My Anxiety Sends a Letter, by Andi Sharavsky

Dear Ms. Sharavsky,

It has been brought to my attention that at exactly 11:03 pm, after calling your mother, moisturizing your face, and paying your monthly student loan bill, you folded the final item of your clean laundry. You have therefore temporarily exhausted your list of mundane tasks and concerns, and are undoubtedly eager for a restful night of sleep. Instead, please choose one of the following irrational fears and allow it to consume you. Please keep in mind that you will not be reimbursed for the cost of counseling or marijuana, and your roommates have issued a formal statement that checking you for swollen glands makes them feel weird.

  • Remember that text you sent a few days ago? The one you thought could be misinterpreted as racist? It was definitely racist. You are a racist. Your non-racist friend who received your racist text is currently forwarding your racist thoughts to everyone in your life who has ever claimed to love you unconditionally. It turns out their love has one condition: no racists. You will die alone and a racist.

  • When you were 15, you gave Corey Goldenblatt a hand job in your best friend’s basement. You went to the bathroom immediately afterward and did not wash your hands thoroughly enough before you peed, so you are now pregnant. Everything about this defies the laws of science, but the Internet says a woman gave birth to a giant worm, so you are now a single mother.
  • You have literally never reapplied sunscreen after going in the ocean, and you had your cartilage pierced despite your mother’s warnings about the sterility of tattoo parlors. You have skin cancer and hepatitis C.
  • You sort of have to pee right now, but are too comfortable and lazy to get out of bed. You will wet the bed in your sleep and have to live with that for the rest of your life.
  • Senior year of high school, you took five shots of Goldschläger in the parking lot outside a Ben Folds concert and attempted a running leap into a stranger’s arms. You missed and fell head first into a parked car. Though you showed no signs of even a concussion at the time, your brain has been silently hemorrhaging for years. Decide how you feel about life support.
  • At least one of those speed bumps that you claimed “came out of nowhere” was actually a human being.
  • All the writers, actors, comedians, poets, clowns, voice actors, street performers, DJs, and magicians you have ever dated are about to meet each other and become best friends. Together, they will develop a sitcom pilot that satirizes your emotional sluttiness yet complete disinterest in actual sex. It will be really, really good. Far better than anything you will ever write. NBC and HBO will fight over it, and Tina Fey herself will publicly applaud its nuanced treatment of a leading female character.
  • You once left a tampon in for 12 hours. YOU ARE TOXICALLY SHOCKED.
  • In third grade, you scribbled your older sister’s signature on an incomplete Hebrew School practice log. Forgery is a federal crime and Temple Beth Shalom is coming after you.
  • You were right about sharing wireless Internet with your roommates – it absolutely does allow them to see everything you do on your computer, so they definitely know how frequently you google, “can you make yourself pregnant with your own hand after giving a hand job?”

If none of the above options appeal to you, you may instead frantically research the ages of all the people you admire and calculate how much time you have to either reach your artistic potential or be sucked into a swirling vortex of failure. You may also pick incessantly at the callus developing between your hammer toe and pinky toe because you are a troll.

I thank you for your cooperation.


Your Anxiety

PS: In response to your query, no I cannot “at least” help you lose weight, as I am affiliated with Your Emotional Eating.

Andi Sharavsky is a writer, performer, and director living in Chicago. Her work has appeared previously in The Humor Section, on McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, and in the Chicago Tribune. She tweets here.

The Humor Section features a piece of original humor writing each week. To submit, send an email to Brian Boone.

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