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 My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)

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Knate
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PostSubject: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Wed Apr 06, 2011 4:23 am

I posted this as a note in Facebook. So far, I've gotten a good reception. Read it, its interesting.

My†Freak Quality (Synesthesia)

†I always thought what I did was normal, and never once gave a thought that it might be weird to you. This isn't a school report or anything, but more of a way to release it from my own head.
†I have never once mentioned or spoken publicly other than a few spare and minor details about this just recently. Iíve noticed it for as long as I can possibly remember, and just always figured it was normal. About a week ago, I noticed it starting to get really bad and decided to find answers. I discovered that I am experiencing forms of Synesthesia.

Synesthesia from the ancient Greek σύν (syn), "together," and αἴσθησις (aisthēsis), "sensation," is a neurologically-based condition in which stimulation of one sensory or cognitive pathway leads to automatic, involuntary experiences in a second sensory or cognitive pathway.

†My parents have always been impressed and bragged about my sense of direction with other people. When I was 8 years old, if I wanted too, I could have driven to almost any motocross track within Florida. It wasnít out of repetition, but rather than the emotion I felt from it. There are certain triggers in my brain that fire when I would hit a certain spot in the road, a time of day or even a specific smell or vibe that would let me know I was on the way to a certain place. Putting all those together, I just connect the dots.
†††††††††††
†In case you didnít understand any of that, or just think Iím flat out crazy, hereís more examples that will let you judge even farther.
All my life Iíve always associated numbers, letters, words and occurrences with a certain color. For example, this is my color wheel for the numbers 1 Ė 10

1.White. 2. Blue. 3. Green. 4. Brown. 5. Yellow/Orange. 6. Red/Brown. 7. Orange/Yellow. 8. Dark green. 9. Orange. 10. Red.


Now, what many of you think is that since this is written down, I will automatically see this in the colors I had just listed. This is wrong. They are in a black font, and thatís how I see them. However, when I think about them, or hear the number out loud, I associate it with their color and a certain type of emotion. If that is too much for you, every single letter of the alphabet has its own color, along with individual words and even full sentences at times. People even have their own color and emotion attached to them, even if I have never met them, met them once or known them my whole life. No matter what, it will never change. Ask me what I label you as. It might be fun.
††††
When I am given a phone number, I associate colors with each individual number, group of numbers, and whole number. My full phone number happens to be a dark red. The area code is green. The first 3 digits are grey and the last 4 digits are red. When I visualize the number as a whole, I see and feel as though it is a soft dark red.
†††††††††††
†Also, being the person of music and a self described multi-instrumentalist, I also have a form of sound Synesthesia. When I am playing guitar, or a certain chord, I see a color in mind. Typically, the name of the chord corresponds with the color and emotion I see. In the case of the G chord, I associate a specific shade of blue/green when hearing it. When hearing a person sing or even talk, I visualize a line in my head that is being drawn like a hand holding a pen on a never ending moving sheet of paper. Itís similar to that of a read out from a heart monitor or a seismology graph. When I hear drums, I visualize, basically, several different bouncy balls bouncing at their own individual places on a pad that corresponds with what sound they are making. (The sound of the snare drum is white, if you were wondering).

I can tell what time of the year it is just by the energy, vibe and smell I get. A certain thickness in the air, smell and vibe that appeals to all senses let me know that itís October. October happens to be the month I was born in, and this feeling lasts from the first few days of October and last the first few days of November. To put such a deep emotion into writing is nearly impossible, so I wonít even try anymore. Although the example I used for this specific time of the year is important to me, the same thing happens for all the other months and times of the year. Yes, the months have their own color. October is a faded black, but definitely not grey.
†††††††††††
Certain points of where Iím at also trigger a certain memory of mine. For instance, every single time I go around a specific curve on a road that is not to far from my house, a memory is triggered. Not for any particular reason, just a random memory that I havenít been able to get rid of. The memory is of me driving my momís car at dusk, going to band practice. The song ďGimme Three StepsĒ by Lynyrd Skynyrd is playing. It was 2 weeks before my birthday and the temperature was in the mid to high seventies. However, when I go around the same curve in the opposite direction, nothing triggers my memory and I go about my business without even realizing it.
†††††††††††
The reason what made me start basic research into this subject, and what subsequently made me figure out that this isnít normal is the months. Iíve lately been feeling out of place as itís April. All my senses have been telling me that it is October, and that is when I realized that my association with colors to letters and numbers could all be connected. Even after re-reading the previous two sentences about getting it confused, it reminds me of me walking into my bedroom, with the windows open, warm breeze and orange sheets on my bed. 5 years from now, if I re-read this, that same exactly memory would trigger.
†My entire life, I thought it was perfectly normal. However, when asking the 2 or 3 people Iíve talked about it recently, I found out that it wasnít. Now, I am just a weird freak that is a poster child for the effects of acid they teach school children. However, Iíve come to embrace it and realize that since itís not harming me in anyway, it has only been used to my advantage. Some have even mentioned jealousy or thought it was just really cool all together.
†††††††††††
Iím really curious as to what you think, even if it isnít very polite. Donít be shy. I am so curious is because Iíve always thought that EVERYONE was going through the same thing. If you have any question about it or have experienced the same type of things, please feel free to ask.
†http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Synesthesia


Last edited by Knate on Thu Apr 07, 2011 12:02 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Wed Apr 06, 2011 9:21 pm

Is this actually you, or a post you found somewhere and reposted?

Synesthesia is extremely interesting. I've always been fascinated by it, and wished I could experience it in some form.
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Wed Apr 06, 2011 9:29 pm

This is me. I wrote it last night.
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Wed Apr 06, 2011 9:31 pm

That's really interesting.

What colour am I?
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Wed Apr 06, 2011 9:55 pm

When I think about the name Raptorsaurus, its Orange. Racoon is Blue
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Wed Apr 06, 2011 10:15 pm

That's really intriguing What colour am I?
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Wed Apr 06, 2011 10:31 pm

In literature, poets/writers like to blend the senses together and try to create synesthesia. Usually they do this by mixing their descriptions of taste and sight, or sound and sight. Have you experienced anything other than just sound/sight?
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Wed Apr 06, 2011 10:54 pm

I didn't go too in depth in the Facebook note that I posted here. I didn't want people to think of me as more of a freak.

I taste and smell months. Or times of the year. Mainly from breathing the air, no matter where I am. It can even be in a car or airplane. I also smell and taste sounds. Kind of like smoke, but not nearly as potent. Not individually unless its just one person or thing. Like a band as a whole. It's kind of how other peoples houses smell funny. Except its for everything, and taste is sometimes involved.

Oldgospelchoir, you are black with yellow. Which is weird, because I thought I was the only black one.

This whole thing is still shocking to me, being that I just discovered it last night and that it wasn't normal. I found out the definition about a week ago, that's when it first hit me. But I wanted to disregard it. That lasted a whole week haha.

I still feel awkward talking about. Like I'm doing something wrong it someone is just going to automatically assume I'm weird, crazy or just want attention. I have no reason to lie or make anything up. I REALLY want to find a friend that has it so I can discuss it with, pursue research farther and maybe conduct experiments.
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Wed Apr 06, 2011 11:13 pm

Dude, it's the coolest thing. You get to sense the world in ways we normally can't.

I have colour recognition deficiency. I don't see the world in black and white or anything, I see all the colors, but my mind has a hard time labeling the colors. You can point to a color and ask what it is, and I really won't know, my mind will want to say four colours at once because it can't decide. I may arrange colors in a painting or something together, and people will say "those don't work well together." However, to me they look just fine and I can't understand the harmony of mixing certain colours mainly because I can't tell that one is actually red instead of green. They look completely the same.

It's not synesthesia or anything exciting, but it's interesting to know that I see things differently than a lot of people.

If I were you, I wouldn't worry so much about how different you are and how rare it is. Instead, celebrate it.
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Wed Apr 06, 2011 11:18 pm

Yeah man, I know a couple people like that. They call it color blind for short though? I'm glad I know the real term. I'm pretty sure you're talking about the same thing. How do you deal with traffic lights? Do you go by what light is on the top or bottom? What about when you wear sunglasses?

Meaning you can't tell what number is being displayed right?

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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Wed Apr 06, 2011 11:23 pm

Well, the school system and memorization has taught me a lot. I just sort of recognize colors in certain situations based on what I was taught or how other kids answered it. When they pointed to the green light and all the kids said green, in my head I would always think "I'm pretty sure that's blue... but whatever, 99% of the class said green so it must be right."

People call it color blind, but a lot of people confuse color blindness with complete black and white. That's why I avoid using it. One of my best friends just realized a few months ago that I actually can see colors and that I don't see the world in black and white. Ahah.

But, back to you.

How's motocross then? Describe THAT to me, that's gotta be pretty fucking cool and colorful.
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Wed Apr 06, 2011 11:32 pm

Hang on, ill edit this in a minute when I can get on a laptop. MX is where it predominately stands out. What I'm about tell you absolutely fucking blew my dads mind.
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Wed Apr 06, 2011 11:36 pm

Yeah, I can't see a number in that.

I fail those tests like crazy. I can only get the extremely obvious ones right.

What's the answer, by the way?
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Wed Apr 06, 2011 11:48 pm

57

Motocross is probably the most predominate in everything involving the Synesthesia. The races I do are 2 hours long, and your mind tends to wander. Whether it's a song lyric or even a damn nursery rhyme that gets stuck in my head. If it's a new track, I go out for practice and whatever i'm thinking about during that time sticks in my head until the next lap. It doesn't matter what it is, or if it's the same track a year later. I won't think about it until I hit that particular spot. It's like I run over a button or something.

Different shapes in the trees, roots, ruts, or the curve in a jump can trigger a specific memory, or what I was just thinking of at the time I first saw it. If I say, take an inside line around a corner, and i'm thinking about the number "4" for some reason, the rest of the day or weekend, that will pop in my head. However, if it's so specific that I took the inside line, if i went around the outside line, I wouldn't even think about it, unless I was trying too.

It helps TREMENDOUSLY with memorization or line choices. Even if it's a stupid nursery rhyme, in my head, I remember that "the humpty dumpty" line worked best the very first time. And to hit that jump in 2nd gear because it was "blue".

Green is my favorite color. Remember what bike i'm on? That's no coincidence either. The number 3 I also perceive is green. My number is 333. It was 3 when I first started. Then it because 33. Now it's 333

The smell of high test race gas reminds me of lobster. 2 stroke in general reminds me of a time that I went riding when I was 7 in the forrest when deer ran out in front of me for the 4 time. Typical 4 strokes smell like metal to me.

It can be pitch black, and I could tell what track I was at by just the vibe and energy alone. The smell of it and the texture of the dirt just by walking is a dead giveaway.


Last edited by Knate on Thu Apr 07, 2011 12:03 am; edited 2 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Wed Apr 06, 2011 11:53 pm

Wow.
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Thu Apr 07, 2011 12:02 am

For some reason my color wheel didn't copy over to my original post. This is how I perceive numbers 1 - 10. I also added a bit more to the MX thing incase you missed. it.

1.White. 2. Blue. 3. Green. 4. Brown. 5. Yellow/Orange. 6. Red/Brown. 7. Orange/Yellow. 8. Dark green. 9. Orange. 10. Red.
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Thu Apr 07, 2011 12:15 am

My mind has been completely blown. Motocross sounds so much more fun through your eyes... I wish I could experience it that way. For me it's just focusing on the dirt, people in front, or what's coming up. But you've got colors associated with it all too. That's absolutely incredible. It sounds like such a magical experience.
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Thu Apr 07, 2011 12:21 am

Tabletops that are made out of grey/black dirt or sand remind me of the feeling and what I saw after I broke/dislocated my shoulder when I tried to pick my arm up. Not rad.
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Thu Apr 07, 2011 12:37 am

That's really interesting. Everyone thinks and perceives things differently. It doesn't make you strange. You just think differently.

My mind wanders too much to the point where I could never listen to any form of literature on tape or cd because I have to see it to understand it. If I listen to it, I'll drift away and no clue what's going on.

What colour am I if you don't mind me asking?
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Thu Apr 07, 2011 12:40 am

Yeah, it's cool how numbers are colours. I don't have something that really relates to what you are experiencing. There are certain things that no matter what, just stand out, like visiting a place and associating it with a certain memory, whether related or not. I don't do it very often, but sometimes places associate with random things. That may be normal though...
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Thu Apr 07, 2011 12:57 am

Knate wrote:

Oldgospelchoir, you are black with yellow. Which is weird, because I thought I was the only black one.

we can be the only black ones I love you
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Thu Apr 07, 2011 1:04 am

I don't mind you asking at all. I don't have to think about it haha. You're grey that fades into a light pink.

I don't know why, but only people are multiple colors. A few of them are a solid color. Some fake, some are striped, and some are even kind of polka dots. It's not just a single block though, I see it in layers.

My friend, she happens to be green with white dots, kind of like polka dots. I see her as a Green that fades into a white. But on top of that, I see it as a 3 dimensional. The dots are in contrast to the background color, but are raised above it.

the people that fade into it. I don't see it as a block either. I see one color, usually a main color, in Jesse's case, grey. It slowly fades into a light pink, where grey isnt curently present.

I basically see auras around people. More than see them, I feel them. I can feel what kind of energy that person has at the current time and usually tell how they are feeling that day, if something is wrong/good. Kinda hard to do over the internet though.

After releasing this publicly, my friends and people that know me are not going to leave me alone about it. I kinda shot myself in the leg with this one. I hate attention being brought to myself.
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Thu Apr 07, 2011 1:26 am

I would go from dawn(grey) to light pink(dusk).

Energies! Yes I can relate to that. I get energies off of people all the time. I get a reading when I first meet them. Most of the time it's good and energizing. Other times I'll get a bad vibe that leaves me anxious. The energizing ones come from people who end up being super nice or awesome or inspiring or something really positive. The anxious vibes end up being from who are mean or too close minded.

Once I get to know people better I can sense if something is wrong with them, if they're off at all.

I sense it at shows a lot too. Partially why I prefer up front, so much energy flying around.
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Thu Apr 07, 2011 2:26 am

I'd say I can relate to that in a vague sense. I mean, I definitely associate some kind of feeling or emotion to things, and have a similar sense of different places and things having odd things that would remind me of each other or of certain senses. Also, each week has a different feeling to it, as with each year, and month. I can't really give a distinct colour to different things, but a certain feeling about things each of which has a kind of shade that I can't really describe. I can also definitely relate to that sense of direction, having some kind of intuition of way to go where, and such. I mean, even in places that I've never been to. I don't know, maybe what I'm talking about is completely normal, or just a lesser degree of what you're talking about.

Either way, I took a lot of interest in what you wrote, and I definitely agree with Raccoon about embracing the Synesthesia as opposed to feeling any kind of shame by it.

Also, what colour am I?
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PostSubject: Re: My Freak Quality (Synesthesia)   Thu Apr 07, 2011 9:31 am

I've heard of this before (had a discussion with a friend who sees colours similarly to how you've described), but on a personal perceptive level I literally have no idea what you're talking about. The closest I can think of is how I associate music with places and moods, but that's not really very comparable and it's more of a memory than a feeling. It's fascinating to hear you talk at length about this, so while I've nothing profound to add I'm definitely going to lurk up this thread!

When you're describing what colour people on the forum are, are you getting it just from their name or a more general feeling, such as how they talk/act and their persona on here?

And then I suppose I have to ask: what colour am I? :p
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