Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Oh, internet. I've got something to say, but I can't quite get to it. I'm feeling all wrung out, my little brain soft and limp and incapable of compiling sentences, and I've gone back to not touching people with my palms. I need a rest, another dozen encounters with friendly dogs, and approximately fifteen hugs. Sometimes language just isn't enough.

Instead, here is a list of some of the things I've been reading about and thinking about that I will explain in greater detail as soon as I figure out how to make them into a story and a metaphor:

Stockholm Syndrome.

The SS Eastland, a passenger steamer that just fell over sideways in the Chicago river in 1915 because the addition of a whole lot of lifeboats, thanks to rules made after the sinking of the Titanic, made its center of gravity too high. 844 people were killed, including some entire families that were wiped out.

The Radium Girls of Undark, a group of women who worked putting radium-based glow paint on watch faces in the late 1800's. They used their lips and tongues to make the brushes keep their shape and eventually all succumbed to radium poisoning, the bones of their faces riddled with holes.

Charles Bonnet Syndrome, where people that are going blind start to have vivid hallucinations, often of faces, because their brains have gotten just plain bored with the lack of information coming in from their eyes.

The 1814 Beer Flood in London, which drowned eight people, and the one guy that died of alcohol poisoning in it.

Lake Peigneur, the 11-foot-deep freshwater lake above a salt mine that was drained in an oil drilling accident in 1980 and was turned into a 1300-foot-deep saltwater lake.

Lake Vostok.

Adam Rainer, who was a dwarf until he was 21, when his pituitary kicked back in. By the time he was 32, he stood 7'2".

Proprioception Deficit Disorder, when a person loses all knowledge of the relative positions of their body parts, and anosognosia, when people are completely unaware that there is something wrong with them.

All of these things (plus a bunch more) are sloshing around inside my head trying to reverse their own polarities and figure out a way to stick together. I'm sure that something interesting will happen--our brains are nothing if not pattern identifying machines--but in the meantime maybe someone should tell me some jokes.

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