Billie Parker: OK. Good, sorry. This is my low time baby for class. It's coffee time. But I don't I don't I'm not going to drink coffee.
Number one, I'm afraid of falling out of the sky.
Number two. Afraid of the unkindness of others and the unkindness in myself. I do tend to be harsh verbally, and it's alienating to people around me. Mostly the people I'm very close to, siblings, my wife, etc.. As I get older, my rough edges and my sharp points are more pronounced. I would have imagined it to go the other way, but that is not the fact.
Three. I fear that I won't create anything substantial.
Four. Afraid of going back to sleep. I guess the first big sleep in my life, I was addicted to drugs for the first note since my adolescence until I was 32 and I had a friend who got sober. I took her to Howard University Hospital. I lived in Washington, D.C. and I watched her from across town for a few months and she sobered up. And so I asked to be taken off the methadone and I stopped taking I.V. heroin. And so it was monkey see, monkey do. Really.
Five. I'm afraid of tyrannical rule. It scares me and angers me all at once.
Six, feeling powerless and having no voice. I literally did not speak for about a year when I was eighteen, I just felt I had nothing to say, nothing to contribute. I have had dreams as a younger person that I was in a horrible situation, something scary, frightening, terrible. And I would open my mouth to scream. Nothing comes out. Part of the voice listeners also was being assaulted by men when I was young, and so I while I don't have a fear of men, I have, a fear of not standing up and speaking up.
Number seven, I'm afraid of goat cheese and raw garlic.
Number eight. I've thought about dying since I was a little child late at night. Yes. Yes. I've always been involved in death in one way or another. Our mother died when we were very young, so there was that. I started reading obituaries at an early age, always looking for people my age who has passed away. How old were they and what did they die from? But I think it's like a little silent prayer inside that just always somehow it's there. Like I count calories all day long. I saw it. I got that from my mother. And it's like a silent little prayer. One hundred. Three hundred. Seven hundred calories.
Number nine, I'm afraid of missing the people I love. And if there is perception after death, if there is longing, if there is emotion. I doubt that there is. But that makes me sadder than actually lights out.
Number 10. And I'm afraid I can't protect my dog adequately.
My name is Billy Parker, and these are 10 things that scare me.
Gay Block: And this is gay.
Billie Parker: Hi, honey.
Gay Block: Well, I've written six things down. Do you think that's enough? [laughter].
Number one's skiing, that is sliding downhill.
Number two, tripping, which I do a lot.
Number three, children, when I'm around, the youngest grandchild that I have here is almost five. I don't think I'm so great with little children. Whereas Billie, my wife. He just thinks that she hung the moon and she's a lot of fun and she knows how to do certain things that it would never occur to me to do.
Number four, people much more accomplished than I.
Number five, men more than women.
Number six. I'm a photographer and I photograph people. One of the things that I have always thought that I should do as a photographer was get in the car and go out on my own and photograph. And I have always been afraid to do it. And I don't know exactly why. I know that if I were to go out and do this, I would like it. Not all of it, though. Some of the aloneness would be difficult for me. And I know that's what keeps me from doing it. It must be what might be called the biggest fear I have.
Number seven, teenagers, especially teenage boys. I had an older brother. He was pretty powerful, very popular. He was everything. And I felt like nothing. I was overweight, you know, never obese. But I always felt that wasn't pretty. But what Billy and I have together... well, the first thing I can think of to tell you is that I was sixty nine years old before we got together, and she's the first person who's ever told me I was beautiful.
Number eight, being dependent.
Number nine, losing my independence, i.e., getting older.
And number 10, losing my memory and my mind.
My name is Gay block, and these are 10 things that scare me.