Thursday, 1 August 2013

Those pesky Colours

Actually, that sounds a bit racist doesn't it?  Unless your first thought was about washing machines that is, then you have my sympathy.

Well, that's completely not what I'm talking about, I mean actual colours, red, blue, green and yellow, things like that.  (I'm also not talking about Taupe, beige or camel - As, if you're a man, these aren't even real colours).

Something that I've always wondered, often at four o'clock in the morning, when it's raining and the cat's singing along to a particularly interesting bowel movement that she's having,  is - 'What if the colour that I think is red, is the colour that you think is blue?'

Do you know what I mean?

I don't mean 'I wonder if I'm colourblind?' or 'Is that a reddy-blue or a bluey-red?'  I mean, what if we see colours completely differently?

When you're a toddler, you learn the colour of things by example, your caring parents may have bought you one of those books with the cardboard pages that have pictures of cars and trucks and bunnies and chicks, opened it at a random page and gone 'Look at the Blue Car, lookit... Bluuuuueeeee caaaaaaaar... Can you say Bllluuuuuuuuuuuueeeeeeeeee Caaaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrrrr?' and after a while, your little sponge of a brain will make a quiet clicking noise and go 'The shape that the large, strange lady with the breath that smells of vodka is pointing at will now be categorised as "CAR" and its predominant colour is described as "BLUE" - File: save.'

From then on, everything that is that colour that can be thought about, touched or put in your mouth is described as Blue.  The same can be said of 'YELLOW CHICKS' or 'RED FISH', you get the idea...

But what if, something in between the camera that we call an eye, and the computer that we call a brain is wired differently?  What if the colour that your parents call 'Blue' is recognised in your head as the colour everyone else calls 'Red'?  How would you ever know?  Your friends would be sunbathing in the Summer under a bright Blue sky, and so would you, but unbeknownst to everyone (even yourself) you're seeing a Red sky... But you've been taught that that colour is actually called Blue.

You see, that's the problem with subjective things... only one person (The Subject themselves.) actually knows how they're experiencing something.

Same thing applies to smell, how do you know that the smell that everyone else smells when they say 'I love the smell of of freshly cut grass!' isn't actually the smell of an elephant with explosive diarrhoea - Not only would you not know, but you would also have been conditioned to believe that it was a nice smell! - Hot buttered toast could have the smell of a tramps gusset, fresh paint could smell like a burning duck (not a roasting duck, but like, what you'd smell if you went down to your local lake with a can of Lynx and a lighter.)

Your nearest and dearest could, to you, smell like a mixture of week old sweat, dried on urine and regurgitated spam vindaloo... Much like the chap who sat next to me on the bus to Nottingham yesterday,  But to you it smells like what we would all describe as expensive cologne and soap (which you've been taught to think are awful smells...)

I mean, I have no idea whether this actually does happen, and neither do any of the world's leading scientists, which by default makes me as least as intelligent as them... More so in fact, as I'll wager my left kidney and half an unused testicle that most of them haven't even thought about it.

Maybe colourblindness is actually your brain rebelling against your conditioning?

This demands further research... I'm going to buy a baby from eBay and give it different, random names for all the colours and smells, just to see if it'll work... Although, I guess that everyone in the world would have to be in on it...

You'd support me wouldn't you people of the Internet?

Internet people?


Is this thing on?

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