Dr. Joel, fellow doctors, friends,
It is my professional medical opinion that the Volunteer Nation is suffering from zoophobia, a fear of animals. These include but are not limited to:
- Bears (both the California and Armani subspecies)
The best treatment for a phobia is immersion therapy. In treatment of a phobia, immersion therapy entails gradually exposing the patient to that which he or she fears under circumstances where he or she feels safe. The desired effect of this gradual exposure is to desensitize the patient to his or her fear in order to make this fear more manageable.
Following the recommendations set forth in the Rocky Top Talk Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, here are the steps I recommend for treating the Volunteer Nation's zoophobia:
- Create a fear hierarchy - ideally, arrange fears in order of the magnitude of discomfort each causes. If that isn't possible, arrange them in the order they appear on the schedule.
- Teach the patient a relaxation exercise - have the patient breath deep and remind himself or herself that Tim Tebow was held to under 100 yards passing last week.
- Gradually expose the patient to that which he or she fears - instruct the patient to buy tickets to the Auburn game this weekend. Have the patient step away and perform the relaxation exercise if exposure to a certain fear becomes too much to bear.
- When a patient is able to cope with one fear, move on to the next fear in the hierarchy - tickets for the Georgia game will probably be cheap after Alabama beats them.
Volunteer Nation also suffers from a separate, severe case of herpetophopia - a fear of reptiles, specifically gators. Unfortunately, we will not get a chance to treat the Volunteer Nation's herpetophopia with immersion therapy for another year. In the meantime, we should focus our efforts on treating the less specific zoophobia
If you know a member of Volunteer Nation suffering from zoophobia, instruct him or her to buy a ticket to the Auburn game so they can start their treatment with exposure to Eagles and TIgers. I will be on call near Jordan-Hare Stadium this Saturday to answer any questions. Just don't expect me to be sober.
Yours in professional medical conduct,