Even typing the word ‘hot press’ brings me out into a cold sweat. The copper tank in particular freaks me out – I have a fear that I’m going to fall into the tank and drown.
It’s utterly crazy, of course. The chances of a grown adult falling into a water tank that is fully sealed is literally nil. Even if the tank leaked and one of the pipes opened, I still wouldn’t be able to squeeze my ample arse into the one centimetre round opening. Falling into the tank and drowning is simply not going to happen. The rational me knows this.
So why does the phobic me put the towels away in the hot press with my eyes closed?
I know I’m not alone because plenty of people have irrational phobias, even beyond the usual fear of clowns or spiders. I have a friend who’s afraid of mayonnaise or any creamy dip and another who’s afraid of owls.
Over the years I’ve come across people who are afraid of odd numbers (so for example, will only have the volume on their car radio at an even number) and people who are afraid of socks so will only touch them with gloves on.
And now the worst bit of news. Boffins have discovered in a recent study that there may be a link between phobias and premature ageing. Obviously the last thing I want is to be afraid of my hot press AND have wrinkles. That would be crazy altogether.
Have you got a weird phobia? Spill!