Fifth Friday Frightful Fripperies

Who ever thought it would be a good idea to put Election Day so close to Halloween? Billions of dollars are being spent to spook us about poor people or billionaires (choose one) — but there’s so much more. Ebola, ISIS, identity theft, school shootings, pink slime — we’re adrift in an age of free-floating and unarticulated fears. Here’s my attempt to articulate some of those in a first-ever collection of fifth Friday far-flung frightful fripperies:
• Your throw pillows are on the verge of being overthrown.
• Your lack of extra strength is why you’ll buy anything making that claim on its label.
• “Heavy duty” used to have the same effect on you, back when you were 30 pounds lighter.
• Bacteria grow and change faster than you, and you can’t stay out of their way.
• You almost certainly will be killed by something smaller than you.
• Better lighting will fix only so much.
• There’s nothing wrong with you that any product or purchase can improve.
• Nothing you do can predetermine your children’s choices.
• What makes you think the dark forces that combine in Drano will stop working together after your sink is unclogged?
• Just because everybody is sporting neon below their ankles doesn’t make it look less silly.
• You’re doing something wrong and everybody knows it.
• If somebody swept your kitchen of every spice, package and can that’s past its expiration date, you would starve.
• Fashion and comfort police soon will decree the Unitard Age has begun, and you won’t be ready.
• Autocorrect will mix up “wife” and “wifi” in the most embarrassing way possible.
• Your refrigerator’s random cycling on and off is sending signals to all your other appliances.
• Toothpaste and drywall have more common ingredients than you ever would have guessed.
• Your cable package does not include the network showing the next big hit.
• We will build it. They will come. We won’t like them.
• In a cashless society, checks won’t bounce — they’ll ricochet.
• Plants resent being hybridized and they’re getting ready to show it.
• Our dogs think the world of us, but only when we’re looking at them.
• Apple secretly pays product placement fees to coffee shop regulars, but you’re not one of them.
• Your favorite health food is not produced sustainably.
• You left something in your front yard just long enough for a neighbor to decide he or she dislikes you.
• You know of at least one online password that is forgotten and irretrievable, but there are more.
• Everyone you know has more frequent flyer miles than you.
• Your loved ones are concerned that you spend too much or too little time in the bathroom.
• You’re good. You’re not good enough. You cannot believe both at once, but they are equally true.
• Your guilty pleasures will cease giving you pleasure, but continue giving you guilt.
• Aluminum will turn out to have been a bad idea.
• Reading cursive will give you opportunity to impress your grandchildren and depress yourself at the same time.
• Artificial Intelligence has progressed further than we realized, because the smartest machines are now capable of concealing their capabilities from us.
• Half the buttons on your devices and gizmos are waiting to improve your life, if only you could figure out what they do.
• Consuming so much comfort food that you feel uncomfortable leaves you needing more comfort.
• There’s something deep inside bowling ball finger holes that you don’t want to know about.
• You will be forgotten, and sooner than you think.
• Fear of any of the above makes you less — not more — capable of coping.
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Don Kahle (fridays@dksez.com) writes a column each Friday for The Register-Guard and blogs