Penguins. They’re evil.
Most of my close friends know that I am a sphenisiphobiac to extreme, and that I cannot even be near the creatures. Even a replica of one can send me into spastic screams and squeaks that most would think belonged to a mouse being strangled, or tiny piglet separated from it’s mother.
What is Sphenisciphobia you say? Let me clue you in, spheniscidae is the family name for penguins. Penguins, those oh so adorable creatures that live in Antartica and all over spots in the world. Yes, I am deeply afraid of penguins.
That is my general reaction to most things that have any resemblance to a penguin, much to the delight of friends and family. Ever since my fear developed, friends and family have used this to full advantage. One time, while at a sleep over, some friends thought it would be brilliant to place a stuffed penguin next to me so I could awaken to it’s malevolent face in the morning.
This is what normal people see:
This is what I see:
I suppose the blood curdling screams and me locking myself in the bathroom for fifteen minutes was worth if for my friends. Hey, whatever floats your sadistic little boat.
I suppose the fear started after I began to have reoccurring nightmares when I was eight. Now, I usually have dreams that would make most acid users jealous, but this one takes the cake.
It starts out rather normally (for a dream). I am walking through the Sahara desert, there is nothing in sight but giant hills of sand. I am lost, the sun is high, and I am absolutely clueless as to why I am in the desert or as to why I am wearing an outfit I had when I was six years old.
Then, they appear.
Over the largest hill, I see figures align at the top. I shade my face with my hand and squint. They are penguins, and not just any penguins. Penguins armed with guns. Laser guns.
Picture that coming over the horizon, but with laser guns, and in the desert. Yeah.
As I stood there in awe at the sheer epicness of this image, it occurred to me that I might be in the way. Alas, before I could move, a turban-wearing octopus riding a hippo commanded the penguins to charge. “CHARGE LADS! GIVE HER BLOOD ‘N VINEGAR!” This is when I turned tail and fled.
You think being the bipedal human in this situation that I would have the advantage, especially with my pursuers being penguins who simply cannot run well and are burdened by laser guns. False.
The penguins were quickly gaining ground, I could hear their grunts and cries of rage as I ran swiftly through the desert. All hope seemed lost.
Then, my savior came. In the form of a giant corndog.
Seemingly out of nowhere, I giant corndog appeared. It wasn’t standing per se, just sort of hovering over the sand.
Suddenly, it developed a mouth and began to speak to me. “Do you need a ride little girl?” Usually, one would hear this from a creepy man in van that has “Free Candy” scrawled on the side, but with the looming doom of penguins nearing I gladly agreed to get on. And yes, I know, totally Freudian dream.
As I was riding the corn dog, I could see the penguins slowly becoming farther and farther in the distance. Feeling self assured and safe, I suddenly realized I was hungry. I then proceeded to eat my ride. Do not ask how one eats the object upon which they are riding, these things just happen in my dreams.
Soon, the penguins were gaining on me. One again, I could hear their war cries floating over the sand. It was terrifying.
Finally, I fell into a sand pit. They surrounded me. Their eyes began to glow red. It was all about to end when…
My bed was thoroughly drenched in sweat, and my dog was staring at me like I had just asked her to recite the seven works of Proust backwards to her. I figured I had probably started talking in my sleep again. It happened to be a Saturday, so I did what any eight year old would do to recover trauma experienced the previous night. Go and melt my brains with cartoons.
Still, this same dream plagued me for the next four years. I don’t know why or what significance it has but it just did. To this day, I will not eat corndogs nor will I go anywhere near Seaworld.
I still think Penguins are evil.