Shape-shifting Republicans, for-profit healthcare, Monsanto, chemtrails, solar events, polar shifts … even FEMA reminds us that “it’s not a matter of if, but when” the Big One will make Arizona beachfront property. Scared yet? To put things in perspective, the California Science Center developed 6,000 square feet of hands-on ooga-booga designed to put our minds at ease. Anchored by Mr. Goose Bumps, a gargantuan visible man who explains how fear triggers physiological responses in the brain, you can chortle at the Wall of Phobias or play What Are the Odds?, a game of causes of death and their statistical probabilities. Dive into the Challenge Course, confronting animals, electric shock, loud noises and falling “in a safe and enjoyable environment.” The hands-on Fear Lab looks at memory, brain pathways and structures, with mammalian ganglia to eyeball and “anime-style” amygdala drawings to color. There’s also “The Fun Side of Fear” and a video presentation on fears as they intersect with history, entertainment and culture. Fun for conspiratorial hypochondriacs of all ages, Goose Bumps! reassures us that, to a great degree, it really is all in our heads.

March 11-April 24, 2011

Advertising disclosure: We may receive compensation for some of the links in our stories. Thank you for supporting LA Weekly and our advertisers.