Someday, they will isolate the gene for worrying. At that time, a great quandary will face the human race: should it be genetically engineered in or out?
Arguments against the gene:
- The medical community seems to believe that stress is not good for you, and I have yet to encounter worry without stress.
- Worrying is not particularly enjoyable.
- The Visit wrapped up last Thursday morning. It was, by all measures, a stunning success (she said humbly). On Saturday, I dreamt that I’d failed to plan a way for our visitors—who you will remember had gone home two days earlier—to get to Easter mass. Apparently my ability to produce anxiety can overcome both the separation of church and state and the space-time continuum.
Arguments for the gene:
- One non-worrying friend claims that only worriers can write novels because writers have to imagine horrible things happening to their characters. When I caught myself thinking that some student research posters might get stolen out of the back seat of my car at Office Max, I decided there might be something to this theory. I had to tell myself sternly that no one nearby wanted to know about albino quail enough to break into my car.
- Another friend who doesn’t worry told me multiple times over the last month, “Don’t fret.” What American would even remember such a fine word as “fret” if she didn’t have someone telling her not to do it? This argument is only applicable if you know someone British.
Calm and peaceful friend number one also contends that whether or not you think up every possible calamity, you end up in approximately the same place. That is the problem with non-worriers—they lack the imagination to recognize that the rest of us are holding the world together. So those of you who think things just work out should thank the rest of us for saving you from the hordes of giant, rabid, albino quail.