After hearing the debate about the colour of a simple dress I started to think about how eyes can play tricks on people. In fact, one of my favourite songs ("Into The Now" by City To City) contains the lyrics "Seeing through these eyes is like a good movie - you've gotta watch so you don't miss a thing". Read on for my take on the debate from a slightly different angle.
There are times when I really wish I could rent my eyes out to people. Even better would be if I could insert a camera into each of my eyeballs and connect them - via WIFI - to a computer screen near you. You could witness the walking trees morphing into humans as we approach them at dusk - or the body-less clothes floating towards us in bright sunlight. Or even (and this particular favourite of mine happened last week) the mouthless and noseless papier mache mask which was on top of a nice looking outfit. As the rather spooky apparition came closer to me it turned into a Muslim lady who was wearing a flesh coloured (or "nude") scarf over her mouth and nose.
All the above happened when I was wearing my glasses. Without my glasses on the world becomes an altogether fluffier place. Humans and objects lose their definite shapes - small things become invisible but large things grow (let's just say that whilst I am not usually scared of someone who is just over 6ft tall when I have got my glasses on - without my glasses they gain at least 4" in height, and that is when they are standing reasonably close to me).
I have tried before on here to explain bits and pieces about my "Human Recognition Software" and how I file people in my head according to a completely different system to most people - which affects how I describe them.
As I was thinking about typing this blogpost I remembered some tricks I use to identify people as well as some other things you may find interesting;
For example - what have a navy blue tank top, a brown leather jacket, a stripe of black paint over eyes (could even be a blindfold, but closer inspection reveals it to be a pair of sunglasses), a helmet like the ones worn by actors playing Roman Centurians (colour can change from steel, through gunmetal grey, to black), and a Teacosy Hat (a hat which looks like a teacosy complete with bobble or pompom), got in common???
They have all been markers to identify people who are known to me - usually because they are the most obvious thing about them.
The navy blue tank top and the brown leather jacket have been used to identify the same person 20 years apart. The person in question was wearing the tank top when I first met him (and he wore it more often than not in the first year I knew him).
The very strange looking sunglasses were worn by a bus driver I used to know - to the point where I thought they were either welded to his face or they were just a thick line of black paint.
The teacosy hat is very handy when it comes to identifying a very good friend of mine.
Now - all the above can be removed from the human in question without causing too much pain and/or distress. They are also best viewed with my glasses on.
The Centurian's helmet is a totally different story. (You would have to remove the nose guard to get the proper idea.) As far as I can tell - this would cause a large amount of distress to the person concerned if someone were to attempt to remove it without their permission. Apart from that - it is the only identifying feature which looks the same with or without my glasses on my nose. Did I say attempts at removing it would cause distress to the person wearing it??? This might have something to do with the fact it is someone's hairstyle (which they have had all through the 10 years or more that I have known them).
I have to admit that my biggest bugbear is not having to work around angles (my brain just goes on strike when faced with those) - it is working out distance. This can literally be painful.
Here is something for you to try;
Stand just over arm's length away from a door and close your eyes. Now attempt to find the door handle without moving your feet and only using one hand. Not easy - is it?
Now imagine that your view of the door is a large fluffy looking vaguely oblong shape which is not really disguishable from the surrounding wall (doorframes do not exist according to your eyes). There may or may not be a small grey blob where you would expect to find a doorhandle. Your mission is to use that small grey blob to help you get on the other side of the oblong without screaming in pain (this means you have hit the door hard with your hand). What makes it even more tricky is the fact that - the further your hand is away from your body the more it looks like it is merging with the fluffy oblong shape which not only appears bigger than it really is but simultaneously appears closer to you and further away from you depending on how you move your hand and arm.
The above exactly describes opening my bedroom door when I cannot be bothered to put my glasses on first.
I also use my feet to guide me when I am walking around - finding edges, etc, which are not always immediately visible.
So - maybe those of you who have been engrossed in the debate about the colour of a dress should count yourselves lucky that you can make a joke of it and get on with your day? Some of us have got decisions to make regarding what our eyes "see" which can be very dangerous for us.
I will close with my favourite scene from an episode of QI where Phil Jupitus is exasperated because he has been told the sunset in the picture he was looking at was a mirage;
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