Almost a month ago I stumbled upon an article while collecting links for the fortean website. This article dealt with a piece of music designed to alleviate pain. Nurofen, a company that makes pain medications, led the study and tapped the artist Anatole to create a piece of music based upon their findings using different kinds of music which appeared to have a positive effect upon a listener's pain. I found the song, ripped it for myself, and kinda forgot about it.
During this time I had a gout attack, managed with black bean broth, which meant my walking was a bit wonky and caused more pain. In this case there's a point dead center which felt like a nail going straight up the center of my right heel. Since my job requires me to walk around, the pain was affecting my mood something fierce. Physical pain drives me to extreme mental states and I'm not talking about slaves, subs, masochists, or the like who may experience gnostic states while enduring their top's ministrations. The heel pain was going away, I was feeling better, but the mental state was lingering like a fart. When I knew I was alone and nobody was around I'd hiss "Kill yourself" at myself then immediately respond, "No."

On Tuesday night I realized that my right ankle was in a lot of pain. Immediately I dreaded this was going to linger, I'd be limping around county courthouses while humping books so clients get their deed searches. Worse, on Sunday I'd still be in pain but toughing it out with my planned Sunday excursion. Wound up smoking dope and hitting the sack around 8:30 p.m.
Wednesday morning I decided to take 4 ibuprofen an hour before I left then saw the mp3 for Anatole's All Of Us on my desktop. I played it once or twice and the pain seemed to subside. Also my left knee, which has been tricky of late, wasn't feeling as tricky as before. An hour before I bounced for work I popped 4 ibuprofen and started my commute playing All Of Us the entire drive. When I got out of my car in Toms River, I felt good. I felt hopeful the pain would end. Work went quickly and that was that. When I finally got home and uploaded my work, I took out my garbage and recycle with minimal discomfort.

I don't think the ibuprofen was the only reason for my pain relief. Took ibuprofen the night before and really didn't feel much better during the night nor when I woke. If this instrumental piece really does tickle one's dopamine, and I'm starting to believe that, then what else could be evoked by music? Physical reactions which are greater than stirring up emotions for better or worse. Now I reckon I'm going to seek out real binaural beats and see how they affect me. While binaural beats seem to work differently than this instrumental, their power derives from the audio frequencies rather than a collage of sounds, I am receptive to the idea of binaural beats inducing altered states of consciousness. Whether they'll be profound as taking 5 grams of psilocybe mushrooms or not remains to be seen.

more brain stuff

When I lived with Leah, my brain was always caught up in a mode where I wasn't necessarily thinking of Leah but anticipating what she may need. Back then Leah would say, "I'll tell you. You'll never have to wonder what's on my mind." Yet, from my perspective, how she applied that dictum came across as a blowtorch on my skin rather than a candle being lit in a dark room.
As a consequence, I began to forget stuff. Pop culture references, names of actors, dates of events, and other shit in that vein. Some of that stuff was dreadfully important, other stuff was just fun to have available on my mental shelf. Since I moved out, all the stuff I forgot has been coming back to me. I have energy to do things for myself. Things which nourish me rather than entertain me for a couple of moments. I'm no longer ashamed to enjoy myself.

It's as if my being in Leah's presence shuts off my brain.

In September I went to dinner with Leah's mother and towards the end of her meal she remarked with astonishment, "Why were you so quiet all those other times we all went out to dinner?" My response was "I dunno" but I reckon I know. The dynamic always felt to me as if it was time for Leah to shine and I had better enjoy playing second fiddle, or audience member, than participating in the give and take. Many times we went out, Leah and her mother would talk nonstop while her father and I would eat and stare at our plates. Bringing something up like that would not be kind. Plus her mother's rule is we don't talk about Leah when we go out to eat.

All this came to me because I did stop at the old place to see the cats after work on Wednesday. While Leah and I really didn't talk too much, I realized I was having a serious case of presque vu and to stay 'conscious' required a lot of effort on my part. I don't believe this is Leah's fault, since I was forcibly conditioned by my biological mother to only speak when spoken to and obey women in a not-fun way (that one's for the perverts who may read inkubo.org), but something about living with Leah 24/7 made me turn off my brain. My glib diagnosis is that I avoided conflict, which could have resulted in communication and growing closer, in order to keep Leah happy. Yet I wasn't making Leah happy in the way she needed to be happy.

I don't know what else to write in this vein because it's all feeling so complicated in my head. But hey, I wrote more than three hundred words, ĉu ne?

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