Hey Chad, I’ll See Your Bunny and Raise You a CLOWN!
The picture's just a little something for Benefield. Listen, he's right. I own it. I have a fear of abnormally large rabbits. But I do want to clear up one thing: I don't fear real rabbits. Seriously, how could you? They're soft, cuddly, and taste delicious. No, I'm talking about, well, Easter bunnies, and to a certain extent, big stuffed rabbits as well.
First, let me explain that last part. Many years ago, our Christmas Wish headquarters was located in a vacant unit in Towne Square Mall next to what is now Macy's. I was working the evening shift. So, one night I went into the back to toss my coat on a table. When I opened the door, there was a great big stuffed rabbit sittin' on a chair. Freaked me out. Sally Davenport, a great friend and Christmas Wish veteran, thought it was hysterical. And it was. At the time, my dad was Santa Claus at the mall, so she gave it to him. And I didn't know that. I walked into my parents apartment a few days later and there was that rabbit sitting in front of the television. See, when you have a fear of large rabbits and one appears to be following you around town, it's not good. At least my family had a nice laugh, and, yes, so did I. Hey, it's funny! Despite the fact that when I see an Easter bunny or a big stuffed rabbit, a bolt of terror courses through my body before my brain even reacts, it's funny! As for the origins of the phobia, I couldn't tell you. Neither can my family. I thought maybe there was some huge trauma that I had suppressed that those closest to me could shed some light on, but no. No large rabbit jumping in my window in the middle of the night as a boy; no large rabbit chasing me home from school; no large rabbit stealing my lunch money on the teeter-totter. I got nothin'. But, Chad, what I do have is that picture. And, tomorrow, for lunch, I'm going to have an olive loaf sandwich with pickles and...MUSTARD! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! (Cue the thunder and lightning)...(but not the rabbit).