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Articles by Brian Jackson

Educating the Masses, Part Three of Several

29 April 2010

Today's Question: Why are people so afraid of spiders?

People aren't naturally averse to spiders per se - it's the number eight that really freaks people out.

Try this experiment some time: pose the riddle "what is two times four" to random people on the street and watch their facial expression when you follow it immediately with the answer: "eight, of course!"

The look of disgust you will undoubtedly receive is a reflex conditioned into mankind when we still lived in forests and jungles, and reflects a singular survival instinct: avoidance of the "black ocho" - an eight-leaved poisonous plant that bears venomous spores between the months of April and November every year. Truly a terrifying plant.

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