• Please be advised there is a potential issue with DD collections, which may result in an excessive amount being taken. Please read the stickied thread in Fortean Times Magazine > General Discussion, Subs etc

Strange Things That Scared You (But Aren't Obviously 'Scary')

Trevp666

Don't blame me - I didn't cook it.
Joined
May 29, 2009
Messages
9,948
Location
Flitwick, Bedfordshire, 1874
Aaaah but what you're failing to take into consideration is that although it might take it 90 seconds to fold a towel, it can do it all day, every day, 24/7, without taking breaks, without complaining, until there's a power cut or the damn thing wears out.
It doesn't need wages, or food, or drink, it can't be reasoned with, it doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear.
And it absolutely will not stop... ever, until you are dead!

Oh no wait....not that last bit.
 

Mythopoeika

I am a meat popsicle
Joined
Sep 18, 2001
Messages
48,896
Location
Inside a starship, watching puny humans from afar
Aaaah but what you're failing to take into consideration is that although it might take it 90 seconds to fold a towel, it can do it all day, every day, 24/7, without taking breaks, without complaining, until there's a power cut or the damn thing wears out.
It doesn't need wages, or food, or drink, it can't be reasoned with, it doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear.
And it absolutely will not stop... ever, until you are dead!

Oh no wait....not that last bit.
Go with Trev if you want to live.
 

Mooka

Devoted Cultist
Joined
Oct 28, 2022
Messages
172
Location
In the shadow of the ash trees, Derbyshire
Rupert The Bear! I’ll explain…

When I was really little we were at the seaside where one of those ‘have your kid’s photo taken with a man dressed up as a cuddly character’ was lurking. This man happened to be dressed as Rupert the Bear. Now for some reason I took one look at him and thought, nooooo way. Both my mum and dad asked me several times if I would have my photo taken with him and I remember saying a definite no. So what did they do? They tricked me! Bought me an ice cream which I was merrily tucking into in my push chair when suddenly I spotted a stranger‘s hand over my right shoulder (amazing how much detail I remember from being so young!), pushing me along. I looked round in horror and saw a bulbous white teddy bear head looking down at me. My goodness did I scream and cry, and a photo was taken of that very moment, however curiously it looks like I am laughing on the photo not scared for my life! I swear this incident started my irrational fear of masks, still to this day if I can’t see anybody‘s face it scares me.
 

AgProv

Master of Uncertainty and Doubt
Joined
Apr 6, 2014
Messages
1,164
Location
too North to be Midlands, too south to be North
The scampi in Fingerbobs. I just couldn't figure out what animal they were meant to be and that freaked me out a bit. Hilda Ogden but I am not sure why that was, it wasn't the curlers which folk think when I mention it.
She's a scary actress. The character she played in Last Of The Summer Wine (the forceful old lady who ran a junk shop and would not let anyone out of the shop till they'd bought something) frankly scared me.
 

staticgirl

Abominable Snowman
Joined
Oct 12, 2003
Messages
876
I loved the scampi. i thought it was pretty although i also hadn't a clue what it was.

Some very reasonable fears in the last few posts I think. I often feel as if I am suffocating if I don't have the fan on at night even if it's freezing.
 

Sollywos

Studying for finals of Grumpy Old Lady degree.
Joined
Dec 23, 2018
Messages
882
Location
In the enchanted library.
Hi @Mooka , just our of interest had you liked Rupert before this incident? That was a mean trick for your parents to play (parents eh?)

I'm not keen on full face masks either but not because I was sacared out of my wits by a full sized Rupert Bear! My dads trick that he played on me to do with Rupert Bear wasn't scarey but it was equally proof that parents can't be totally trusted!!!

He used to read me a bed time story from the Rupert Annual. If you know them they have rhyming couplets under the picture with a longer text underneath. Not yet at school I'd not learned to read so hadn't noticed until I went to stay with a cousin and my aunt read the longer version which was much better! I challenged dad on this but he carried on reading the rhymes but in a flat voice and not the sing song one! He had me fooled for a bit but I noticed bed time story wasn't taken any longer and also sometimes he'd forget!! I got him trained in the end :) and also in the process persuaded him to teach me to read! So at least I was well ahead by the time I did go to school! So not a scarey story like yours, it had a happy ending.

By the way I hope you weren't also put off ice cream!
 

Mooka

Devoted Cultist
Joined
Oct 28, 2022
Messages
172
Location
In the shadow of the ash trees, Derbyshire
Hi Sollywos, as far as I know I don’t think I’d come across Rupert before. Haha yes it was very sly of them and I vaguely recall getting a bit paranoid about who was pushing me in my pushchair after that incident! Strangely enough it didn’t put me off ice cream, I love the blooming stuff!

Dad‘s eh?! I’m pleased your story had a happy ending.
 

Bad Bungle

Tutti but not Frutti.
Joined
Oct 13, 2018
Messages
3,924
Location
The Chilterns
I wasn't keen on Raggety - or indeed any grumpy creature made of twiglets.

Reggety.jpg
 

brownmane

off kilter
Joined
Feb 1, 2019
Messages
2,901
Location
Ontario, Canada
I wasn't keen on Raggety - or indeed any grumpy creature made of twiglets.

View attachment 60557
Ooh yes. Raggety was odd and I didn't really know how to take that creature. I had a Rupert book (I had not yet learned how to read) and so enjoyed the pictures.

I don't remember my parents sitting down to read to me. I think they helped me read when I was learning, but no bedtime stories. They were dairy farmers and so out in the barn working, at my bedtime.
 

IbisNibs

Exotic animal, sort of . . .
Joined
Oct 30, 2016
Messages
2,703
Location
Outside my comfort zone.
I have quit folding underwear and socks before putting them away in the drawer. I am quite the rebel.

In my childhood, my mother and aunts ironed sheets, pillowcases, kitchen towels, underwear....
Did they use starch when they ironed? I think starched underwear would scare me.

The posts about Rupert Bear reminded me of a picture book about the circus I had when a very young child. One of the pictures in the book frightened me. It was of a woman in the show who wore very bright red lipstick. She was supposed to be a glamorous circus performer, but I had to turn the page very quickly to avoid looking at her for some reason. She just seemed creepy to me.
 

PeteS

Seeking refuge
Joined
Dec 5, 2016
Messages
2,836
I loved the scampi. i thought it was pretty although i also hadn't a clue what it was.

Some very reasonable fears in the last few posts I think. I often feel as if I am suffocating if I don't have the fan on at night even if it's freezing.
Don't think you're the only one with the fan thing - you're not.
 

Mooka

Devoted Cultist
Joined
Oct 28, 2022
Messages
172
Location
In the shadow of the ash trees, Derbyshire
Raggety is a creepy looking thing, it would make more sense for a child to be scared of him rather than a cuddly teddy bear! My dad was frightened of Looby Lou from Andy Pandy when he was little and that’s a bit weird too, so maybe it’s in the genes :D
 

Mythopoeika

I am a meat popsicle
Joined
Sep 18, 2001
Messages
48,896
Location
Inside a starship, watching puny humans from afar
I was at a further education college when a young lady I kinda fancied sat behind me in class. I turned around to face her and did a double-take. She was dressed like Rupert the Bear! No mask, just the clothes. I said 'are you... dressed like Rupert the Bear, or am I imagining it?' - and as it turned out, she was a big fan. I admitted that I had also been a fan when I was a kid, so that broke the ice a bit.
 

LymeswoldSnork

Devoted Cultist
Joined
Apr 9, 2004
Messages
165
Here's another:

(I was wondering what had happened to the lines "I say, come come, there's no need to exaggerate, old chap: I do not always speak in rhyme; that's just a load of rubbish". But on reflection, that was from a sketch about someone who works for a manufacturer of greetings cards.)
 
Last edited:

Lockardian

Cleverly disguised as a responsible adult
Joined
Oct 27, 2016
Messages
8
Location
Scotland
I always used to be scared by door handles - the kind similar to that in thw photo below. It almost looked like a face watching me - two eyes, a huge nose, and a keyhole for a mouth. They still do freak me out a bit.

Also, as a kid I was terrified of certain curtains, in particular the bottom right-angled corner. I think this stemmed from a pair of curtains we had at home where the way the hem had been sewn/folded over left a gap which looked like an eye staring at me. It didn’t help that curtains moved about in a draught so they appeared to be “alive”. My dad, who knew of my fear but obviously didn’t understand it, used to tell me bedtime stories about there being a good curtain and a bad curtain in my bedroom - I would hide under the covers and he would say “There’s a curtain coming over the bed… it’s OK, it’s the friendly one… oh no it’s not, it’s the baddie!” then whack the bedclothes with a pillow or something! I knew this was just a game of course, but when alone I was a bit scared and even remember a vivid dream about how curtains came alive by rubbing magic ointment on themselves! (How could they rub anything on themselves BEFORE they came alive though? Never mind - the dream WAS pretty scary!)

And then there were radiators - the part at the top where you put the key in to bleed the air out…. I think the common theme here is inanimate objects resembling eyes or faces. Quite a common thing, I suppose?

FE7E3F46-07E3-4A57-A80A-83039A6BF0CA.jpegDF05DFE1-9C41-40B9-B9CB-C792CEF01FAE.jpeg
 
Last edited:

catseye

Old lady trouser-smell with yesterday's knickers
Joined
Feb 1, 2010
Messages
6,061
Location
York
I always used to be scared by door handles - the kind similar to that in thw photo below. It almost looked like a face watching me - two eyes, a huge nose, and a keyhole for a mouth. They still do freak me out a bit.

Also, as a kid I was terrified of certain curtains, in particular the bottom right-angled corner. I think this stemmed from a pair of curtains we had at home where the way the hem had been sewn/folded over left a gap which looked like an eye staring at me. It didn’t help that curtains moved about in a draught so they appeared to be “alive”. My dad, who knew of my fear but obviously didn’t understand it, used to tell me bedtime stories about there being a good curtain and a bad curtain in my bedroom - I would hide under the covers and he would say “There’s a curtain coming over the bed… it’s OK, it’s the friendly one… oh no it’s not, it’s the baddie!” then whack the bedclothes with a pillow or something! I knew this was just a game of course, but when alone I was a bit scared and even remember a vivid dream about how curtains came alive by rubbing magic ointment on themselves! (How could they rub anything on themselves BEFORE they came alive though? Never mind - the dream WAS pretty scary!)

And then there were radiators - the part at the top where you put the key in to bleed the air out…. I think the common theme here is inanimate objects resembling eyes or faces. Quite a common thing, I suppose?

View attachment 60838View attachment 60839
I think what's common is children having these - to adults 'irrational - fears, and the adults not taking the time to actually explain to the child what's causing the fear. If someone had just explained to me what the ceiling lump was, rather than just dismissing it with 'it's electrics' (what use is THAT to a five year old who only knows that 'electrics' are dangerous?) I would have been fine. Maybe lifted me up so I could touch it and realise it was just a bump on a ceiling, not animate.

@Lockardian - did anyone ever take a door handle to bits to show you how they worked? Or unpick the lumpy bit of curtain to show that it was just rubbish stitching?
 

Mooka

Devoted Cultist
Joined
Oct 28, 2022
Messages
172
Location
In the shadow of the ash trees, Derbyshire
I can certainly see how a young mind might find things like door handles with their spooky little ‘faces‘ scary. I think the impression of eyes (even if they aren‘t actually eyes) looking at you is a very common fear. Material can certainly be creepy too with the different shapes it can form, especially the billowing nature of curtains and how they appear to move on their own. Regards curtains, when I was young I always had to check behind my bedroom curtains at night before I went to sleep (along with looking in my wardrobe and under my bed!). I couldn’t settle until I knew there wasn’t somebody/something lurking, waiting to pounce when I got in bed.

That’s certainly true @catseye, a fear could be nipped in the bud this way. What’s worse is when you get an adult who likes to tease a child about their irrational fear or manages to exacerbate it in some way. As somebody who suffers with phobias I know how important it is dealing the right way with fears in children.
 

Trevp666

Don't blame me - I didn't cook it.
Joined
May 29, 2009
Messages
9,948
Location
Flitwick, Bedfordshire, 1874
Pfft.
People just take the piss though cos they think it's funny.
My brother (4 years older than me) was, for some reason, scared of bananas.
So of course I used to chase him around the house with a banana whenever the opportunity arose.
 
Top