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What's That Smell? Once Upon a Buoyant Voyager, season 6 episode 603

Once Upon a Buoyant Voyager

Hey, you… how’s your crypto? A real roller coaster, huh? Prolly want a guy like Mr. White Hat on your side. Also, maybe, don’t use crypto if you want to fight the anxiety.

Tom did a little traveling a few weeks back and the trip was fine. Oh, wait. No it wasn’t. The friends were nice but the trip itself was a damned nightmare of travel anxiety. This week, he shares some good times in the Austin airport, an epic exercise in friendliness and frustration, and the real reason he was anxious: reports of unruly passengers.

You don’t have to look too far for details. Caitlin Gibson wrote a backgrounder on it back in 2016 for the WaPo: Passengers behaving badly: The real reason we freak out on planes. 2016 Since then, things have only gotten worse, with nearly 4,000 reports and 600 under active investigation by the FAA this year so far.

Thankfully, the Federal Aviation Administration has finally come out of hiding and released… a PSA: You Don’t Want Your Pilots Distracted: Unruly Behavior Doesn’t Fly (YouTube). You should watch it. It’s horrifying. Or don’t, we get it.

Pete takes on a listener submission that hits home. We’re talking about Aquaphobia, the specific phobia that describes people with a fear of water. In this case: “People suffer aquaphobia in many ways and may experience it even though they realize the water in an ocean, a river, or even a bathtub poses no imminent threat. They may avoid such activities as boating and swimming, or they may avoid swimming in the deep ocean despite having mastered basic swimming skills. This anxiety commonly extends to getting wet or splashed with water when it is unexpected, or being pushed or thrown into a body of water.”

The academics behind “Aquaphobia: Causes, Symptoms and Ways of Overcoming It for Future Well-Being” share some data and their observations on causes behind the anxiety.

The problem is that this fear causes people to avoid learning to, or becoming proficient swimmers. And when they avoid becoming proficient swimmers and they’re unexpectedly submerged in water, they have a predictably high chance of drowning.

We need to fix that.

Or maybe Paul Lennon of the Adult Aquaphobia Swim Center in Glendale, California will have something to say about it. We’ll talk about him in this episode, along with some of his compatriots doing the work of helping adults live with the fear AND become great swimmers in the process.

And we talk about Simone Biles, too, because air sense is closely related to Pete’s probably invented phrase water sense, which you’re free to use yourself after you listen to this episode and learn what it means.

This Week’s Tune!

Is it too on the nose that we bring you Sinking by Jane & the Boy this week? You be the judge. Find it in Apple Music or Spotify.

Also in :

Season 8 of the Sometimes-Funny Humanity Podcast with Tommy Metz III and Pete Wright.


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