Monday, May 23, 2011

Damn You Mental Autocorrect, aka: I Keep Seeing Hitler Everywhere

You know how sometimes you see something out of the corner of your eye, then you look closely only to find out that what your brain “saw” and what was really there are two different things? Like, you think you see a squirrel scurrying through your yard, but when you look closely, you realize it’s just a flimsy half-page flyer that some nearby business kindly taped to your mailbox that’s now fluttering in your grass?
My eyes have been playing a trick on me sort of like that over the last few weeks, although this one is both repetitively consistent and oddly disturbing. Ready for it?... Every time I see an online article title – say on CNN or MSN – that includes the word “hiker” my brain converts it, ever so briefly, to the word “Hitler.” I am 100% serious.
Can you imagine?
Now, I’m one of those happy crack-pots who feels compelled to look for underlying reasons for just about everything. I don’t think there actually is a reason for everything – I really do believe that some things happen just because – but I like the idea of a reason. I like the idea of purpose. I like meaning. I just… do.
So that being said, what the heck could possibly be the reason my brain has settled into this troubling revision of the typed word “hiker”? Do I fear that hikers are somehow inherently evil? Because I like to hike. So do I feel that somehow I am inherently evil? Do I worry that I am evil, but only when I hike? I have to know, because I can’t continue to be thrown for a loop with headlines such as the following:
Seriously, after the brief millisecond of extreme shock, the first thing that my brain thinks every time is, “Didn’t Hitler die, like, 66 years ago?” Then “what’s he doing in a Gorge?” or “how are his mothers still alive?” or “how does he have multiple mothers?” or “Hitler was a she?”
Please help.

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