Intro: Pounding bass note and a stirring fanfare of horns. Welcome to another edition of Things to Think about. Here's Stacy. The horns continue with a keyboard note held.
Relaxing piano music is in the background.
Welcome to the Things to Think About podcast, where we use fables and fairy tales to uncover deeper truths about our subconscious world. We often procrastinate out of fear. I put off something because I heard horror stories. We will explore how fear colors our judgment in a tale I call “The Ceremony.” And now, get comfortable and relax. Take a deep breath in. And exhale. A deep breath in and exhale. A deep breath in and exhale. And if you'd like, you can slowly close your eyes.
Once upon a time, a snake needed to shed its skin. Other snakes told it that the process was very grueling and awful, so the snake became afraid. The snake did not feel well. It had very little energy to hunt for lizards and mice and just wanted to curl up and be left alone. It made the effort to hunt because it wanted to live. “Are you okay?” a friend asked. “Oh, you know, other than being dead inside, I’m just peachy,” the snake responded. “Maybe you should see a healer,” the other snake suggested. “Sigh,” I guess so. Ever the optimist, the snake wanted to find out if it was a parasite or a virus. They were sure it would involve a radical lifestyle change.
“You are overdue for ‘The Ceremony,’” the healer informed the snake. You need to go to Crucible Cavern and begin the ceremony as soon as possible. “I have too many duties in the jungle,” the snake deferred, “I can’t do this until next month.” The healer relented and provided a list of preferred insects to prepare for The Ceremony. “I know you don’t have an appetite, but eat as normal until a week before the ceremony, and then load up on caterpillars and earthworms since they are very slow and easier to catch.” The snake asked its friends about the ceremony. “It’s so bad. You will feel as if you are dying. Make sure you leave a bunch of rocks in the sun so you have someplace warm afterward.”
The snake wrapped up its tasks and was very stressed. Its skin felt dry and itchy, and it noticed it was very irritable, hissing at its friends. It scouted the area near Crucible Cavern and found an old rabbit warren nearby that was teaming with caterpillars and worms. It lined it with leaves and other foliage and began to eat the caterpillars and earthworms. They were so disgusting and nothing like the warm mice and tasty lizards it preferred. After a while, it began to feel full, but it still had to eat more. The snake was so tired and desperately wanted to sleep. Finally, it had completed the healer’s instructions. The caterpillars and worms felt strange, and it was scared to sleep. Eventually, it drifted off, and had dreams about the healer screaming to hurry up.
The snake awoke and felt okay. It had survived the night. With a bit more vigor, it wriggled to the entrance of Crucible Cavern. It was hard to see since some kind of film covered its eyes. It entered the shaft and felt discomfort. The walls were lined with rocks that bit into the snake’s sensitive skin. Because it had filled up on soft worms, it was a snug fit, but this allowed the sharp edges to do their work. It realized that its skin was sloughing off and continued the arduous journey with renewed vigor. Its vision grew clearer, and as more and more skin came off, it felt renewed and revitalized. Finally, it emerged from Crucible Cavern, with its new skin. The healer was waiting by the heated stones. “You did well, and everything looks normal. Don’t wait so long next time,” the healer chided. Now that the snake understood the process it knew it would be easier even if it was no fun. I recommend a follow up appointment at the mud baths. The snake had heard horror stories about the mess and what a pain clean-up was. “Here we go again.”
What things are you avoiding due to second-hand knowledge? How do you know that you have two left feet? Try out the salsa class or make an appointment to do your taxes. Most things are easier if you do not put them off. If you enjoy this podcast, please, tell a friend.
Closing: Closing jazzy keyboard and thrumming bass. I hope you enjoyed today's segment. Tell a friend. See you next time. Music fades. "