If you are like me, when you were a little girl you had nightmares about being stolen during a home break-in. I was convinced that my fate was to die at the hands of a homicidal maniac. Perhaps it was the bad TV my parents watched about missing children or it was the scary dark van phenomenon from the 80's (we were all afraid of men in vans). It's not to say that these things don't happen, obviously, but the risk is low. My Mom continues to send around email forwards about the guy in the parking lot who helped change some girl's tire only to discover he had rope and a scary mask in the back of his car! Ahhhh fear, it's America's aphrodisiac.
Last week, Simon Rogers of The Guardian posted this diagram of mortality rates in England and Wales. How fascinating! So for those of you who want to know what is more likely - dying in the hands of a crazed-lunatic, catching swine flu and deceasing, or drowning in the bath tub here you go.
It also, as Simon says (catch that? Simon says! Simon says, click here to read more.) in his post, gives us a realistic picture of risk. Perhaps we should worry less about the risk of walking alone at night and more about a real killer - heart disease.