I was just reading a news story from Wisconsin that skeeved me out. Apparently a guy dropped his cell phone down the grate of a storm drain. He then lifted off the grate, and reached in to retrieve it. He pitched face first into the drain, where he became stuck, with his head and shoulders underwater, and drowned.
That's it in a nutshell (but you can read the story here, if you're so inclined), but you may not realize yet the part of the story that I found so disturbing. Sure, this was just a guy that I'll never know who did something stupid. These things happen, but if you do anything more than muster up a simple "Awwww..." everytime you read about the untimely demise of someone you don't know, you will be debilitatingly depressed all of the time. But in this case, the story had an element that I am upset by.
The storm drain.
I have this fear, well it's not so much a full-blown fear as it is a phobia, that I will accidentally drop my keys down a storm grate. When I am walking somewhere, and I have to step over a storm grate, my hand is in my pocket, maintaining a death grip on my keys. This way the keys are protected by both my grip and the pocket, and there is no way that storm drain will get the keys.
And it's that bad too, where I envision that not only is there a remote possibility that my keys could drop into the drain, but that the grate has somehow latched onto some basic primal sentience, that knows not good nor evil, but simply exists to hunger for my keys, and that it will do whatever it can to sway the fates in such a way as to get them, just as I take extra precaution to prevent it.
I don't know where I developed this fear. I don't know anyone who has ever dropped their keys in the drain. It just appeared one day. But, in the scheme of things, although it's odd, it's rather minor and doesn't maintain my focus for longer than the instant that I am stepping over the grate (or in this case, when I read about a guy who fell prey to the bloodlust of a storm drain), and I think I can deal with it sans therapy.