The pain of a long hard hike signals the pleasure of a smoothie awaiting at Wapiti Woolies in Greenwater. Or it could be a warning that X-rays await at the University of Washington medical clinic to determine whether ribs are cracked or merely bruised. The time and trouble of getting a haircut can be well worth the exhilarating result unless your barber or hairdresser was hung over. I have always dreaded going to Reconciliation (nee Confession), the dentist, the doctor, and the car dealership. But the torture of those anticipations actually enhances the thrill of surviving the experiences, unless you have been excommunicated, diagnosed with a root canal, or told you are no longer covered by warranty or insurance. Combining fears of the known and unknown leads to great relief when the danger passes. The bigger the fear, the bigger the celebration. People who recover from a serious accident or medical condition are known to really appreciate life more afterwards. People who do not recover may end up in a more heavenly place. So potentially you might be a winner any which way. This may be why Alfred E. Neumann always says, “What, me worry?” He inspired a huge cult of people who embrace this philosophy. Yet maybe he was spouting nonsense and could just as easily have proclaimed the anagram “Wormy wreath.” Neumann has been labeled a Communist, so he could be capable of promoting Russian biological warfare aimed at infecting our holiday wreaths with killer worms invisible to the naked eye. I cannot keep straight whether the Democrats or the Republicans are in cahoots with the Russians but after the good guys win, I am going to enjoy a large cookie with my extra large smoothie from Wapiti Woolies.