"A person can stand almost anything except a succession of ordinary days."
- Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe
According to Medicinenet, The Baskerville Effect is “a fatal heart attack triggered by extreme psychological stress.” The term derives from the Sherlock Holms mystery in which Charles Baskerville suffers a fatal heart attack due to extreme psychological stress.
“The term "Baskerville effect" was coined in 2001 in the course of a research study that found Chinese Americans and Japanese Americans had a 7% greater death rate from heart disease on the 4th day of the month (BMJ 2001;323:1443-1446). There was no such peak mortality for white Americans. Since both Chinese and Japanese regard the number four as unlucky, it appears that heart fatalities increase on psychologically stressful occasions.”
While I thought it was delusion and karma that caused all my negative actions, anxiety is in there somewhere a lot lately. But that was then. Back in the day, I worried more about tomorrow instead of enjoying today.
I am getting better about letting go – at least of the psychological stress of imagining hounds are trying to kill me. Since my latest heart operation, I can drink more. More trial and less error, y’all. It looks like my heart may hold out a while yet. Having learned a lot from surviving my surprises this past year, I am less likely to succumb to the Baskerville effect any time soon – barring extraordinary surprises.
And anyway, the term is only 15 years old: probably, not old enough that it’s been listed as a Cause of Death on somebody’s death certificate. My short-term goal is not be the first in this state. If I make it thru the coming week, that mission will be accomplished. Then, they can release the hounds here because I will be enjoying ordinary days somewhere else.