Monday, November 2, 2009
Easy as pie
I have no idea where the expression "easy as pie" comes from. I could google it, but I'd rather speculate. Pie making is not easy, though it isn't as hard as, say, making bread. So, back in the days when everyone made stuff from scratch, saying something was as easy as pie made some sense. Nowadays, it doesn't. It's just become one of those expressions nobody bothers to think about. Now that I think of it, I'm not sure anyone except a few old rural folks even use the expression. I can't recall hearing it any time recently.
But, of course, that is not what I meant to write about, and any of you who know my writing style surely must have suspected that by now. By the way, if you know more about the expression "easy as pie", leave a comment. I am curious and comments are far better than google. I still like the personal touch. I'm kinda old fashioned that way.
So what is it that's "easy as pie"? Believe it or not, it's curing a lifelong aversion or phobia. Yep. That's right! In four to five days, one can desensitize oneself. This is no joke, though it certainly sounds like one. My therapist told me today that in four to five days I can cure myself of something that has bothered me for a lifetime. I said,"so why didn't I read this in Oprah?" He said, "because it's too simple."
Here's the deal: Expose yourself to the thing you have an aversion to. When you begin, write down how much anxiety you have. Don't get into it - just give it a number from 1 to 10. Keep exposing yourself to the anxiety source until the number drops by half. Then stop. Do this every day. Supposedly, in four to five days you'll feel very little anxiety. It may not be gone, but it'll be low. In his words, it'll have become "a little bit boring." I thought that was a humorous way of putting it. He's a funny guy.
What's the catch? There's no catch, except that most people won't do it. I sure can't envision myself starting this regimen. Even if it's only four to five days, just thinking about starting gives me the creeps. Therein lays the rub (and where did that expression come from?)
Sure, it's a grand idea, curing myself of something that's been bothering me for years. He said he's looking forward to finding out how it goes. That's when I made a face. "How it goes? You really think I'm even thinking about actually doing it?" No way! I'm attached to my aversion! That's the other reason this easy-as-pie stuff doesn't get done. Most of us (and that includes me) would rather talk about our aversions for years on end instead of getting rid of them. It's what we're made of. It's part of our personalities. Not so easy to give up, even if it is easy.
Notice I'm not telling you what my aversion is. At this moment, I'm not ready to lay my soul bare even to the small readership I have. No, I'm not that open. I'm tempted, to be sure, for I do know that my little problem is one that is fairly common. Perhaps another time. Maybe I'll tell all after I've actually tried the aversion desensitization and see if it really works so fast.
It really isn't easy. One has to be able to tolerate some discomfort. And that's another thing that no one really wants to do.
I promise a full report. Some day.
Painting note: Grant Wood "Dinner for Threshers" 1934
I googled the words "apple pie" and on the first page of image hits was Grant Wood's "American Gothic." I wondered if any of his paintings actually did have an apple pie in them, noticed how different his works depicting people are from his scenic work, and found this delightful painting (but no pie). Click on his name and check out the extensive online gallery of his work.
Addendum: I was looking at my list of links, which I need to amend, and noticed the "Markov Text Synthesizer." I used to have a lot of fun with this. Go check it out. It's a great way to vent one's feelings, then virtually chop 'em into bits and produce odd bits of prose that make odd sense. Here's what I came up with just now:
"I don't mind yours, but I hate taking off my body."