Anyway, for those not familiar with the term, the sense of synaesthesia is defined as:
* A condition in which one type of stimulation evokes the sensation of another, as when the hearing of a sound produces the visualization of a color. Courtesy www.dictionary.com
** A condition caused by an unusually high number of connections between two areas of the brain’s sensory cortex, making two senses inseparable. Courtesy Dr.J Simner http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/8248589.stm
Synaesthesia may be perceived in a variety of ways. One example really stood out to me-- in the case of space and time. For those who are stimulated in this way, a visual experience can be reached when thinking about time. The following graphic is courtesy of BBC.com, used to illustrate a possible shape that a space/time synaesthete sees in a year.
The shape of each time-space synaesthete's year is different
(photo courtesy of the BBC http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/8248589.stm)
This is but one example; there are many possible other permutations of colors and shapes and sizes for each synaesthete with this sort of perceptional ability. Some synaesthetes may be able to taste words, others experience what is called “ordinal-linguistic personification” wherein numbers or letters act as the ‘trigger’ (NOT colors) the impression of gender or a personality. Dr. Simner, a University of Edinburgh psychologist who studies synaesthesia uses the following example to illustrate this, ”you don’t know that number seven is green, but you know that it’s a maniacal husband who comes home from work and shouts at his wife.”
Per the article, there are 54 or more different variants of synaesthesia—“most people associate texture and shape with shades of colour. And most people have an intrinsic sense of the shade of different pitches of sound.”2 So there you go, Jill! And check out this super-cool blog written by British PhD Stephen Westland. (He’s also full prof at UK University).
Dr. Westland has been working in all things color for a quarter century including color chemistry, color physics, color engineering, color neuroscience, color psychology, and color design. He asserts that “although Newton observed 7 colours when he separated white light with his glass prism, most scientists today agree that it is really only possible to discern 6 colours and that indigo cannot be distinguished from violet in the visible spectrum.” So one wonders, how many colors do synaesthetes see that perceive the number/color variation? Reader, if this is where you are stimulated, let us know how many you see!
(photo courtesy of Dr. Westland http://colourware.wordpress.com/2009/06/29/colour-101/)
It was mentioned to me in earnest that some synaesthetes seem to be prone to some sort of savantism, and/or autism. To that Hecate cautions the ignorant to do their homework, synaesthesia is not a disorder—not a problem that needs some fixing. AND who wouldn’t want to boast of impressive powers of recall? Call me a savant if I’m blessed with such beautiful powers of the mind! According to the (albeit superficial) research that has been done by this blogger, it seems to be perfectly natural to experience these sensations, and Hecate for one finds it marvelous if you are a synaesthete of any kind! You may test yourself to see which sort of synaesthete you are, below is the link to the eyesight test:
And below you’ll see the link to the auditory test. For this one you may want earphones-- especially if you are testing this while at work:
Hecate signing off before early light from the Underworld-buona sera!
Restaurant you must visit before you go to any other restaurant Styx may have said you must visit: Cafe Ena
We tried to eat here once before, but were a tad late for their 9pm last call for food (one of the restaurant's only drawbacks). No turning us away this time- no sir. We got a nice little table outside, and were greeted with some of the best fresh baked bread and que ridiculo homemade butter -- needless to say we cleaned out two bread baskets in short order. The sangria was delicious, as one would expect from a Latin cuisine hotspot. Our salad was so fresh, and light, with a citrus dressing - yeah, we wiped that one out in no time too. And the entree- cardamom encrusted salmon atop a melange of asparagus, artichokes, red peppers, and topped with a mango chutney - fantastico!
And then, dessert. For us, dessert is like a sacred ritual. No, more like a responsibility. Or a duty. Yes, it is our civic duty to consume exorbitant amounts of sugar, chocolate, and calories - lest we fail you all as fine food-loving gastronomes. So our unanimous choice was in favor of the churros. Oh holy mother of the most high. (I think I drooled just thinking about them!) Think long mini-doughnuts (of the finest variety) with some warmed chocolate ganache for dipping, and a dollop of cinnamon ice cream - just for perfection's sake.
Cafe Ena - yeah baby.
Styx and Hecate, enjoying Cafe Ena's Pescado entree y una sangria deliciosa.
Ah, yes, and Styx did wear THOSE boots:
Lob. Burning lob.
Next on the hit list - Evolution Experience. I'll just put it to you plain: if you want the most amazingly awesome, talented, gorgeous, celebrated and totally rad hair god of the world, then go to Matt. He's the best. Period. Ma Dukes, Hecate and I have been seeing Matt for over a decade, and his pure genius with the shears (and the dye bottle) never ceases to amaze. Shucks, even Junior's saddling up in Matt's chair now.Knowing how painfully cool Matt and co-owner Mike are, we expected nothing short of a dope party. And it was. The remodel of their salon is spectacular, of course they drew a crowd of total beautes, the alcohol overfloweth, and the jams were on point. Amber- you beautiful being, it was great seeing you again. Suffice to say, we left the party about 10 lbs lighter from all the sweaty-a** rump shakin'. Thank you Matt and Mike - you rock our Underworld.
The Revolution of Evolution Salon