Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Rooms and Radiolab

Aaah back to listening to Radiolab. It's been a long time, and it feels good to listen to something thought provoking again. First I listened to Strangers in the Mirror, a really interesting show about a disorder called prosopagnosia, or "face blindness". Basically, people with this disorder cannot recognize the faces of people around them. Say you go on a date with someone, and you laugh and have an amazing time with them all night. The next day, you run into them on the street, and you have no idea who this person is. They're talking about the good time you had last night, and you can remember laughing with someone at dinner, but you can't, for the life of you, recognize their face. Or, you've been married for years and years and years to your husband/wife, but you couldn't pick them out in a crowd. It's totally crazy. Can you imagine living your life like this? One of the men said he gives himself visual cues to help him remember people, like, the colour of their hair, or the way they move.

The other show I listened to was Deception, and it was, predictably, all about lying. They talked about facial expressions, and the minuscule hints our faces betray as to how we're really feeling, and how these can help you tell if someone is lying. They told a story about a woman named Hope, who was a pathological liar turned con artist, and how she affected the people she duped. And then they talked to a couple scientists who made this questionnaire full of questions that are typically true of almost everyone, but are embarrassing enough that very few people will admit to them being true. Questions like, "Have you ever wanted to kill yourself to get back at someone?" "Have you ever wanted to rape someone/be raped by someone?" "Do you enjoy your own bowel movements?" Things that you would answer positively to. The people who denied these questions are liars, but they found that these liars generally succeeded more in things like sports, business and working in teams. In the case of sports, they tell themselves "I am the best. I'm going to win this because I am better than everybody here." This may not necessarily be true, but they do end up doing better than the people who told the truth on the questionnaire.

Talking to my friend Bryce about bees now. Did they always know how to make hives, or did they learn it on their own?

All I've done today is wake up late and clean my room. I feel kind of pathetic, but glad I got the room cleaning out of the way. It's always so satisfying when the job is finally done. The one thing I particularly like about this tiny room I have now is that it is so fucking easy to keep clean. There is one small closet, some space under my bed, and limited floorspace. I have 2 dressers, a bunk bed, a vanity and a bookshelf crammed in here. If I want to clean up, I don't generally have a sprawling mess on my hands, because there is nowhere for all of my things to sprawl. My old was at least 3 times the size of this, and that just meant there was 3 times the space for usless things. The closet was packed with a lot of clothes that weren't even mine, old childhood belongings, our dress-up box, box's of I-don't-know-what, and just... ugh, it makes me all depressed when I think about it. I just didn't like being in my room because it had gotten to a point where the clutter was uncontrollable, and even sleeping in it made me uncomfortable. But now, with my neat little space, I spend most of my time in it when I get home. I love how small it is. Those two pictures? In the one on the left, the picture was taken from the corner of my vanity near the door, and in the one on the left, the picture was taken from right in front of my closet. It is a small, small space, but I really do love it.

I ended up falling asleep at 6 am last night (this morning?). It's very hard to fall asleep when there's light streaming through your window. I want to buy like, those sleep masks. My new insomniac self would find them incredibly handy.

But I think I'd just hit rock bottom last night. No more of this shit. I remember when it started. I'd routinely stay up until 1, then 2, 3, more recently 4, and then, in the last few days, 5 and now 6. Fuck! But no more! Tonight I will make myself go to bed by 1 am at the very latest. I have a note taped to one of the shelves in my room that says "GO TO BED BEFORE 1 AM MORON!". Not that I listen to it much.

Yes, I know I spelled 'before' wrong.

Party planning, preparing for Tanis' arrival. I was stressing out about cleaning out the spare room, but when my dad and I took a look at it, most of it is just his tools, which he can easily cart away to his storage, and empty cardboard boxes, which we have a million of for some reason. Then a little vacuuming, and ta-da, should be good as new.

Also, trying to get back into drawing my comic again. I wish I could tell you what it's about, but I don't want someone to steal my idea! Paranoia! All I can do is give you one of the sources of my inspiration:

In the afterlife, you relive all your experiences, but this time with the events re-shuffled into a new order. You see, all the moments that share a quality are grouped together.

For instance, you spend 2 months driving the street in front of your house. 7 months having sex. You sleep for 30 years without opening your eyes. For 5 months straight you flip through magazines while sitting on a toilet. You take all your pain at once, all 27 intense hours of it (bones break, cars crash, skin is cut, babies are born). But once you make it through, it’s agony free for the rest of your afterlife.
That doesn’t always mean it’s pleasant. I mean, you spend 6 days clipping your nails, 15 months looking for lost items, 18 months waiting in line, 2 years of boredom (staring out a bus window, sitting in an airport terminal, waiting online).

One year reading books. Your eyes hurt though, and you itch because you can’t take a shower until it’s your time to take your marathon 200 day shower.

2 weeks wondering what happens when you die, 1 minute realizing your body’s falling, 77 hours of confusion, 1 hour realizing you’ve forgotten someone’s name, 3 weeks realizing you’re wrong, 2 days lying, 6 weeks waiting for a green light, 7 hours vomiting, 14 minutes experiencing pure joy.

3 months doing laundry, 15 hours writing your signature, 2 days tying shoelaces... 67 days of heartbreak. 5 weeks driving lost, 3 days calculating restaurant tips, 51 days deciding what to wear, 9 days pretending you know what is being talked about, 2 weeks counting money, 18 hours staring into the refrigerator, 34 days longing, 6 months watching commercials, 4 weeks sitting in thought, wondering if there’s something better I could be doing with my time... 3 years swallowing food, 5 days working buttons and zippers, 4 minutes wondering what your life would be like if you re-shuffled the order of events.

In this part of the afterlife you imagine something analogous to your earthly life, and the thought is blissful. A life where episodes are split into tiny, swallow able pieces: Moments do not endure, where one experiences the joy of jumping from one event to the next like a child, hopping from spot to spot on the burning sand.

1 comment:

  1. I bet if you crossed the moron off of that, you'd listen more. Positive reinforcement works better.