I was crossing the street near my apartment the other night when I saw a car coming in the distance. I don't think of myself as a particularly morbid person, but my mind jumped to the possibility that this car was going to hit me, or at least steer toward me and try to hit me. Obviously, I needed to be prepared for this possibility. I imagined myself leaping toward the curb as the car smashed into the fence. My heart still pounding, I look through the shattered windshield to see what maniac would swerve so far out of their way to hit me. The door flies open, sending my heart rate back through the roof. The driver, his head bloodied by the impact, steps out of the car, pulling a handgun from within his jacket and aiming it directly at me. I hit the ground as a bullet flies past me. In an instant, I realize that I need to wrest this gun from the madman; he's clearly not going to stop at anything to kill me. I make my way toward him, dodging the hail of bullets he's firing at me. The police arrive to see me with his gun, insisting that I don't want to shoot, but I will if he tries anything funny. How am I going to explain this to the police?
All of this takes place in the five seconds it takes for me to step onto the sidewalk and start moving around the fence.
I excel at creating imaginary situations. I imagine I'm not the only one. However, I'm probably among the small minority that feels that I have to be prepared to deal with these same imaginary situations. I go to great lengths to plan out my reactions. I wouldn't want to be unprepared in case a hijacker wanted to kill me. These situations aren't limited to near-death experiences, though. I also have to prepare for women to walk up to me and profess their undying love. How do I let them down gently? Alternatively, if these are women I'm interested in, how do I respond in a way that's dashing and debonair?
Mine is a hard life, really. I have so many realities to deal with.