hair, were saying of saving their [insert bad word here]. The way they used it triggered this and it has been with me since. I no longer write, speak, or read the word aloud. I can, however, only very indirectly mention it (more directly through a bunch of clues).

The two "bad" words are:
1. A single human. Has the same beginning sound of "purse", the thing females carry around often. (used in a common phrase: "meet in ______")
2. Multiple humans as a group. Has the same ending syllable (for the sound) as "apple" and the same beginning sound as "P" as said as a letter. (Fill in the blank: "A stadium holds about 50,000 ______.")

4.2.2 Problem events The 3's and 1's crossout system

On school papers or anything copied as worksheets (but not textbooks), I'd take my pencil and really scratch that word out until it was completely covered. The scratching stuff began in the 8th grade, possibly the 7th grade. To explain what I mean by this, consider this example, of the exact same question. The left is the original and the right is what I'd do to it.

The original way [with the endings of the p-words blanked out]:

28. On one day, a baseball stadium had 31,988 peo___. Four peo___ were going to win an all-exclusive seat in the front row near their favorite team. What are the chances that one per___ of the group was a winner?
The editted way [with p-words crossed out nearly invisible]:

28. On one day, a baseball stadium had 31,988 peo___. Four peo___ were going to win an all-exclusive seat in the front row near their favorite team. What are the chances that one per___ of the group was a winner?

3 3 1 3

You'll have to look closely to catch the p-word scratchouts. The colors are quite accurate to what normal paper, ink and pencil are. How the system works

Also, at the top or bottom of the page in the margins [or where there is a large space of white], I write a bunch of numbers at the top, mostly 1's and 3's. In this case, you'll see two 3's and one 1. I still use this system today, mainly in forums in quoted replies where the word is used a lot and on any spam postal mail I get. Here's how the number system worked, exactly the way it was and still is. Examples on the system's scoring

1. The example in the table shown would yield 2 3's and a one, totalling 7 points. The high frequency bonus adds 3 bonus making 10 points. If the second p-word was in bold and hyphenated, that word would be worth 7 points, making the grand total 14 points instead of 10.

2. To get the highest possible score, the word would have to be peo___, bold, italic, underline, font size 48, and hyphenated. This single word would be worth 800 points [3 for the base word 2 for bold 2 for italics 2 for underline 32 for maximum font size +32 for hyphenation, and 322232+32=768+32=800]! I'd note this as "A800".

4.2.3 Progress

Although I never say, type, write, speak, or otherwise use the word, the closest I get is "puh" and "human" to denote a single human and "puhs" and "humans" to denote a group of humans. "Puh" is pronounced as "PUH" and I rarely use this form. The last time the word was said was in 2001 when I was on a train ride with one of my friends (see section 2 of the special events page for details on this). It was an accident and my face got hot soon after. It was the 1-point version of the bad word.

4.3 Chairs

4.3.1 Origins

This started more around when I was 12 years old or so. At this time, I've always slept on the floor. This is the very origins of this and the problem progressed very slowly. By around 2000 or so, I started calling chairs "icky stinky chairs" or something like that and by 2001, the problem has reached it's current state but hasn't improved or gotten worse since.

Today, about the only thing I use is the floor. I eat on the floor (using a plate as one normally would), use my computer on the floor (with the monitor just 2 feet above the ground, the keyboard about a foot above the ground, and the mouse just 8 1/4 inches above the ground), sleep on the floor, do just about everything on the floor.

4.3.2 Problem events

When I was trying to get my ID card updated, I was told to sit on the chair to do it. Rather than the chair, I figured that if I knelt down on my knees, I'd be almost the same height. It went okay though. Another thing involves getting a needle poked into me for testing. First it was because I had a fear of mirrors so staff took me through another route. Then, it was because I had a problem with chairs. They then wondered if I had a problem with needles, but in that case, I didn't.

Anytime I'm in a waiting room as for a doctor appointment, I always use the floor. When I went to Canada on Jun 20, 2005, I had to wait nearly 90 minutes for my mom to do her dentist stuff. I was on the floor writing things down, often math. I never used the chairs.

4.3.3 Progress

This problem hasn't gotten any worse or better since 12th grade. 12th grade, during August or early September of 2002, was the last time I used a chair. Car seats, booths in restaurants, and a few other things don't count as "chairs".

4.4 Whistling

4.4.1 Origins

I can recall problems with whistling as early as even 3rd grade. In music class, there was one song played that had whistling in it. I hated it and always had to plug my ears. The exact cause that started it is not fully known.

Anytime someone whistles, I get mad easily. I have, however, been able to control it better. If the one doesn't stop, I then tell them in an angrier voice. If it continues, I get out of the area as quickly as possible.

4.4.2 Problem events

I don't recall much in the way of events with this, besides having that event in music class. Repeat whistlers when I can't escape, however, have led to physical fights, but staff break up the fight quickly.

4.4.3 Progress - the cause is known

Unlike most of the others, this problem has had some progress toward fixing it. I'm able to control my anger better than I used to. The other thing is that I think I now know the cause to it. I've noticed that, when I played a pure sine wave in my sound program, I noticed that, whenever I played frequencies above 3000 Hz (not 3000 samples per second), I don't like it and quickly press the stop button. For music, I always have frequencies above 3KHz at the lowest possible setting. This is the most likely cause to this happening. 3K on equalizers is more around the "no change" mark, sometimes lower. Whistling is about this same frequency. I also hate loud music (my music is often around 50 dB). When one whistles, it can be 70 dB or higher and thus it's the combination of it being high-pitched and loud that makes me have problems with whistling.

4.5 Silverware usage

4.5.1 Origins

The origins of this date back in my early elementary school days. It probably started in 2nd grade, perhaps 1st grade or even kindergarten. The cause is unknown. Basically, I will not use any silverware except a specific type with a particular design and shape.

4.5.2 Problem events

One thing I recall involving this is where I was in my elementary school. I did something causing a punishment. I was forced to eat pudding using the school spoons which weren't even close to the spoons at my house at the time. I was in the time out room for even 1 1/2 days or so because I wouldn't eat it. I know it extended into a second day. The pudding was good, the spoon was the hard part.

A second thing that I recall is where my family changed silverware. I was forced to use it. I wasn't allowed to get my telescope for Christmas until I use those new pieces of silverware. I did eventually switch, but it took nearly 6 hours....

4.5.3 Progress

Today, this issue still exists, but it's not as bad as it was. It appears that, where the handle at the other end is wide, I wouldn't use it, but if it remained constant, it was okay then. This is also one of those problems that has had some progress.

4.6 Spot-free dishes only

4.6.1 Origins

The origins to this is completely unknown. I don't even have any clues.

This problem is where any dishes I use must be spotless. If there's even one small spec that I detect, the dish will not be used. The spec can be even an 128th of an inch in size and I would notice it.

4.6.2 Problem events

I don't have much recalled about this. When I went to a restaurant nearly 3 years ago, when a bowl was not clean, I noticed it and didn't use it. I went through like 3 bowls to get a good one. There were small food particles on them, a piece of a yellowish-green plant-like thing about 1/64 of an inch wide by 1/8 of an inch long. Another had a tiny spec 1/64 of an inch in diameter.

4.6.3 Progress

Unlike most of the others, this problem has gotten worse, only slightly. Earlier, it was 1/32 of an inch for a threshold. Today, it's now as small as even 1/128th of an inch. I can detect something as fine as 1/512th of an inch, but that is extremely difficult to do. With a smaller threshold, more spots can be found, but there isn't much of an increase as the bulk of the missed spots are around 1/32 of an inch or bigger.

4.7 Stain-free clothes only

4.7.1 Origins

The origins of this aren't known either. It probably relates to the fact that I once had 80 pairs of stained underwear (!). By this time, I'd often spend nearly 25 minutes (or more) just to find a pair of underwear (rarely, it could take over 40 minutes). My parents didn't want me to discard them so I had to keep them. I then went with colored underwear and now, any time I find a stained one, I just throw it off in a corner not to be seen again. Shirts, pants, towels, and other clothing are also the same. Today, it takes nearly 15 minutes for me to find a towel. It's faster for me to dry off naturally (through evaporation) than it does to find a towel. For about two years now, I've taken showers without using towels as it's just simply faster that way.

4.7.2 Problem events

By the time I reached about 80 pairs of stained underwear, I had to take new measures to reduce the count. 80 was getting to be rediculous so I found a way to work around that. I probably have 30 shirts or so that are stained, 12 pairs of pants, 2 swimsuits, and 25 towels (only 2 or 3 others are good which causes me to take so long to find a towel). These numbers are so big compared to what most have, some of my stained clothing, despite being washed like 5 times, has been donated or even to my father who doesn't mind. There's so much underwear, you'd have to wait more than 2 months before underwear needs to be washed for my dad. Yowsers!

4.7.3 Progress

This problem has had no progress to getting rid of it, but I have had some progress in weakening its impact.

5 Old problems that have been overcome

5.1 Sun-lit ground = lava

5.1.1 Origins

Around first or second grade, due to excessive playing of Metroid, I considered sun-lit areas (where sunlight was reaching the ground and not blocked by anything) as "lava". Although it was warmer, it was no where near as hot as lava.

5.1.2 Problem events

When it came to recess during my elementary years, I recall that, when it was sunny out, I stayed by the doors rather than going out. When it was cloudy (normally from an overcast sky), it was okay to go out until the sun came back again. This is about the only recalled event I have involving this.

5.1.3 The problem gets solved

I don't recall how the problem got solved, unfortunately, nor do I even have a clue. I do recall, however, that it was a short-lasting problem that lasted probably a few months.

5.1.4 The problem today

Today, I have no trouble with this. My eyes are dark-adapted (very used to dark conditions - typical of indoor settings) and since I rarely go out, I'm almost never involved with the Sun.

5.2 Shadows were enemies

5.2.1 Origins

This is yet another stupid one. The origin is unknown, but my severe video game addiction may have had a part in it. It started likely in 3rd or 4th grade. The problem was that any moving shadow (such as from a dog moving or someone else moving) was an "enemy" and I had to avoid it otherwise I'd lose "health".

5.2.2 Problem events

During recess, I'd walk around and if someone's shadow was "in the way", I'd have to jump over it to avoid it. If I landed and was touching the shadow then, I'd "take damage".

5.2.3 The problem gets solved

Like the one above, I don't know how the problem got solved. I don't have a clue either and like the one above, it lasted only for a few months, though longer.

5.2.4 The problem today

Today, I still do such a thing, but only when I'm bored and I very rarely do it. I only do it for fun and games, but otherwise is not a problem.

5.3 Grass was spikes

5.3.1 Origins

This is yet another stupid one that I had. The origins to this, unlike the other two, is due to my severe video game addiction. Grass, if you look at it, looks kind of like spikes, green spikes (or brown if in the winter time). Spikes in video games, if you land on them, take your health away. I thought that grass, because it was similar in shape, was spikes so I avoided it entirely just as one would do in a video game.

5.3.2 Problem events

One well-recalled event is when I was at a friend's house just 3 houses down the road. A bigger friend about 5 or 6 years older than me, played a small game and got me in the grass. After that, I pretended I was dead thinking that I was going to die, but strangely enough it didn't happen. I recall a comment from him saying that I was still alive and he knew it.

5.3.3 The problem gets solved

See the area directly above for how it got solved. This problem lasted for probably 3 months or so.

5.3.4 The problem today

Today, I have absolutely no trouble with grass. The one thing that I am afraid of are those weeds with pointing things on it that actually do hurt when you step on them, but that isn't the grass itself.

6 Current obsessions

When I find something that I like a lot, having a high compatibility, I can get severely obsessed with something, even over weird things. These are my current obsessions (as of Dec 12, 2005).

6.1 Small t's have tee-tails

6.1.1 Origins

The origins to this obsession come from the Courier font and the extremely long t-tail it has for the lower case T. Almost all other fonts have a t-tail, but of varying lengths. With Arial, it's there, but extremely short. With Courier, it's extremely long. With "Century Gothic", the T's don't have t-tails at all. The start of this was around 2001 or so.

I exaggerate the sound of the letter "T" when it has a t-tail. The longer the t-tail, the more exaggerated and prolonged it gets. If the T has no t-tail, the T would be quickly pronounced.

This shows the lowercase T in 14 different fonts that all have t-tails in them, both long and short.

6.1.2 Obsession events

I don't recall much involving this. Only general things. When I read anything with long t-tails, I tend to take a lot longer to read them. Otherwise, with very short t-tails or no t-tails at all, I'd read through text more quickly (at around 240 syllables per minute (120 words per minute about)).

6.1.3 Progress

This obsession has weakened quite a bit so, in other words, a lot of progress has been made.

6.2 That G is screwed up

6.2.1 Origins

Very much like that of the t's having t-tails obsession, this obsession is very similar. In fact, it's so similar that this obsession is a spinoff from the t-tails one. This originated around September of 2005, thus very recently. About half of the fonts have lowercase g's that look like a small j (without the dot) and the letter O joined to it at the top left part g. The other half, the part with my obsession, is where you have a flattened circle on the bottom, a normal circle on top a little to the left from center with spacing between these two, an arc (about 50 to 60) connecting these two circles, and a stem coming from the top circle at about the 1 o'clock position going to the right straight across (sometimes a little upwards).

6.2.2 Obsession events

"Doug is giggling about digging in the frozen ground" - Arial, the default font used on my website.

"Doug is giggling about digging in the frozen ground" - Times New Roman, a font that uses the "screwed up g".

I'd be saying the top line completely different from the bottom. The bottom line is where I'd exaggerate and prolong the sound of the lowercase G. If the G makes the sound as in "giraffe", I'd use the sound of the G in "igloo" if the lowercase G was "screwed up".

6.2.3 Progress

Although not as intense as it was around November, this obsession has improved some. Any time I see a "screwed up" lowercase G, I'd flag it. Sometimes, with my finger, I'd draw the lowercase G with 97% of it being drawn in one continuous line.

6.3 Two-tailed fox = blue water

6.3.1 Origins

Since mid-2003, when I first tried the classic Sonic games, I've been extremely involved with drowning Tails, the two-tailed fox. I'd toss the fox in the blue water, wait 30 seconds (more if it surfaces) for it to drown and get the new fox in which I'll put that one in the blue water and repeat.

6.3.2 Obsession events

I have several key events involving this. function blue_water()

You'll see this in my blog around May 2005 or so. With my game development stuff going on, I write functions to get the game to work. I took this and turned it into something relating to drowning the two-tailed fox. It goes something like this:

function blue_water()
   while(1) // a loop that is always true
      if (fox.position == in_blue_water) // if the fox is in the blue water
         fox.health = 0; // the fox dies as it's health is being set to 0
      if (fox.position != in_blue_water) // if the fox is not in the blue water
         fox.wants_to_get_wet = true; // flag being set to true to make the fox want to get wet
      wait(1); // process once each game frame

I've later made changes to this which would add this:

function blue_water()
   while(1) // a loop that is always true
      if (liquid.color != blue) // if the liquid (the water) is not blue
         liquid.color = blue; // the liquid (the water) becomes blue

      if (fox.position == in_blue_water) // if the fox is in the blue water
         fox.health = 0; // the fox dies as it's health is being set to 0
      if (fox.position != in_blue_water) // if the fox is not in the blue water
         fox.wants_to_get_wet = true; // flag being set to true to make the fox want to get wet
      wait(1); // process once each game frame

Anything after // on a line indicates a comment. I'm commenting out what each part in the script does. Semicolons denote the end of a statement, typical after any single equals (=; double equals (==) is used in comparisons (loops and if statements) meaning "exactly equals"). My mind game and the fox and blue water

In my mind game, I sometimes, but rarely, have cases where I can choose to send the two-tailed fox from some high cliff into regular water, blue water, mud, or lava (sometimes another one is involved). I had to battle the fox to get it to go off the cliff. Sometimes it'd end up in the blue water and 30 seconds after touch it (even if it gets out), it dies. 30 seconds only

Another thing relating to it is that, as soon as the fox touches blue water, it'll die in 30 seconds. Sometimes, I turn my house into a game and at a set height above the floor, normally 2 feet, I'd toss the fox over and try to get it in the "blue water" and hope it lands on something rather than only the floor (the floor equates to a bottomless pit where it won't drown).

6.3.3 Progress

It gets better, then it gets worse, then it gets better again, then it gets worse. That's the progress of this obsession. At times, it'll get better. Then, suddenly, it'll get worse then improve again later on. This has almost been happening nonstop since 2004 so I cannot really say if it has improved overall or not.

6.4 Twenty-twoism

6.4.1 Origins

The origins of this isn't quite fully clear. I think it may have originated from the t-tails thing, but then twenty-eight, twenty-three, thirty-two, and others have the same number of t's so that's quite unlikely.

I generally consider the number "22" as "bad luck" or my "unlucky number". Other numbers with more 2's in them (and if all 2's) like 222, 2222, 22,222, etc. are less "bad luck" and less commonly run into.

6.4.2 Obsession events

I don't recall anything involving this directly.

6.4.3 Progress

From the start, this obsession has become less intense.

6.5 Dot and some trash

6.5.1 Origins

When doing high-precision calculations that involve division or fractions and it doesn't come out evenly, I often get a decimal. For computer graphics, decimals aren't the best thing to get. Like, for example, when drawing something in 3D, I have to have the vertices at an exact position. Let's say that a point was 5 units to the left, 3 units up, and 9 units distant. I'm using a 640x480 image. From my 3D math formula, the X position of this vertex would be at -177.77777... and the Y position of this vertex would be at 106.66666.... When it comes to plotting the points, I have to get rid of the "trash" after the decimal leaving -177 and 106.

In my mind, when doing math in my mind, when I get a dot and trash after it, it can get tricky to use high precision. I use "nearest common fraction" to work around this for moderate precision which can be twice as fast (or even faster) otherwise. I tend to laugh when I get the decimal (the "dot") and the "trash" after it.

6.5.2 Obsession events

See above for one typical case of this. There are numerous events. Sometimes, to get nice sky fading, I tend to use square roots. Working around the "dot and some trash" issue since I can only use integer values, often gets tricky.

6.5.3 Progress

This obsession has neither improved nor gotten worse. I sometimes find it funnier though, but that's about it.

7 Old obsessions

7.1 Q at the end of every word

7.1.1 Origins

The origins of this are related to running a spell check. It started when I was in 7th or 8th grade. When I ran a spell check on some document in MSWorks 4.5a, I sometimes got "not in dictionary" or "irregular capitalization". I found this funny. Then, I created a document and added a captial Q at the end of every word. I especially liked the capital Q of the Arial font (a tie-in with the T's having t-tails and the "screwed up" G's above) and this played a role.

Right way: I jumped nearly fifteen feet high in my mind game. Isn't it lovely when you have too many Q's at the end of every word?
Q-ed up way: IQ jumpedQ nearlyQ fifteenQ feetQ highQ inQ myQ mindQ gameQ. Isn'tQ itQ lovelyQ whenQ youQ haveQ tooQ manyQ Q'sQ atQ theQ endQ ofQ everyQ wordQ?

The spell check will likely skip over "IQ" as it stands for "Intelligence quotient".

7.1.2 Obsession events

The most recalled event is where I ran a spell check on about 250 or so words having a Q at end of all of them and using the spell check to see what came up and possible suggestions. Some words came up with even 15 suggestions while others, though rare, were correct as is. This could be an interesting way to learn new words too.

Not just in typing, but speech as well. I'd say a word, and add the sound from the first sound of "quilt" at the end of it. It sounds kind of funny too.

7.1.3 The obsession gets solved

The cause to how this obsession got solved is unknown. I don't have any clues though. I can say, however, that this was only a short-lived obsession.

7.2 Spell check fun

7.2.1 Origins

When doing homework that involved typing stuff or when typing one of my first stories, I ran the spell checker. The spell checker found a few mistakes. When I kept seeing "not in dictionary" and "irregular capitalization", I found it funny. In addition to the Q's at the end of every word, sometimes it was J's or any other letter that was randomized.

7.2.2 Obsession events

I don't recall much other than what I described above.

7.2.3 The obsession gets solved

Just like the Q's at the end of every word thing, I don't know how this obsession was solved nor do I have a single clue. It, like the other one, was short-lived.

4.1 About me home - General overview and background
4.1-1 What this is
4.1-2 My current life
4.1-3 The future
4.2 Dream journal - My dreams I get while sleeping - contains over 500 dreams and grows rapidly
4.2-1 Introduction
4.2-2 Special notes
4.2-3 Dream stat descriptions
4.2-4 Dream statistics
4.2-5 The categories
4.3 Favorites - What I like and dislike most
4.4 Imaginary friends - Learn what my imaginary friends were like and their special abilities
4.4-1 History
4.4-2 In depth descriptions
4.4-3 The future
4.5 Video games - My history with video games and the many bad things they caused
4.5-1 The beginning
4.5-2 Too much video game playing
4.5-3 Making my own games
4.5-4 The future
4.6 School - Learn what school was like for me, how the classes went, and other events related to school
4.6-1 Elementary school
4.6-2 Middle school
4.6-3 High school
4.6-4 Filling my need for education
4.6-5 My education future
4.7 Special events - Learn about how YMCA camp, tours, and other special events went for me
4.7-1 Triangle YMCA camp
4.7-2 Touring my home state with my friend
4.7-3 Shakespearian play
4.7-4 The state fair
4.7-5 The antique car club
4.7-6 Trip into Canada
4.8 Math skills - I can work wonders with numbers and perform calculations in my head at a blazing fast speed
4.8-1 Well beyond most everyone else
4.8-2 I became unforunate
4.8-3 Super fast mental math
4.8-4 If object gets numbers, I get a formula
4.8-5 The future
4.9 Special abilities - The special capabilities I have outside mathematics
4.9-1 General
4.9-2 Hypercount
4.9-3 High-speed, high-accuracy mental math
4.9-4 High-res vision
4.10 Developed systems - Status System, Spell System and other systems I've developed
4.10-1 My Status System
4.10-2 My Spell System
4.10-3 Color system
4.11 Stories - The birth of my story-writing efforts
4.11-1 The "Wonderful Adventure" days
4.11-2 The "Rise of Atlantis" days
4.11-3 One other story
4.11-4 No more story writing
4.11-5 My sources of ideas
4.11-6 The future (general)
4.12 Online activities - The history of my website and the usage of online forums
4.12-1 Online forums
4.12-2 My website
4.13 Music - My history with music - learn the origins to why I listen to songs at different speeds for thousands of loops at a time
4.13-1 History
4.13-2 The present
4.13-3 The future
4.13-4 Music FAQs
4.14 Major fears - My list of fears, problems, and obsessions, both past and present
4.14-1 Introduction
4.14-2 Current fears
4.14-3 Old fears that have been overcome
4.14-4 Current problems
4.14-5 Old problems that have been overcome
4.14-6 Current obsessions
4.14-7 Old obsessions
4.15 Major issues - Major issues I have in my life at the moment
4.15-1 Fears, problems, and obsessions
4.15-2 Sleep-wake cycle
4.15-3 No transportation
4.15-4 Showers are rare
4.15-5 My annoying nose
4.15-6 Limited choice of foods
4.15-7 Getting a job
4.16 TV and movies - How I am with watching TV and movies, both past and present
4.16-1 History
4.16-2 The present
4.16-3 The future
4.16-4 FAQ
4.17 Food and drink - My history with food and drink, including past meals I made, as well as the present and future
4.17-1 History
4.17-2 The present
4.17-3 The future
4.18 Travel and vacations - Past vacations and travel, as well as the current case of 6+ years without a vacation, including places of interest
4.18-1 History
4.18-2 The present
4.18-3 The future
4.18-4 FAQ
4.19 My senses - Things involving my 5 main senses - strong, high-res vision, but very weak smell to name some
4.19- [document yet to be created]
4.20 Doctors and meds - My past involving doctor visits and meds to fixing my issues as well as the present
4.20- [document yet to be created]
4.21 Hobbies - My hobbies, including things I was involved with in the past not in any other category
4.21-1 History
4.21-2 Computer
4.21-3 Sports
4.21-4 Collecting
4.21-5 Television
4.21-6 The present
4.21-7 The future
4.22 Game design - My history of game design as well as the present and possible future
4.22-1 History
4.22-2 The present
4.22-3 The future
4.23 Noncomputer games - Backgrounds on various noncomputer games, such as throwing cards to play Hit-a-bump and other things, including past games not listed on my website, as well as general evolvements and what caused me to create them.
4.23- [document yet to be created]
4.24 Other memorable events - General events I recall unusually well, but not anything special
4.24- [document yet to be created]
4.25 Other things - Dates, marriage, having kids, friends, religion, holidays, and various other things
4.25- [document yet to be created]
4.26 Myself in the year 2050 - How I envision myself and a day in the year 2050
4.26- [document yet to be created]
4.27 My greatest wishes - Activities I would love to do

There are no footnotes for this page.