Tuesday, November 18, 2014

What Does This Sound Look Like?

I don't know if I've mentioned this before, but I have synesthesia. Specifically, in some sounds I can hear shapes and/or light forms, and I also have a spacial sequence form of synesthesia in which I have always experienced months and dates as being fixed points in space. I know right, what the hell am I talking about?

For most of my life, I didn't know this wasn't how everyone experiences the world. Then one day I made on offhand comment when I was watching a baseball game with my family that Tony Gwynn "has the roundest voice I have ever heard" (BECAUSE HE DOES) and a room full of people turned around and looked at me as if I had spontaneously sprouted a second head and said head was that of a giraffe. Of course, I now know that I have an amazing superpower as well as an explanation for my eerily good recall of dates. However, my ability to explain what it's like is basically limited to reciting my theory that the reason people use drugs like acid is so they can feel the same way I feel all of the time. It's not explainable. I don't see the space calendar, I don't see any shapes floating around when Tony Gwynn starts talking, it just is fixed in space, it is round. See, totally clear now isn't it?

Anyway the whole point of telling you this is that this video is amazing, and the sand thing provides a better example of what I'm talking about than my shitty explanations could ever approach and that's not even the best part of the video. The water, you guys. The water and the coil. Dude.


emptystress said...

I don't think I have synesthesia myself, but I definitely get where you're coming from with sounds having shapes. I have a friend with whom every once in a while we have a discussion about how some words are 'pointy' or whatever, and I have a hard time describing the way things sound without using shapes. Like, when my sister sings, the way I describe it is that her voice becomes 'bowl shaped'. Which obviously makes no sense to anyone but me... It's always nice to come across people who would actually understand what the hell I was talking about XD

Anonymous said...

OMG Tesla Coil! I have one of those! My boyfriend made it, its smaller than the one in the video, and you don't need the Faraday Suit to play with it, but its still epically awesome. As for synesthesia, I'm pretty sure I don't have it, but I do get a vague sense of it when I pay attention.

Anonymous said...

Hey, it's Carey ;)
I came by to find your link to the 50 shades review and read this - I had to comment on it. Months and the days of the week have like, a fixed picture in my head every time I think of them. And I've never 1) realized everyone didn't think this way and 2) heard anyone describe it so well before. Just wanted to add that I'm kinda relieved!!

WildBanshee said...

I totally have it too and love how you describe it! Voices can be roundy, in fact, voices that aren't grate on my ears! I can also sometimes smell colour!
Love your writing!

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