For most of my life, I've never really been afraid of much. That's not me trying to sound super macho or anything, it's simply the truth. I can get startled, don't get me wrong, but very rarely am I scared.
For example, I'll jump my fair share in a slasher movie, even when I know the jumpy moment is coming. The bad guy is never dead the first time he's "killed," everyone knows that. When the protagonist leans over the villain to make sure he's dead, you know with absolute certainty that the bad guy is going to wait for a bit, and then jump up and suddenly be right back to his good ol' slashy self. He'll probably knife a few more faces and then get dropped into a vat of acid or something, anything that can give the audience closure via complete certainty that the bad guy is irreversibly dead (until the sequel, wherein they "explain" how he survived the acid and then hope you just forget about it). And despite being in total anticipation of that jumpy moment, I still jump.
No, the true force of my statement is that I rarely get afraid. I've never been afraid of financial ruin, not finding love, or dying. A lot of people don't get that last one, and I don't get why they don't get it.
I'm an atheist, so according to my world view, when I die ... I'm done. That's it. A lot of people would intuitively think that means I have plenty of reason to fear death. If I die and don't have heaven -- or anything -- to look forward to, how could I not fear death? Well, I've never really come at it from that angle. For me, I'm either alive or dead. If I'm alive, I'm alive, so why worry? If I'm dead, I'm dead, so I obviously won't be worrying about anything. Where does the worry come into play?
This non-fear of death may very well be the death of me. As an example, if someone approached me in an alley with a gun and told me to give them my wallet, my first instinct would not be to give them my wallet, it would be to try to figure out how not to give them my wallet. It's the principle of the matter. This guy can't get away with being a prick and taking my wallet, so how do I make sure he doesn't get away with it? Here are some scenarios that I've come up with ahead of time to apply in stick-up situations, as needed:
I'm serious, I'd probably try to do one of those two things. (Apparently I'm a face-centric combatant.) And I'd say that in about 75% of those scenarios, I end up super dead. But knives and guns just don't really scare me. I mean, I guess I can say that now, but when someone's poking me in the heart with a knife, who knows, right? I'd like to think that I'd be like, "Hey, stop it dickhead!" and then karate-chop him in the face. (Or her, I suppose. See what a politically correct society has gotten you, ladies? All of you are now knifers.) It's much more likely, however, that I'd be like, "[Girlie scream][gurgle][dying soliloquy to beautiful woman][dead]."
So, I guess if you're a girl who wants a guy that would put up a fight, that's me. It's also helpful if you want a guy likely to be dead by the age of 30. (Life insurance! Cha-ching!)
I'm not going to let myself get away with this superhuman anti-fear thing, though. I do have a pretty damn wussy fear -- insects. Not all insects, of course, just the killy ones. Spiders and scorpions, mostly. ("But Shawn, spiders are arachnids and scorpions are anthropods." Shut up.) For fuck's sake, look at this:
Why would God create such a face-hugging, bite-off-your-skin, lay-eggs-in-your-ear-and-then-when-they-hatch-its-babies-eat-your-brain kind of creature? Not cool, God. Way not cool. Apologize.
So, I think for a mugger to actually be able to get my wallet, they couldn't do it with guns or knives, but they actually might be able to do it with spiders or scorpions. Like, if they had a scorpion in a clear box and they were pissing it off by poking it with a stick through a ventilation hole or something, and they said, "See? Look how pissed I'm making this little bastard. Give me your wallet or I'll throw him on you. He'll be all crawling on you n' shit and get under your shirt or in your pants and just fuckin' stinging everywhere." My response: "Here you are, sir. And if you give me your home address or that of a trusted middleman, I'll go ahead and ship you my belongings from home, as well. How long do you need with my credit card before I cancel it? I can't cancel it? Fair enough. Have a good day."
Even worse, what if he had a gun that shot spiders? That'd be my kryptonite. Holy hell, I just found a picture online of a guy who actually made a spider gun:
That guy is a super asshole. Seriously, click on that picture to zoom in; there are fucking spiders in a fucking spider-shooting gun. I hope he feels like Alfred Nobel after he created dynamite and saw all of the pain and suffering it would likely bring, ultimately leading to him creating the Nobel Peace Prize to make him feel better about himself. (Wow, that's two Nobel Prize mentions in only a handful of blogs.)
I'm just happy that we're decades away from the kind of technology needed to manufacture some sort of knife made of scorpions ...
(NOTE: The above picture is not what a scorpion knife would look like. A scorpion knife would be made of hundreds of angry, stingy scorpions, and when you're stabbed with it, the knife will come apart and they'll be crawling all over you inside and out and tearing you up. I just wanted a picture, so that's what you get.)