Synaesthesia

Wikipedia defines synesthesia as a neurological phenomenon in which stimulation of one sensory or cognitive pathway leads to automatic, involuntary experiences in a second sensory or cognitive pathway. In ancient Greek syn means “together” and aisthēsis means “sensation”. So some people associate numbers with colours, sounds with colours, pictures with sounds, sounds with pictures, etc. Sounds really weird doesn’t it? I think it is a gift. I think it can help people do extraordinary things. Make music from numbers, make paintings from sounds, etc. It is very hard to explain synesthesia. There are two main kinds. Associative and projective. Associative causes people to feel one sense together with another. Like feel a sound as a colour. Projective is more interesting. It is when people actually perceive two senses at once. What would it be like to visualize sound? I’m not talking about the you tube videos of visualizing actual pressure waves. I’m talking about the kind where people actually see things associated with certain sounds. The Wikipedia example nails it down: For example, in the common form chromesthesia (sound to color) a projector may hear a trumpet and see an orange triangle in space while an associator might hear a trumpet and think very strongly that it sounds “orange”. An orange triangle in space? What in the world would that look like? Trippy as hell I would assume. Would distract you a lot though. I believe I have a sensory mix up as well. This is my first ever revelation of the ‘gift’ to anyone ever. Its not as cool as the ones discussed above. In fact its kinda funny. I taste words. Yup. Not sounds. Just words. Every single word I wrote in this blog, I have tasted. Yes, you are reading stuff I have licked with my tongue. It is really hard to explain and it will not make any sense but here goes: ‘Words’=potato chips with cream n onion dip, ‘simply’= pudding, ‘torch’= spicy potato chips, ‘dark’= chocolate(obviously), ‘linger’= sour, ‘free’=strawberry cream, etc. I am not even sure if this is a rare condition. Do any of you have similar ‘gifts’? Please let me know. I have the perfect excuse for being hungry all the time. I read a lot.

Evolution

Evolution fascinates me. I like to think of it as biological reprogramming. Life’s adaptive circuit. An organism that is infinitely small in the universe, absolutely clueless about its surroundings slowly adapts to survive as if it were alien to its own surroundings. It learns from its mistakes. Does it know that the changes in its body are being triggered by itself? How confused must have it been? Reminds me of Ice age. Some lose the ability to breathe in water. Some lose weight. Some grow tails. Bloddy hell, some fly!
How cool is nature? It just didn’t follow one path that lead to success, it followed millions. It gave some organisms feathers, some gills, some limbs, etc. It is constantly trying different approaches. Has it stopped it’s trials now? I personally think it hasn’t. Is a three-parent baby a consequence of evolution? Maybe! The concept of just two genders has always been a mistake. Evolution will not stop. It’s magic is endless.
I find it a little hard to grasp Kevin Spacey’s world in K-pax. Their children are raised by different parents? That’s a little too weird for me. That’s a little too evolved!

Evolution also provides exceptional survival tactics. Like how cool is our immune system? I’ve read that many of early man’s survival skills have moulded us. Scared of creepy hairy spiders? To early man, they meant trouble. The knowledge been passed on through genes I guess. Scared of thunder or any sudden loud sounds? To early man, sudden loud sounds usually mean big trouble. Like floods, earthquakes, volcanoes, etc. There are organisms that can live without food, water and air for many years. There are organisms that can rejuvenate themselves. There are organisms that can survive in bloody space!(Tardigrades). It is these kinds of survival techniques that leads me to think that life anywhere is inevitable. As a great thinker once said “Life will find a way”!

Search for life

Why is there a sudden push for the search for life elsewhere? I might be wrong but as of late I feel as though I have been reading alot of news about individuals, companies and counties starting to look for friends anywhere outside the Earth. ‘Friends’, what a polite way to call them. Isn’t it? I wish we treated them that way too. I am frankly more afraid of what we would do to them than what they would do to us.
I believe that the universe speaks to us in mysterious ways. It may speak to us in the form of rogue incidents. Have you ever felt that you were at some random place at exacly the right time for absolutely no reason? Did you experience something spectacular at that random place? Did you meet someone who you will cherish for the rest of your life? If you haven’t had such experiences, don’t fret it because I’m damn sure you will. The universe may also voice itself in the form of people. People who like to educate. People who like to spread the word. People who do not push their ideals down your throat. Titans. That’s what I like to call them. A few people who have influenced me deeply are Neil deGrasse Tyson, Carl Sagan,  Stephen Hawking, Sir Isaac Newton, Nikola Tesla, Jim Carrey, yes Jim carrey the actor, Clint Eastwood( especially for his character in Gran Torino) and Robin Williams( for his character in everything. I hear that he was a great human being as well). Sorry ladies. I know for sure that there are lady Titans out there but I’m just too ignorant. If one of you could suggest few names I could spend my time productively by researching about them. Have you watched Stephen Colbert interview Neil De Grasse Tyson at Montclair Kimberley? That interview is to die for. Cosmos a Space Time Odessey( hosted by Neil) is a show that blew my mind like the big bang(if there ever was one). 
Anyway, so why the sudden push for search for alien life? I do not know. But it makes me happy. Neil explains in one of his lectures that major scientific breakthroughs all had government backing and specific drivers. One main driver being fear. Countries have a fear of being inferior(referring to the space race).  What if the sun starts fading from tomorrow? I feel like we would have found a new energy source in a few days. Is the search for life being pushed by a driver like that? I do not know.

To my grandfather, the study of socialism is more important than space exploration. He believes that social development is the key to a bright future. He says that research in socialism is more important as it will help in human upliftment. Another big point that he made is that the topics that socialist studies deal with is something that is happening all around us, all the time and thus all of us are able to get a first hand account. However, he 100% appreciates the effort that goes into search for life.  So much that, he literally telephoned me out of sheer excitement after learning about the discovery of gravitational waves!

I recall Neil deGrasse Tyson, saying that we humans are made of star stuff. Evethough I kinda knew the whole deal about how basic molecules make up everything in the universe, I was just awestruck at that statement. We are made of that! How cool is that? Those things that float around in the night sky giving out spectacular lights are made of the same stuff we are made of! And yet we are not interested in them. We want to better our living conditions here. I know there are people dying here. Literally dying of hunger, violence, etc. People are forced to suffer inhumane conditions. These things make me wonder too if we should be looking out there or down here. I believe in science. I know that research on things ‘out there’ have and will benefit people down here in ways we cannot imagine. I would love to believe that the answers to questions like Who am I ? Why are we here? What the hell are we supposed to do? can be found out through self introspection and deep thinking. I would love to believe that. I would love to believe that the answers to everything would just pop into our brains one fine day through dedicated meditation. I admire the people who strive to attain enlightenment. But the sad part is that they themselves do not know if and when they’ll achieve it. What I do know for certain is that research ‘out there’ is getting us closer to the answers with added bonuses! It can also help us answer another troubling question. Where the hell did we come from!

Aah 2001 A Space Odessey. What a movie! I can watch it again and again. That voice of the computer singing ‘Daisy’ is so damn weird and cool at the same time. The great Stanley Kubrick’s classic was way ahead of its time. Sad part is that I do not know anyone who likes that movie as much as I do. I know there are many out there but my circle is small! On the other hand I know many interstellar fans. That movie blew people’s minds but it didn’t blow mine. Very nice visuals though! What does the movie have to do with the title of the blog? Nothing. I like to talk about movies. Deal with it. The Space Odessey explains in beautiful detail the ‘less talked about’ facts of human evolution. Life on Earth began in water. Organisms started to swim. They crept out of the water. They started to crawl, walk, run and fly. So what’s the next stage? I think it’s out there in space. Waiting for us. Just like the movie suggests. So imagine a scenario where during our course of time in the water(during that stage in evolution), we spend more time and energy in bettering the living conditions instead of trying to move onto land. How different would the world be. Of course, we did not posses that level of intelligence during our time in the water. So you could say that coming out of the water onto land was an inevitable stage in evolution. Now, we have a conscience. We are intelligent. We are ‘human’. It’s up to us to decide how to evolve.

Perception of time

A friend once told me how when he was a little kid he had stumbled upon a wandering beetle(I had to google the spelling of beetle. Not a big fan of the Beatles though!). It was moving real slow, doing things that beetles do. He wondered how the beetle perceived time in comparison to how we(humans) perceived time. Pretty deep stuff for a small kid to be thinking! He’s really proud of himself for that!
The beetle begins its life, lives and dies. All of this happens in a short span of time. Short span of time to who? Us, humans. We do not know how the beetle perceives its life time. It might actually feel the same way we feel about our life span! So while the beetle may appear to move slow, for the beetle itself, things maybe happening at a pace that it perceives to be normal.
Weird! Super weird! Stuff like this keeps me curious. A while ago I was living with my mom, working part time at an audio equipment store. Those days were pretty boring. So week days seemed long and the weekends seemed quite short! I now have a fulltime job that I like more. Weekdays appear to pass by like seconds whereas weekends appear to last longer. And I like that! So it appears as though my perception of time changes depending on how much I enjoy doing something. Weirder!

Courtesy

I would like to explain this one using an example. A celebrity was requested to help promote a movie. He agreed and flew to the country where the movie was made. He had come to watch a preview. Everything went fine and he flew back. After he left, the local people started to go nuts over a stupid issue. The issue was that during his visit , he refused to drink the water that he was offered. Instead, he drank water from the bottles he had brought with him. A very similar incident happened to me(I am not a celebrity, but I have this awesome ability to INSTANTLY make people stop speaking to me). I had recently started to work at a small store in town. I had reasons to believe that the drinking water there was not safe for drinking. So I never drank water from there. This led to coworkers making fun of me. No big deal. They were very nice folks. (Except for this one prick who always found a goddamn fault with…..
Anger fading ……… fading………. gone!😀 Deep purple makes everyone happy!)
These incidents made me wonder why people can’t just respect an individual’s interests. Why can’t people just leave fellow beigns alone? I am causing zero harm! Although, I can imagine what would happen if I walk into someones house and blindly refuse to drink water from there by saying “I won’t drink water from here”(with a smiling face like Jake Gyllenhall’s face in night crawler). I understand that saying things politely will cause less trouble but my point is that it still causes trouble!

Movies

I have always loved going to the movies. I’m one of those movie goers that get super excited just by seeing the Universal Studios Logo appear on screen. In fact, I watch it from time to time on my computer! I know that’s a little extreme but It just pumps me up. So does many other movie studio logos. Then there are the audio demos. I cannot stop watching those. They showcase the cinema’s sound reproduction capabilities. I live to watch those!(I work in this industry). I like going to the movies because:
1. It is completely different from watching a movie at home. The whole ‘experience’ is different. I like the excitement in going to watch a movie!
1. It helps me relax and clears my mind
I don’t like to go to the movies alone because I like to know someone else’s take on the movie. Have you been in situation where you absolutely loved a movie while your friend hated it? Im sure you have! Have you also been in a situation where your friend could not give a proper explanation why they hated the movie? The problem with that scenario is that it ruins the experience for both of you. I don’t have a whole lot of friends so I usually end up dragging someone along. Yes, I like movies that people usually dont like. However, I don’t like to watch more than two movies a month because I do not want it to lose its exclusivity. Plus a whole lot of 3D and earpiercing sound can damage you PERMANENTLY! I haven’t watched a movie in a long time though.
I have a weird obsession with imdb ratings. If they say it’s good, its good! Yes, I look at the ratings before I go watch the movie but it doesn’t stop me from watching it unless the rating is below 6. They have pretty good movie suggestions on their website. I just wish they suggested more number of movies.
Cinemas have been changing over the years. I think audio and video technologies have been improving steadily( several audio companies claim that the audio was shit before they brought out their ‘new’ system!). The sad part is that I miss the old cinema. The ones where the projector sometimes messed up the playback, dots appeared on the screen now and then!, the sound echoed!. It just isn’t the same with 4K, Laser projection, HFR3D, ATMOS, AURO, etc. However, I 100% appreciate the new technologies. Immersive sound is to die for! I kinda feel weird though when the audio surrounds you while the video does not!
One of my dreams is to compose background scores for movies.