On April 5th Lemony Snicket made a rare appearance on Twitter to answer questions on being scared in order to help you conquer your fears. The following is the transcript.
Greetings to all. You will tell me your fears and I will help you best I can, which in my experience is not very much.
Q: Should I be afraid of the dark?
A: As with mayonnaise, you should not be afraid of the thing itself, but what is lurking inside.
Q: If someone with a tattoo of an eye on their ankle approaches me and offers me a ride, should I be afraid?
A: Would your family pay a great deal of money for your safe return? My answer depends on yours.
Q: Haunted houses: scary or not scary?
A: Actual haunts, no. Teenagers at a fair, yes.
Q: What’s the scariest book you’ve ever read?
A: Angelina Ballerina, for obvious reasons.
Q: How can I, as a human of far greater strength & size be TERRIFIED of a 3-in long silverfish I found in my bathroom?
A: Power is not a matter of strength and size. Consider the fable of Dom Deluise and a thumbtack.
Q: I’m afraid of trying new things. Can you help?
A: Try an old thing instead, like Wilkie Collins or F.W. Murnau.
Q: Who is the scariest Disney character?
Q: What’s scarier, a scary book or a scary movie?
A: A bad movie adaptation of an elegant book is the most frightening of all.
Q: What do you say to someone who says they’re never scared of anything?
Q: Is it normal to be afraid of butterflies?
A: Yes. (NB I’m assuming you’re a piece of pollen.)
Q: Who is the scariest person you’ve ever met?
A: “Welcome to Nickelodeon. Let me show you around.”
Q: If you’re scared of your own shadow, does that mean your shadow is also scared of you?
A: I find these kind of philosophical conversations more frightening than any shadowy phantasm.
Q: I’m afraid that love will keep us apart. Any advice?
A: Allow me to forward this to @CaptainAndTennille
Q: I have a fear of my house burning to the ground and having to live with unsavory relatives. What should I do?
A: It strikes me that asbestos could solve both of these problems in the long term.
Q: Why do we feel afraid?
A: “We?” I thought I was alone. Eek!
Q: I suffer from a fear of mysterious authors unjustly accused of arson. Do you have any suggestions?
A: Leave Jonathan Safran Foer alone. He’s suffering enough.
Q: Who would win in a fight, a vampire, a werewolf or a spider?
A: Universal Studios, presumably, on opening weekend.
Q: How do I combat the fear of sloths? Not the deadly sin, the other kind.
A: You’re afraid of harmless animals but not sin? Meet me at the zoo.
Q: I’m afraid of sleeping alone but my husband is away on book tour, what should I do? [Tweeted by @lisabrowndraws]
A: I’ll say it again: Leave Foer alone.
Q: Can Laszlo spell his own name? (what about his parents) (what about The Dark?)
A: Surely everyone knows the rule “S before Z except when it’s a Gabor.”
Q: I’m afraid I’ll be trapped in a snow globe if I look at it too long. I know it can happen. Those poor people.
A: Fear of poor people is a problem we as a society must conquer immediately.
Q: Does it bother you that Neil Gaiman narrates the audiobook?
A: Everything Gaiman does unnverves me, particularly @amandapalmer
Q: I am afraid my mother might experience an existential crisis. Is there a lotion or balm you’d recommend?
A: You put lotion on your mother? No wonder she’s troubled.
Q: What is the scariest thing in the world?
A: It’s a tie: Disregard for others and American cheese.
Q: Is there anything you’re too scared to write?
A: Dear @CondoleezaRice, I’ve taken an interest in your work.
Q: In your opinion, what should you do if you fear rejection or failure more than anything?
A: Find success and acceptance, but let’s face it.
Q: I fear returning to twitter without #AskSnicket. How do we cope when you leave us again?
A: I’ve heard there are 139 other characters. One might amuse you.
Aaaand that’s it. Thanks everyone for your questions and a big hand, please, to author of ‘The Dark’ Mr! Lemony! Snicket!
End of transcript.