Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The Confession

I have a secret. I am not proud of what I am about to confess to you, but confess I will. I have a phobia. Wikipedia defines 'phobia' as thus:

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

A phobia (from the Greek: φόβος, phóbos, fear or morbid fear), is an irrational, intense, persistent fear of certain situations, activities, things, or people. The main symptom of this disorder is the excessive, unreasonable desire to avoid the feared subject. When the fear is beyond one's control, and if the fear is interfering with daily life, then a diagnosis under one of the anxiety disorders can be made.[1]

"A phobia of what?' you ask. Okay, let me take a deep breath before I continue and tell myself I can share almost anything with you and you will still return to my blog and read my daily musings.

Here it comes.


I suffer from acridophobia.

The family of orthopterous insects which includes the true locusts and the grasshoppers with short antennae.
Acrididae is the name of a large and diverse family of insects (order Orthoptera) which consists of the locusts and true grasshoppers. There are about 7,000 species in 1,100 genera.

acridophage, acridophagous, acridophagy
Feeding on, consuming, or eating grasshoppers.
Hunter-gathers eating grasshoppers at acridophagy.

Fondness for grasshoppers.
An abnormal fear of grasshoppers and locusts.

Yup. My name is Beej. And I am an acridophobic.

Okay, how did this come about, you might ask. It's all because of Eddie Magarvo. (Yes Eddie, I am putting your real name here because you caused me a lot of suffering over the years not to mention a ton of extra footwork, walking blocks and blocks around my house so as not to have to walk past a grasshopper! I hate you, Eddie Magarvo and if you ever have the misfortune of crossing my path, I WILL hurt you.)

This is the story. When I was a very very little girl, I loved nothing better than to start my day by standing in the front yard and watching the 'big kids' walk to school. my folks had installed a fence around our yard (mostly to keep me prisoner because even at this tender age I had a bad habit of taking off as soon as the opportunity to do so presented itself.) Anyway, every morning Eddie would walk by and every morning I would say "hi Eddie!" and every morning Eddie would throw a grasshopper in my face. (I hate you Eddie Magarvo.)

Now you would think that after this happened one or two times, I would know not to say "Hi Eddie!" to this mean moron. Not so. This went on for weeks. And every single morning I would have a large grasshopper thrown in my little face.

Eventually it did dawn on me; Do not say "hi" to Eddie Magarvo! But the damage was done, and I was left with this horrible phobia.

Now, you might rightly say, "But Beej! You feed your lizards crickets and seem to have no problem with that!" And you would be correct. But as much as crickets and grasshoppers resemble one another, they are not the same! A cricket is a cricket and a grasshopper is, well, a grasshopper.

And so, I am on a mission to face my fears, and as part of that process, I vow to study this photo daily until it doesn't bother me any longer:

And now, my kind and sympathetic friends, I think I need to go lie down and recover.



  1. Such a sad story! Perhaps this confession will go some way toward resolving the problem itself. If not, I wonder if there may be some medication available. . . .

  2. Okay, well now that I've seen that revolting photo I think I have a phobia about grasshoppers!

    What a scary looking bug!

    I think a little revulsion about snakes and insects is pretty normal...even healthy. I mean they are sometimes actually dangerous. But fortunately they are also amazing and interesting.

    I'm okay with insects ass long as I see them before they see me. I can appreciate them to some degree. My nephew is crazy about lizards,snakes and insects. So I've taken him to those sections in the zoo a lot but we trade off with me getting to go to the bats and primates.

    I have a friend who is dead afraid of snakes (and fish) and she got some hypnotism and relaxation meditation work done and she's not in love with them...but she can handle seeing them now. I think your idea of looking at the photo is a pretty good one and that is what she did was meditate to a pic of snakes.

    I know you can do this! Go Beej!

  3. Thanks, my dear friends. I know i can do this. I know I will not need meds to do this. I know I can learn to live with these disgusting creatures. As long as they don't live any where near me.

  4. I hope that when the name “Eddie Magarvo” is googled this blog entry does not pop up. He might then be refused employment, denied credit, audited by the I.R.S., or any number of untoward things.

  5. Steve, I will take an ad out on google and help speed up the process!

  6. I was just thinking a few days ago about bullying and hey Eddie was a bully. Children can be so unkind to each other. I bet we can all recall someone like that from our school days. Mine was to do with heights and two older girls who hung me and my friend Noreen over the banisters on the third or fourth floor of a stairwell in the break at a danse class. I only recalled the event a few years back and it has taken me a long time but although I am still very cautious and apprenhensive about being off ground level I can do it and last year I did climb to the top of the tallgallant when on the boat. I was so chuffed I made it. You will to Beej, being determined to do it is half the battle - no meds necessary. Go Beej!

  7. Sheila, i am so proud of you for cimbing to the top of the tallgallant! Way to go!!!

    Chuffed is my new word. I am determined to be chuffed!

  8. I also, as I just researched and found a name for my fear, am a Acridophobic. I am 30 and have been dealing with this since I was a child. My older brother and his friends and my uncle and even my own father thought it was hillarious to see me jump everytime I walked in the house as they sat on the couch and pretended to throw something my way which I always thought to be a grasshopper even if nothing was in their hand. At one point I remember standing in the road with my brother and his friends. One of his friends asked me, are you afraid of grasshoppers? I figured if I said yes, surely one would be thrown at me and so I said no, just to have it thrown in my hair anyways. I could see it hanging from my hair so close to my face. I swung my hair insanely til it fell and then ran inside crying and swinging my head still and screaming. My mother who was acrossed the street heard me from inside her friends house and came home and put me in the shower which seemed to calm me down. This is only one of my encounters with the nasty little bastards that I had when I was younger but now I have terrible nightmares and the sight of them makes me tremble, my eyes tear, I start to breath heavily, and my heart beat is rapid. My husband thinks I'm silly which kinda pisses me off because obviously I know that, but don't care to hear him belittle my fear. I was happy to read about your story though, to know that there is someone just as silly as me. I would like to not be afraid of those things but if that means that I have to get close or God forbid touch one then I'm thinking I will continue to just steer clear. I have to say after reading your story and feeling all all warm and fuzzy that there was someone like me and then scrolling to see that pic of that grasshopper completely caught me by surpirse and again the tears are flowing and the breathing is rapid. Uck... Thank God I haven't seen any of those kind in Florida. The ones that I run most into here are the Eastern Lubbers. Crafty little devils start out as a small black grasshopper and then split open and out pops this huge colorful nasty beast. My mother-n-law the hypnotherapist, tries to convince me they are peaceful insects and I need to become friends with them. But I'm not so for sure if that is gonna work for me.

  9. Hi Anon, why would you need to befriend something that scares tha crap out of you? Nonsense! Hey, everyone has a fear and this happens to be ours. the way i look at it, let others get over it.

    There are no huge ones around here either or I would need to buy myself a tank and declare war. har.

    Seriously, Im glad my writing about this helped someone else.

  10. I just found out that my phobia of grasshoppers is called acridophobia, and I actually got curious to know if there is some kind of remedy for it, so I found this blog. If I try to understand when did this start from, I wouldn't know surely. When I was younger, 10 years old maybe (I'm 20 now) I would go to my grandfathers farm and these crapy creatures didn't bother me at all, but with growing up I seem to have created a huge fear to myself, from them. I can't cross on the roud if i see one of them, I can't leave the window open at night because I'm afraid one could come in (and I leave on the 6-th floor in a citty). When see any of them on my dreams I find myself barely breathing when I wake up, and my heart seems to be jumping out of my chest. People keep telling me that they can't hurt me, but it doesn't work this way! They are so disgusting, nasty and unneccesery and I swear if I could I would definetly make them dissapear from
    earth! (some other huge insects too :p)
    p.s"I HATED you when I saw that awful picture!!"


Go ahead, you can do it! Just whistle if you want me. You know how to whistle, don't you? You just put your lips together and BLOW....

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