Saturday, February 2, 2013

Eyes wide open

I spent years studying music. After a while my ears got very sensitive to even small differences in pitch. On the good side, I am a better musician because of it. I am more appreciative of people who play or sing truly well. But I am also very acutely aware of poor playing and singing. I hear bad singing on television and cringe. I go to church and hear bad music and lean forward with my head in my hands so no one will see my discomfort. I don't necessarily want to hear these things. Sometimes I wish I didn't hear them, especially when I don't have anything invested in the activity or can't change what's going on. In those instances, the knowledge is just wasted on me.

Sometimes hearing things no one else does even makes me a target of other people's distrust. One time I was involved in a performance using primitive instruments, each with a particular "pitch". The instruments were played as a group to form "melodies". Before the performance, the instruments must have gotten mixed up because when we started playing, parts of the melody were inverted. It nearly drove me crazy and as we walked off stage I immediately remarked to my colleagues on the issue. No one had noticed. They looked at my like I was loony. No one heard it. No one believed me. I don't know why, because they thought they heard something else? My word against what they thought they heard and they trusted their own senses more. A few days later we listened to the recording together. Everyone was watching me as someone pressed "play" -- either I was wrong or they were wrong and pretty soon we would know for certain. I was vindicated, but I wasn't happy about it. Not really. The didn't apologize. They looked at me like I was a witch.

It makes me trust people less too. Once I lost a competition to someone whom I thought was clearly playing out of tune. Because I believed that surely everyone else could hear how badly the intonation was, I thought there must be some other explanation for why his performance beat mine, something nefarious at work. I saw a conspiracy and cover up where there was none. It would be one thing if I could just convince myself that I  have idiosyncratic preferences that aren't shared by many people -- which is better, beer or wine? There's no certain answer in matters of opinion. But matters of pitch are objective. Either you are playing or singing the pitches that are being requested of you or you are not. A tuning machine would be able to make these fine distinctions and so can I, for all the good it does me.

As a child I saw and understood a lot of things that I know I was not supposed to. Even now I see things that I don't necessarily want to see. I see people's fear and their betrayal, how weak and unreliable their love is, how soft their convictions are. And especially when I was growing up I thought that a lot of the world must be corrupt. Because why didn't other people see these things and act accordingly? It seemed like a cover up. And when I mentioned it to people they didn't believe me. They thought that I was making things up, and in blatant bizarre ways. I learned to stop pointing these things out, but I did feel a bit like Alice in Wonderland.

By the way, does any one else hear the wrong notes in penultimate and ante-penultimate timpani pitches in the theme song for Fringe?


86 comments:

  1. mm that show is on my tivo haven't seen it yet
    (dunno how it got there problebe pressed a wrong button

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  2. Yeah people are so easy to read. Their emotion always gives them away which only makes them that much easier to manipulate

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    1. Can you only really manipulate person on their ego needs? If they have humility( a right sized version of themselves) wouldn't it be hard to manipulate them?

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    2. I guess when you're trying to win approval all the time, it's like walking around with a leash around your neck, some people will take advantage of the opportunity to lead you where they want.

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    3. I think you would be really surprised how easy it is to manipulate people with only that. That's one of the main ways to do it with people you don't know well

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    4. yes you can totally manipulate by another's ego drive.

      Like, totally man. You watch their face, that's all.

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    5. tewtally mahn

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    6. needs wants and emotions are all tools for manipulation
      try manipulatining and aspie or sociopath they don't have those
      sometimes ego works on sociopath but not always
      b4 i was 10 i knew my father would lol like a little gire wile trigering ppl's emations but i never knew what was going on now that i do it to it all makes sens
      and it's a hell of a lot of fun
      now dance monkey
      DANCE

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  3. Having a very good ear is a somewhat rare thing. But I think even people who have average ears, well above tone deaf, have brains like we all do that will kind of autocorrect the note to sound relatively in tune, because the brain and senses look for order. Kind of like how the eyes will fill in missing information with images or words that are missing vowels or letters. It is only the relatively sensitive that will feel off pitches in a pronounced way. Perhaps personality plays a role too in how one reacts to flat/sharp notes or things that stand out in a way that does not appear to stand out for others.

    Your intonation may have been techinally superior to this other fellows, but perhaps other elements of his playing were superior to yours, like note choice, interpretation, technical fluidity etc. His lack of being in tune was not strong enough to matter to the average hearer, and his other qualities perhaps appeared to be superior to yours, just guessing.

    That these people did not acknowledge your being right in the case of the inverted melodies when it was played back is bad on them. On surface it looks like ego at work at they were just aholes but perhaps there is more to it.. maybe they did not want to give you credit because they saw other things with you that they did not like and it was a sort of payback.

    Fringe makes me cringe on a whole, tried watching it but can't do it. I think I hear what you are saying, it sounds dissonant almost. Maybe there were going for that?

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    1. Another thing is, being very in tune all the time can impart a sort of sterile quality to music, especially if other elements are lacking. Slightly off pitches can give an extra emotional quality to music. And unless you have grown up listening to quality classical musicians or orchestra music, you have been exposed to a lot of out of tune music. Even today in this day and age of autotune, out of tuneness is rampant, just listen to Alicia Keys

      Interesting that we can more easily detect and feel flat notes stronger than sharp notes.

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    2. Nice assessment.

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    3. i heard the timpani notes being flat. Reminded me of flat affect. I have played percussion and it sounds like the person playing was hitting too much in center of the drum.

      My ear is extreemely sensitive, to the point I will ask other instruments to please tune up even though they have, and I get angry because I cannot cannot sing next to someone who is off pitch. I am told I blend well vocally because I match the other people's tone.

      But I cannot stand it when i cannot hear enough to be confident in my execution.

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    4. Yes it is the effect they were going for but what affect was that? The "dissonance" you refer to strikes a feeling in main stream western culture of suspense and other emotions tied to anxiety. Why? And if you are capable of feeling the same emotion tied to a sound that nearly every other person in the world would feel, what does this say about you? Your place amongst the masses?

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    5. the garbage truck that crawls up my street early in the morning, louder and louder, strikes a feeling of suspense and anxiety.

      seriously :-)

      actually there is one sound that puts me into an almost panic when i hear it. i'm not sure how to describe it. it's a mechanical sound. it's more vibration than sound, a low rumbling that you feel more than hear.

      it could be he sound of a very large engine idling in the distance, or a car next to me with its windows shut but music very loud. when it happens, the need to get away from it is overwhelming. maybe it's a certain frequency that does it?

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    6. I believe that our brains tend to auto-tune off-key music. I like to sing when i am bored, and when i sing it sounds like a passable performance to me but people will often offer money or candy for me to stop :)

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  4. So we have it confirmed, M.E. is female.

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    1. If you paid attention, you would know that he isn't a woman

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  5. I felt exactly the same way about the Alice in Wonderland. That is why I thought I was a sociopath. I could see to the core of things and no one else seemed to. I was told I was neurotic and crazy. I was scared as hell and shut it off.
    It sounds like M.E was born with perfect pitch.

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  6. Good morning everyone! <3

    @Monica

    I don't think that ME was born with perfect pitch.
    Because, then he wouldn't have noticed an improvement through studying music. Also it wouldn't have cost him any effort to study it.

    Oh, or was your last line an intentional example for what you said right before? Honest question, no offense.

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  7. people are horrible to monica.... it's disgusting

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    1. Dude, i like monica and i see no reason to offend her.
      Also, someone whos intent it is, to offend people, doesn't use phrases/formulations like "I don't think", "Honest question" or "no offense". Pretty basic stuff.

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  8. What do you mean, MyMind? I was just talking about someone I knew with perfect pitch and wondering if she experienced that.

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  9. What do you mean Monica? Were we talking about someone you knew? I think i missed that. oO

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    1. That is OK, MyMind. To the sweet Anon who said people treat me terribly. The heaviest thing anyone will ever carry is one's own ego. Anything that reduces one's ego is a blessing. When I first came on here, I felt I had to defend myself to people like UKan and Medusa( who is doing the Vegiopath thing and the other stupid things) Now, I walk away.

      The people who have everyone kissing their butts never learn these lessons which are crucial for a peaceful life. Look at someone like Princess Diana. She had all sorts of praise and exaltation and she never knew what to do with it. One has to tame one's ego. What better place that SW with people like UKan? You are not gonna find much worse than UKan "on the outside"

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    2. Cut the crap. Your stories are not true, and you're doing it for the attention.

      The people who have everyone kissing their butts never learn these lessons which are crucial for a peaceful life. Look at someone like Princess Diana.

      But when people are shoving you reality inside your ass, you're not accepting it. You only want people feeding your delusions.

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    3. I don't really know UKan, he seems kinda intelligent but at the same time pretty dumb. Maybe i just confuse the fact that he's more experienced than me with intelligence.

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    4. "I see people's fear and their betrayal, how weak and unreliable their love is, how soft their convictions are. And especially when I was growing up I thought that a lot of the world must be corrupt. Because why didn't other people see these things and act accordingly? It seemed like a cover up."


      How does one act accordingly to these things?

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    5. wrong thread, sorry

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    6. Nope. It's the friendly people you have to be careful of.

      Perhaps UKan sees something in you that reminds him of some unpleasant experience from some time ago.

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    7. 4:44 Bullshit! Ukan is repulsed by monica.

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    8. @4:44

      Yeah, but you'll never know what exactly is up in someone elses mind, so you have two options: Avoid any human interaction or don't get bothered by it.

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    9. 4:56 Everyone know that ^ ^ ^. I can't believe you wrote that!

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    10. @5:08

      I see what you did there.

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  10. I notice a lot of things at once -- if I hear a voice, I must hear the words, too. Also, it's easy for me to see relationships between people and their feelings about them. I can tell who is annoyed by certain people and use that to my advantage.
    When I was a child people tried to keep their secrets from me but it seemed like I learned them almost immediately simply by paying attention and listening -- I was shocked that my sister (younger than me by 2 yrs) could not figure them out, so in time I stopped telling her about them.

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  11. It isn't a matter of being worthy. You don't actually earn love.

    Okay, so you do feel love and are capable of giving and receiving it. That's good. But it sounds like you don't have the opportunity to do so often and you would like to? If that's what you want, you can make it a goal to have more caring relationships. It sounds like that would make you happy. Go for it.

    A lot of people, myself included, don't 'feel' love everyday. That isn't unique to people with personality disorders, a lot of normal people don't either.

    It's better to think of love as work you do, than as a feeling you get. It sounds like you feel fake, but you're doing it right. It's what you have to do to keep relationships going. Don't worry too much about not feeling it.

    QM

    Thank you QM. It does feel like work I do.I maintain these relationships with actions and words. I am happy when someone is happy with me.

    Right now I am feeling confused about how to feel about someone. I am doing a lot of work in my head to get myself to separate my ego and i just do not know how i feel, other than paranoid/paranoid for good reason.

    THank you monica, for your response as well.

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    1. I feel like people must earn my love. I thought that is normal for people who have been hurt. you know how idiots will say " dont bring your past relationships into ours..." please, that is very fucking lame. ==it is a T O N of work if i have been hurt not to do this,


      I want to stalk someone, or spy, or set them up. Fantasy, but may come true. I do not trust.

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    2. Anon 8:05

      Everyone struggles with love: it's nature and how to fit it into one's life. You are doing great and your struggle really is very beautiful.

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    3. Keep talking. Keep writing. I am here and others are, too!

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    4. I wrote a lot to try to address each topic you touched, but the first half is more relevant to you than the second. You don't sound like you have trouble with empathy, so hopefully not feeling love won't be an issue for you. I do hope you find more caring relationships, though.

      Dealing with ego can be tricky, but if you think you have good reason to fear, please go with your gut on that. QM

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    5. Yes, I have been learning about myself, good and bad. I do have empathy. I think people are born with certain tendencies, good and bad. I am coming to believe I can rely on my feelings. This is a very big thing for me, as I was attacked on these. Maybe, this part of me was the part that could keep me independent, so it got attacked the most.
      You help me when you share yourself with me( us).

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    6. thank you both.

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  12. To My Two Buddies--- Zoe and Ellicit


    I was standing in my summer home, looking out at the beach. Time froze because I was making a pivotal decision. This decision would, both, ruin my life and save it. That is why time froze and I still remember it, now. I became like a comrade in Russia. No, sir. Yes, sir. But some of them regained their internal apparatus, I assume. I became a complete comrade. I didn't.

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    1. But some of them regained their internal apparatus, I assume. I became a complete comrade. I didn't.

      &I dont c the connection between this thought and the rest.Is that you being purposely mysterious?

      I have to go now.

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    2. @Anon 8:14

      I gave up my inner self to become a comrade( an unthinking follower)but I did it to save my life.

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    3. You might find being frank and direct a refreshing change of pace.

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    4. anon, i think sofa meant "retained" not "regained".

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    5. if for a long time those around you tell you that red is yellow and green is blue, eventually you would see colours the way you're taught not the way they are.

      but then if you were to learn that what they told you wasn't true, that you had been misled, you would still find yourself not being able to rely on your eyes. the eyes would tell you only what you had been taught, not what's really there, what colour a thing really is. to see things as they really are you'd have to go out into the world and discover it all over again for yourself.

      i think it's the same with feelings. i don't think you can learn to feel in a new way from just memories of feeling things the old way.

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    6. MAN You is one brilliant gal, Zoe.

      Yes, I meant retained. I did not see the typo until you mentioned it.

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    7. it works with "regained" too, but doesn't fit as neatly. with "regained" it's about being free but continuing to be a prisoner on the inside. was it a slip, sofa?

      nice analogy

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  13. You can be healthy, if you can face the truth. Your body has to face it, though. Your mind facing it is, basically, worthless. I wish that were not so, like I wish many things were not so, chief among them what selfish pieces of shit we are. I would like to take my pink paintbrush and brush over everything. I would make myself into the kind of twirling fairy angel that is on top of your jewelry box, when you were a child. When you opened the box to see your treasures, you heard fairy music. That slice of life had pink on it.

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    1. As time passed, windows and doors closed and, then, locked. Peepholes closed until there was a little slit like they have on doors, for mail. I lived in that slit. I came to accept it because worse could have happened and it could have closed, entirely.

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    2. I am a fattie. It doesn't show because I hide it under balloon dresses. I don't act like I eat like a bird or that fake shit, where I take a few polite bites, in public. I know I eat too much. To get my attention, people have to echo beyond my rolls. I echo back. Then, I started avoiding people because echoing is a fucking lot of work, but I am still disabled with this fat stuff.

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  14. I love this song. It is amazing. Thank you for it!

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  15. Replies
    1. sinds when do demons sing out of key?

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  16. always makes me lol if i see a neurotipical trying to seduce a girle
    makes me wander how the hell they ever get a gf
    a lot of luck i gues

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  17. "I make some people feel uncomfortable because they want to hide and I can see through it and they know"


    oh . yes

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  18. I'm ignorant of formal musical understanding, but I do notice some out-of-chord tendencies in the piece you shared, M.R. It's common in the soft-boiled sci fi shows so common nowadays. A basic tactic for putting the viewer at slight unease.

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  19. I wish I could see what you see.

    I'm sorry no one believed you. It sounds kind of awful.

    I think people figure that just because a child has a roof over their head everything's fine. No one cares what a kid is exposed to. Our system is jacked and people are fundamentally lazy and lack the courage of their convictions. Or they think money fixes everything. QM

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  20. I'm sorry that no one believed you. But, to actually to make someone believe in you it becomes very necessary that you understand that person too, I mean the way he thinks to be able to convince/influence him/her the right word is "communicate effectively". May be that's the reason average students do much better in life than the genius ones because they understand people's psychology.

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    1. i partly agree. average students are almost guaranteed to do okay in life but it's because they don't challenge what they're told. they follow along, without much understanding of anyone or anything, and society is set up to reward them for it.

      i've noticed sheep don't like it when another sheep in the flock veers off the path and beckons them to follow it. they will mock him for it to bring them back into line. if that doesn't work they will banish him, try to make him the object of ridicule. if he has any success at all, they will then try to compete with him, and resent him for their own lack of success.

      when he gets recognition from those they follow, he becomes one of the leaders and they suddenly forget that they once mocked him. sheep have no curiosity about how things work, including other sheep.

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    2. sheep need a well-trodden path to success. geniuses break their own trail.

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    3. geniuses break their own trail..........alone. lonely is not good so i don't consider them geniuses.

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    4. boring..........

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    5. why boring? alone and lonely?

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    6. No........projecting?

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    7. no

      alone doesn't mean lonely. you married the two, not me

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  21. you are right geniuses break their own trail. But, it depends whether a genius wants his success to be acknowledged or not, if he wants to acknowledged and be followed he will have to understand the society and or else he be the first and last of his kind to walk on the new path or else he would end up being the Van Gogh in the field of creativity.

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    1. No of course not, but I must say it depends whether you want to get recognized in your lifetime or you prefer recognition after your death. Because if you really want to be recognized you have to convince the world.

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    2. i would want to be recognized by peers.

      if you were to devote your life to a thing, you would understand it in a way the world couldn't. it could become wildly popular and even life changing, but that just means there was a way to apply it and turn it into product. how can the world truly recognize what it doesn't understand? at most it could stroke your ego.

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    3. anon4444, if you could choose between discovering the secret of existence but being unable to share it, and inventing some fantastic thing that brings you fame and fortune, possibly making society's wheels turn a little more smoothly (but likely not), which would you choose?

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    4. It was nice talking to you Zoe.

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  22. well of course the former one, because at the end of the day all it matters is what you think about yourself, not others(because at times we tend to get carried away by flattery in the name of appreciation, which is not a very healthy habit). But, in my opinion if you are an artist one would want recognition and acknowledgement, where as in the scientific/analytic field one can easily prove oneself. Believe me there are times when I feel the world should think I'm foolish, stupid and inefficient, so they don't understand what I'm truly capable of.

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