“You need not leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. You need not even listen, simply wait, just learn to become quiet, and
still, and solitary. The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked. It has no choice; it will roll in ecstasy at your feet.”
- Franz Kafka
I’m no doctor, but it’s called “plasticity.”
When your brain automatically compensates for something. You know, like when a blind dude has a super sharp sense of touch, or a deaf chick has
really good eyesight. That’s their brain making up for their disability by giving them a little power boost in a different area.
I didn’t come up with the term and I don’t know why they call it that. But they do, and it’s a real thing.
I heard about all this from a guy I know that is part of a clinical study. The study uses people that don’t have one of their senses…blind
people, deaf people, whatever you call people that can’t smell things…and hooks a machine up to their power boosted senses to fill in for the
sense that doesn’t work. By doing this you can actually have your ears see for you, or your tongue hear for you.
No joke. I know it sounds weird. But my friend says it works. He’s blind as a bat and he played catch with someone for the first time in two
years the other day.
He said there’s a camera that acts as his eyes. A cord from the camera actually goes onto his tongue and sends a message to his brain using the
power boosted sensory receptors on his tongue. The message it sends is something like “hey, this is your eyes speaking, and I’m seeing a ball
coming toward you.” His brain doesn’t really know the difference and responds like “thanks eyes, haven’t heard from you in a while, welcome
back…let’s catch that ball.”
My friend says that he can actually see the ball. I mean really see it.
They pull all this off with this
disabled people wear. It’s pretty slick.
I have all my senses by the way. All of them.
* * *
This is how it all started: My blind friend Jerry says to me “you know what I love?”
“What?” I said.
“Sex.” He said.
I kind of laughed at him. Jerry was super high at the time.
“No no no” he said. “I mean it was good before right…but now
, without my eyes…you know all blind and stuff…my skin is like
man. It’s like when a chick even breathes on me I think I’m gonna die
man. It’s awe-some
No sight, power boosted skin.
He made it sound so good I thought about poking my eyes out right there.
* * *
I live in Spokane, Washington in the United States of America
. It’s a nice town. They had the
World’s Fair there in…what…1972 I think. Sometime in the 1970s anyway.
I don’t think the world has given Spokane the time of day since then.
That’s about to change for real.
Spokane is going to be the new Bethlehem.
* * *
I’m a drug dealer, by the way.
Not that it matters, I just didn’t want you to find out later and feel like I’ve been dishonest with you.
* * *
Sacred Heart Medical Center is just south of downtown. Just south of the freeway. There’s a park between Sacred Heart and the freeway. It’s a
one swing and slide kind of park. Kind of a patch of grass and weeds that grew out of the concrete. I hang out there a lot. I can get the downtown
business there but, more importantly, I can get the hospital business.
So many people come out of a hospital in bad shape. Most people come out of the hospital having lost something…a limb, a loved one, their dignity.
They’re looking to compensate. They need a power boost.
Well one day I’m hanging out and some chick is walking down the road with this helmet contraption on. She was hot. And looking hot while wearing a
helmet is tough. She’s being followed by some nerd in a fleece jacket and he’s saying stuff like “Can you hear that?” And the hot chick is
describing different things around her. Weirdest thing.
I asked what they were doing. The hot chick is named Jackie. The nerd is named Devin. Turns out hot Jackie is deaf. There’s a microphone on her
helmet that is connected to these glasses that show her different colors that relate to what sounds are going on around her. The colors change to
reflect how loud a noise is, what the pitch of the noise is, the direction it’s coming from. Hot Jackie’s super powered eyes are so good at
reading the colors that her brain actually lets her eyes hear for her.
Think of it like Braille. You know, how someone can see with their fingers. Now add a helmet and a microphone and a camera and other stuff. It’s
the same thing. Playing to your strength.
Devin the nerd is a research scientist. He explained everything to me while Jackie watched the whole conversation with a big smile on her face. The
only time Jackie frowned was when Devin explained that they were running out of grant money and were going to have to end the study.
“Your lucky day,” I said. “I’d be happy to fund your research.”
It made hot Jackie smile to see me say that.
* * *
You’re picturing me as a thugged out high school dropout just because I’m a drug dealer.
Stop that. Those are stereotypes.
I got my college degree from a University in California. I got my suit from an Italian tailor in Seattle. And I got my cash from selling smack in
Microsoft was tempting, but you just can’t beat a narcotics-based income. Especially in Spokane where you can sell enough skag by noon to buy a
mansion in the hills that evening.
* * *
The first time I had sex with Jackie she was wearing her hearing helmet. The second time we did it I asked if I could try wearing it.
What a show. Seriously.
* * *
Wearing Jackie’s helmet reminded me of something. It reminded me that I don’t have super powered eyes like she does. Because she’s deaf, those
lights cause a reaction in her brain that I just can’t pull off in mine. My brain won’t let me because I’m not disabled and I don’t deserve