My name is Mark Carbonza. I am afflicted by many irrational fears and aversions. This column is dedicated to my journey in explaining my fears, but then conquering them.
This week’s fear is heights!
WHY HEIGHTS FREAK ME OUT
UH, YOU MEAN BESIDES THE OBVIOUS POINT BEING THAT THEY’RE ACTUALLY MORE OF A CONCEPT THAN A THING?!
Some people might be charmed by the new perspective they earn when they’re up really high. Those people must think “Man, I’m a giant from up here! I can probably crush those buildings if I take a step on them.”
NO! DON’T DO IT! That’s the heights talking! They switch up how you see the world so that you forget that you are only human and not actually a giant human! Trippy! I know!
Why else do heights freak me out? Uh, hello? Are we birds? No! I don’t think I belong anywhere high because if I try to jump, I get a couple of feet in the air and I’m back down. If I was supposed to be up there longer than I was, I’d have levitated, duh. Trust your body, dummies!
Heights also is just an acronym for ‘Hey, everybody! I got here: the sky!” I don’t know about you, but I spend a lot of time in my basement (okay, my mother’s) and that’s where I’m most comfortable. Something about being underground, in the womb of the Earth’s crust that makes me feel like there’s something so natural about the indoors and unnatural about sky! Ew! Sky!
WHY YOU SHOULD BE FREAKED OUT BY THEM
JUST TRUST ME, OKAY?! LIKE OH MY GOD WHY WOULD I BE AFRAID OF THEM IF YOU SHOULDN’T TOO?! I KNOW IT’S IRRATIONAL BUT LIKE IT’S ALSO A LITTLE RATIONAL! WAKE UP, SKEEPLE!
THE PLAN OF ACTION
- Acquire a ladder. DO NOT USE IT, YET!
- Participate in a human pyramid. START AT THE BOTTOM!
- Use the ladder.
- Participate in a human pyramid. MIDDLE, THIS TIME!
- Watch wrestling cage matches.
- Participate in human pyramid. STRAIGHT TO THE TOP! USE THE LADDER!
- Fly an airplane.
EXECUTION: THE PATH TO PROGRESS WHOAGRESS™
1. Acquire a ladder. DO NOT USE IT, YET!
This step was easy as beans,
BONUS CARBONZA INFORMATION TIME!™: Beans are SUPER EASY!
I bought the ladder without trouble. I didn’t even need to flash identification. (insert picture of Mark Carbonza’s state-issued driver’s license, complete with all information. Because if there’s one thing Carbonza isn’t afraid of, it’s being frauded!)
As for the not using it part, well that was easier than beans. It was as easy as Sunday morning and everybody knows I use my Sunday mornings for anything but heights! (insert youtube link to “Easy Like Sunday Morning” song)
2. Participate in a human pyramid. START AT THE BOTTOM!
I found a cheerleading group at a nearby college and asked if they’d like to be part of my “world-famous” (factually inaccurate) column about CONQUERSHIPPING™ my fears. They emphatically decided to help, but bit off a little more than they bargained for. (insert video of Mark throwing a tantrum and the cheerleaders trying to pick him up off the ground and Mark shouting “No! I’m not getting off the ground! That’s where the heights get you!”)
I convinced them to start with a Lying-Down Pyramid™. They kept calling it a dog pile, but I had already made these t-shirts. (insert picture of t-shirt that says “I’m a ‘Lying-Down Pyramid™’ Type Bitch, Bitch!”)
I’d say – wait for it. I’m debuting a new catchphrase – “Yes, hi? Table for one. Tonight, I dine at the SUCCESStaurant!” Boom!
3. Use the ladder
THIS WAS VERY DIFFICULT! I started by using the ladder as a shelf. Then I did that thing where I lie it down on the ground as a practice run for climbing it for real real, not for play play (source: Drawn Together). I then stood it up and spent every morning for two weeks trying to climb it. I fell several times, but I am proud to say that I finally have made it to the third step.
4. Participate in a human pyramid. MIDDLE, THIS TIME!
The same cheerleading team agreed to train with me every day and after a month of Lying-Down Pyramids™, they stuck me to my regiment and knocked me up a notch. It’s time for the middle. As an act of solidarity and encouragement, they all wore their “I’m a ‘Lying-Down Pyramid™’ Type Bitch, Bitch!” shirts, available for purchase on my website for ONLY $17.99! ONLY THAT MUCH!!!
I was held up by the backs of Martin and Francis.
5. Watch wrestling cage matches.
A lot of entertainment I consume is in the realm of fear for fun. I enjoy being spooked by horror movies…and WRESTLING CAGE MATCHES WHERE THE WRESTLERS GET ALL LIKE “LET’S CLIMB TO THE TOP OF THE TALL TALL CAGES AND JUMP OFF AND HURT THE OTHER GUY!” I watched these matched as a look at their technique. I also watched to get a close of of their eyes to see if they’re open or not. It turns out their eyes are not only open but COMPLETELY FULL OF NOT-FEAR! HOW?!
IF THEY CAN DO IT, SO CAN I!
6. Participate in human pyramid. STRAIGHT TO THE TOP! USE THE LADDER!
My cheerleading team, whom I’ve dubbed the “Magnets” because HOW DO THEY DO THAT?! THEY STICK TOGETHER!
This time, the local newspapers came to cover the story: “Local cheerleading team help disturbed man get over fear of heights, charity is real”. I set up the ladder, got up to the third step, then jumped onto Martin and Francis’ backs and continued to climb until I was secure atop Courtney and Lydia. (Insert picture of Mark on top of human pyramid)
7. Fly an airplane.
Apparently, you need a license for this?! WHY HASN’T ANYBODY TOLD ME?! UGH, SEND BAIL MONEY! IT’S ALSO APPARENTLY A FELONY TO BORROW A PLANE!
NOT TOTALLY UN-CONQUEREDSHIP™™, I MEAN I MADE SOME PROGRESS WHOAGRESS™!