So, okay. My fears include: one. Failing the dogs in a way that they get hurt. In the middle of an expedition or a race we’ll stop and rest for a few hours and feed the dogs and massage the dogs. Well, think about having a team of probably 12 or 14 dogs, and they could all certainly use ten minutes of massage and stretching. I mean, they would love it, but they also need to sleep, and they also need to eat. You need to prepare the food and the straw, and you need to get some rest yourselves so that you're making sound decisions. So there's always more you can do, but you can't, if you want to get anywhere.
Three. Jumping in water.
Four. The ocean.
Five. Checking my email, opening the mail, answering, the phone, and going out and being around other people
Six. I like going to parties better than going to smaller events because I love leaving. I love just that I’m a master of the French leave. I can just leave. My hellscape would be like some kind of dinner party with six people.
Seven. I'm not somebody who is comforted by hugging and physical touch, except with Blair. That's an exception.
Eight. Things being out of place. Blair, for my birthday a couple of years ago, my wife Blair made me this guided meditation C.D. called “You Are A Soil Scientist.” It walks through a day in my lab where everything's clean and everything's in order. Yeah I would love a place for everything. Everything in its place would be so fantastic. These dogs have come into my life to teach me how to accept chaos
Nine. Dying, but not death. I mean, I thought I had a fear of death, I guess, and then a woman stole my horse. You know, I'd let her ride my horse a few times but it never was an agreement that she could move with the horse to Oklahoma. So I drove down to Oklahoma, bought a horse trailer on the way down, found my saddle, saddled up the horse, and I just decided, okay, I'm going to ride up to the house and let her know. So I told her mother, I said, here's my horse. I want to let you know I'm taking him back. And whatever, I'm just going to let it go. I just want my horse back. And I started to ride down. Her boyfriend rode down to the gate and he said, “You can leave the property, but you can't leave the property with the horse.” He had a small rifle just pointed at my head. I just kept thinking, wow, like, this man is pointing a rifle at my head. But at the same time I just don't feel afraid, like I just have a hard time caring. He was very agitated. And because I don't make a lot of facial expressions, you know, I have a kind of flat affect and try to overcome that, but when I'm in a stressful situation my facial expression just disappears. I wouldn't describe myself as neurotypical. So, he kept saying, “Make a fucking face! Make a face! Make a face! Why aren't you? What the fuck is wrong with you, dude? What is wrong with you?” And, you know, finally he he grabbed my hand and, you know, twisted my thumb back and dislocated it. And, you know, I must have grimaced because then he said, “There, now you made a fucking face.” He seemed very relieved.
Ten. All of life moving too fast for me.
I'm Quince Mountain and these are 10 things that scare me.
Quince is a dog musher, and recently we spoke to another dog musher, Blair Braverman. Well guess what? They’re married. So we wanted to do something special and marry their episodes. You just heard Quince Mountain, now here’s Blair Braverman and the 10 things that scare her. One. Cats. Especially big cats Two. Transphobia. My husband is transgender. He transitioned three years before I met him and I don't think he worries about this, but I do. I worry about transphobia and transphobic violence and I see things that I think he's lived with his whole life. People who know me, act a certain way around him and and to him it may seem normal and and to me, I'm like, wait a moment. That person wouldn't be acting like that if they, you know, if they weren't thinking about this. What I try not to do is defend him when he doesn't want to be defended. That's been a very big lesson for me. That this is his business and my job is to support his decisions in terms of how he wants to relate the world, when he wants to speak up, when he feels safe or not. And it's similar to I worry about anti-semitism when I go to the synagogue on high holy days. I worry that someone, there's going to be an act of terrorism. I've encountered increasing anti-semitism up here in the Northwoods. And it's something asked me, you know, why do you why do you tell people you're Jewish if you're afraid of violence. I don't want people in my town to be able to tell themselves that they haven't met a Jew when they see things about Jews on the news. It's that simple. I don't want people in Norway or in villages where I've lived to be able to think that they've never met a Jew. I want them to see my face. Three. Parties. Four. Social navigations. Especially as I moved from Midwestern mushing where I've known these people for years to Alaska, which is where I'll be this winter. I'm afraid that there's a sense in this community that I'm coming in as someone who hasn't proven myself yet as a musher, at least in Alaska. Right? I just am qualifying for my rookie Iditarod. I haven't, I haven't run it yet, and - *dog bark* Oh Q got... Okay. He was out scooping dog poop. Should I start over with that one a little bit? Oh, my fear, I don't know if this is even true, but my fear is that people are looking at me and thinking who does she think she is? Five. The dogs getting hurt. I have 20 adult dogs right now, two retirees and 11 puppies. You know, I love these animals so much and I have so much love in my life and that means that you have a lot to lose. Six. Lyme disease. I was basically like stuck in bed for two years and I'm just always afraid it's going to come back. And I do still have lingering effects like sensitivity to heat, which doesn't sound like it would apply when it's 40 below, but it actually really does because when you're wearing that much clothing and then suddenly you have to run around and like run through a snowbank and then like you faint in a snowbank and your dogs are relying on you and you're in the middle of the wilderness. So, you know, Lyme disease, one of my fears. Seven. Me failing the dogs. Eight. Online harassment. I think that trolls are all around us and they, they're angry and just like we're all angry about different things and so they, they go online and they have this directed anger and they need someone to torment and, and I don't want that to happen to me. Nine. Violence by humans. When I'm out with the dogs, I don't worry about blizzards, I don't worry about nature, I worry about humans. The storm actually doesn't give a shit about anything. It just is a storm, but a human with an agenda, and with anger is terrifying to me. Ten. Not completing the Iditarod. My name is Blair Braverman and these are 10 things that scare me.