Watching a plane in the sky, there’s nothing more liberating. It flies off into the world, taking people to random places so they can travel, move, lay over, visit family, anything. These massive metal structures can fucking fly, and I’m sitting here feeling the impossible. As the bird gets smaller in the sky, there’s nothing to stop me watching it crash down, come hurtling out of the blue.
These visions are becoming more prominent. It’s not like the Final Destination bullshit where one kids sees his death and thus prevents everyone else around him from being killed by a pipe or a tanning bed. That’s stupid. I find my brain jumps to a special effects reel 90% of the time. Cars crash, people are hurt, buildings fall over, and bridges give out, boats sink, all in my mind.
I live in a 24-story building about half way up. As my elevator climbs 11 stories to take me to the gym, I wonder when the day will come that the elevator wires will snap sending me, screaming, hurtling into the ground, through the lobby floor and into the parking garage. The odds of someone dying in an elevator accident is 1 in 10,440,000. Fucking splatter on the ground. Looking out the window on the 22nd floor, I feel the building swaying in the wind, bending and bending until it snaps. I imagine clinging to the railings and window frames but eventually I have to let go. Fucking splatter on the ground.
It’s not just airplanes and elevators, although those things are freaks of nature and gravity-defying beyond my physical comprehension. We shouldn't be able to defy gravity, but that’s another issue. It started in a car. It’s always worse in the car. The brakes lights, swerving, traffic, it has buried itself in my brain and I can’t get it out. Driving in the city is fine, lots of stops and controlled driving. The highway is a long, gray path to imminent death, I’m sure of it.
It’s funny how scary things aren't very scary in the day light It’s like the sun chases away the monsters. But in cars, it’s the opposite, day light allows people to see farther and take more risks. I find my palms wet in cars, sweaty from pressing them together between my legs. Sometimes I dig my nails into my hands to focus on something besides the life-shredding concrete outside. I've mostly managed to keep my gasping under control, I guess it distracts him from the actual driving because he thinks something is wrong. But something is wrong, we’re going to crash and I can’t stop seeing it in my mind, playing it over and over in my mind. The odds of someone dying in a car accident are 1 in 73.89. It’s not splatter into the ground, it’s skin tearing, organ piercing, skidding, mangling, shredding into darkness.
I had a panic attached in the subway, that’s when I realized I may be developing an actual anxiety towards modes of transportation and heights. We were just sitting there, in the subway tunnel. I was engrossed in a book at the time so I didn’t notice just how long. I looked out the window, which exists in subways for an unknown reason to me, and all I could see was concrete walls. Dark walls, rough walls, no room to fit between the wall and the subway car, it was just inches from the window. Then I noticed just how small the space was.
I imagined another subway train, like a long silver bullet, smashing into the back of us, sending our cars hurtling into the back of another train. The metals would collide, sending that unbearable metal crunching into my bones. In those tubes in the ground, there’s nowhere to go. How would I get out? I imagine scrambling over broken doors and people, pushing myself to find a way out, to live.
As my breathes quicken and my heart races, the train starts moving.