2011-09-19

The Spider/Bunny Effect

Today I'm adding two new additions to the Stationary Waves Lexicon. These items are related, and have been making me laugh to myself lately.

We can call them jointly The Spider/Bunny Effect.

Although a few of us really like spiders and find them fascinating - and it's true, they are fascinating - the vast majority of us have a tendency to get somewhat creeped-out at the sight of a spider. This reaction isn't entirely fear-based, either. People who aren't afraid of spiders at all still get startled or grossed-out at the sight of a spider, and I submit that anyone, regardless of their fondness for spiders, gets creeped out when a spider lands or crawls on them. This is the Spider Effect.

By comparison, we have the Bunny Effect, which is our bizarre tendency to want to grab, pet, love, feed, etc. bunnies for no apparent reason. Think about it: rabbits have virtually no practical use to humans, other than as a food source. But our reaction to the sight of a bunny isn't hunger, it is endearment. For some reason, no matter who we are, we all want to love little, fluffy, hopping bunnies simply by virtue of the fact that they are bunnies.

While I can perhaps make some sense out of the Spider Effect, reasoning that evolution has lead us to abhor things that are potentially venomous, I can make absolutely no sense of the Bunny Effect. What would make us fall in love with something small, fuzzy, and vegetarian? It seems almost random.

And yet, agree or disagree, we are all governed by the Spider/Bunny Effect to some extent or another...