I used to be scared of jalepeños. And anything beyond mild salsa. Now I crave excessive amounts of sriracha hot sauce and always always add the hot peppers to every Potbelly's sandwich I order and actually pick up bags of habenero chile chips that go by the name of Mama Zuma's Revenge. I mean, just look at the scary lady gracing the chip packaging:
She's packing an ammo belt loaded with chiles! You know that means serious business.
Perhaps my unwarranted fear of spicy things was exacerbated by the Spanish teacher in high school who force fed us (literally! it was part of our grade, and any grade-obsessed high school student recognizes that "it's part of your grade!" is an absolute must!) assorted hot chiles and some of the nastiest chili-powder watermelon "candies" - something along the lines of these guys. There was the potential for scarring for life there, but it looks like I've managed to overcome.
Approach without fear! You might be pleasantly surprised! Go forth and tackle the worlds of vindaloo and the items on the Thai menu with a three chile pepper ranking and then pop an Atomic Fireball afterwards.
All things considered, it is good to know that according to the fine experts consulted by the staff at Serious Eats, it appears that I likely won't die from chile peppers themselves. Phew. Time to tackle the next spicy adventure.
That's right, folks, you're going to get some posts like this over the month of November. Get 'em while they're hot.