Neil Tambe

Husband, Father, Citizen, Professional.

I'm a Detroiter who happens to enjoy writing, national parks, orange juice, the performing arts, and fanciful socks. More than anything though, I aspire to be a good husband, father, and citizen.

Early September, Part I - Fear the most

Earlier, I took a few moments to think about the topic of fear. You can find that discussion, here: http://ntambe.blogspot.com/2009/05/exploring-fear.html.

Here's an excerpt:
"...Loneliness is [what I fear], and death by extension. A world alone is one that I would never want to live in. I'm damn sure that fear isn't natural, I know exactly where it comes from.

But, even if I understand fear more clearly now, this wishy-washy idea of "alignment" isn't any easier. But luckily, we're human. I'm convinced that the human spirit is strong enough to do almost anything. In fact, when the human spirit triumphs, it makes me feel fearless. Even if only for a quickly passing moment."


I went to Chicago on Friday. I decided to stay the evening and fly back to Detroit on Saturday morning. Obviously, I needed a place to stay. I had three options: 1) Drop some money for a hotel room, 2) Stay out all night, 3)Find a friend to stay with. A friend from work, offered me a couch for the night in an e-mail earlier that week.

I declined. I went ahead and booked a hotel, even though she had offered. I didn't know why at the time.

I though to myself that I politely declined because I didn't want to inconvenience her. After all, I'd pretty much be staying on her couch for 3-5 hours and leaving extremely early the next morning. I thought, I was being considerate...rather, I convinced myself of it.

What I thought about Friday evening--ironically, I was walking to see Jersey Boys at the theater, alone, at the time--what that I had declined because I was scared. Even though she had offered, I was afraid she would angered by the request, refuse or think poorly of me if I had asked. In other words, I was avoiding making a request of her (a sort of confrontation, I suppose) and rejection. Why? Because rejection is the step-sister of loneliness.

Why do I bring this up? I don't know, maybe it's just for my own reflection. But also, I think it's terrific that these fears show symptoms. It's just hard to see them. And then admit them. Then do something about them. Really tough stuff.

So I guess it was nice that everyone had left town to go to Ann Arbor, my phone died--so I couldn't contact my colleagues after the show to meet up, and nobody else I had tried to make plans with had called me back. Otherwise, I would've never thought about this. But, it was pretty scary being by myself...I had felt pretty lame. As it turns out, being alone was exactly what I needed to understand why I get so anxious about loneliness.

Is that irony, coincidence or perfectly sensible? Sensible, I think.

PS - Jersey Boys, a pretty good show. Quite a pleasant surprise.