Friday, June 26, 2009

Are you afraid of clowns and WHY?

Put that question up on my Facebook and G-Chat status and these were the replies:

Response #1
friend: I'm sorry, but yes, they do and I think it's because of the "stereotypical" smile painted on that is so exaggerated it is creepy.
but you do not scare me :)
me: Thanks for answering!
i know i dont!
friend: lol oh and of course "IT didn't help although that wasn't the start
me: right

Response #2
friend: john wayne gacy is a reason that clowns are scary to some people
me: and you?
friend: Im not scared of clowns, never said I was just feel like I get why some people are
me: cause they'll kill you? =)
friend: because you're hiding something
me: hmmm
friend: Insane Clown Posse gives that same feeling
and pop culture doesnt help - more images of IT than of genuine sweet funny clowns
me: right...

Response #3
I wouldn't say they SCARE me but they are a little bit intimidating. In the same way that I think mascots, Seafair pirates, mimes, and people in big animal costumes are intimidating. For some reason, it's just a little unsettling. Maybe it's because they're masked to some extent. Fear of the unpredictable and the unknown.

Sometimes I love it though. So, who knows.

Response #4
Yes and just because! lol ;)

Response #5
Yes. Just unsettling since they are a person hiding behind a mask or makeup. You can't see the person to know if you should run or smile.
I am better with mimes for some strange reason.

Then a friend sent me an article from the Stranger (a great Seattle paper)
The different kinds of people that there are
The article reviews differnt kinds of people who have different issues like fear of clowns. Generally a great article. Here's what they said about the clown thing:

People Who Claim to Be Afraid of Clowns

These people (and they are numerous) are attempting to cultivate a cute quirk, but they are really just aping a cute quirk cultivated by thousands of cute-quirk-cultivators before them in a giant, gross, boring feedback loop. Yes, clowns can be mildly creepy. But come on. Among the many things that are scarier than clowns: fire, earthquakes, a guy with a knife, riding the bus, colon cancer, falling down the stairs (it could happen at any time!), rapists, people who just kind of look a little rapey and are standing too close to you in line at 7-Eleven, Marlo from The Wire, influenza, and scissors.

So. As I step out into the world and streets as a clown, I want to embrace this knowledge. It's important to remember out of the hundreds of friends on Facebook and G-Chat there were under ten responses. Nine saying yes and one no.
My intention stepping into this world of makeup and noses is NOT simply a "fun" way to entertain. It is also not with the intention to "scare." What it is...what it will be. I am still discovering that. I just know that I am compelled.

I also think its important to see that clowning is like many things in the world. There is great potential here. The ability to abuse and the ability to create love, change, entertainment, beauty, silliness,... When pressed, I'm sure all of the above friends could imagine a clown that did not scare them. Its like asking, "Do politics scare you?" Yes. And it holds great power.

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