Monday, June 10, 2013

I’m Afraid of Mirrors

They really creep me out. I’m so afraid of mirrors that I brush my teeth in the kitchen, so I don’t have to stand there looking into the mirror for two minutes. It’s not as if I need the mirror anyway – I know where my teeth are.

I’ve been afraid of mirrors ever since I was a little girl, when I first realized that nine out of ten murder-ghosts pop out of mirrors (the tenth one is posing as a hitchhiker). I know most of these killings are associated with summoning a murder-ghost on purpose like an idiot, but I’m not taking any chances. Even though I’m a grown woman in the 21st century and I should “know better,” I’m convinced that someday something is going to leap out of a mirror and eat my head.

According to an informal survey of my Facebook friends, I’m not the only one who’s afraid of mirrors. Dozens of superstitions and legends about mirrors have sprung up over the centuries, in cultures across the world, so I guess it’s part of the human condition to hate mirrors even as we feel compelled to peer into them several times a day.

Mirrors are supposedly capable of showing a person’s soul, which is why vampires don’t have reflections. Some cultures have believed that mirrors are capable of trapping a soul, either after death, during sleep, or even in the course of normal mirror use, which is why the ancient Romans believed (and we still believe today) that breaking a mirror will bring seven years of bad luck – because breaking the mirror damages your very soul, WHICH IS NOW INSIDE THE MIRROR AND NO LONGER IN YOUR BODY, EEP. That’s why people in some cultures cover their mirrors when someone in the home is sick, or has recently died – because they don’t want the person’s soul to be trapped in Mirror Land, which is probably not the happenin’ place that Through the Looking Glass made it out to be. I guess the need to comb, fold, fasten, plait and glue your hair into unnatural positions every morning trumps the need to protect your very essence. On the plus side, if your house is haunted, you can just hang up some mirrors, and they’ll suck the ghosts right up.

This mirror is stealing the soul of a dog.

Creepily enough, as I was writing this, the wall mirror in my bedroom fell off the wall ALL BY ITSELF and scared the crap out of Shoe aka Fatty. I leapt to conclusions and yelled at him, which didn’t help matters.

He says it fell because I fastened it to the wall with "mirror-hanging tape." He may be right.