Here There Be Dragons

I can’t understand how people continue to ignore the truth when it’s right in front of their face.

I’m not talking about subjective reality like which politician is more corrupt or which sports team deserves to win the Super Bowl. I’m talking about solid facts.

Take for example the dragon that buzzed New York City earlier this morning. Millions of people have seen it. Even if they weren’t outside looking up when it flew over, they have by now seen footage from hundreds of cell phone cameras uploaded to You Tube within minutes. Or, for the old-fashioned types, they’ve seen clips on the news.

Myself, I was walking through Washington Square Park when his enormous winged shadow appeared, racing across the ground at a frightening speed. I say “he” although to tell the truth, I have no idea how to tell the difference between a male and a female dragon. It was, however a European dragon with a thick body and long bat-like wings, not an Asian dragon with its serpentine body and long whiskers.

But of course, it couldn’t have been a real dragon.

That’s what everyone is saying. It was a hoax. It was a drone. It was a kite. It was a trick of the light. It was one of those crowd-sourced advertising campaigns that are all the rage right now.

Anything but a real dragon.

People see the weird and unexplainable every day. They hear footsteps in empty hallways. They see things that aren’t there when they blink. They’re staring at a stranger on the Subway because their eyelids just closed sideways, and when it doesn’t happen again, they convince themselves that it was a trick of their imagination.

I don’t know how people can just ignore the truth all around them, but I think I’m starting to figure out why. If a real, live dragon just flew over NYC in the middle of the day, then what else is possibly out there? Are there really vampires? Zombies? Werewolves? All sorts of nasties and hairy scaries waiting to pop out of the shadows and consume us?

Of course they are.

And that, dear friends, is why no one can believe their own eyes when a dragon lands on the Washington Square Park arch and flaps its enormous wings hard enough to strip the leaves off the trees. Because if dragons exist, then they weren’t just imagining that their favorite barista has a forked tongue and that thing that knocked over their trashcans last night was most certainly not a raccoon.

Maybe people are better off ignoring the truth. I know it was easier to sleep at night before I knew what was really out there in the dark. But if I had to choose between ignorant bliss and the knowledge to defend myself and my loved ones…

Well, I guess you already know my decision.

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