Thing a Week 8: Whitespace

Most people, when they close their eyes, see one of two things. They either see a pitch black, invoking mild feelings of blindness, or they see phantasms of their imagination, ranging in detail from phony floaters to rich and detailed worlds. If you ask most people to close their eyes and describe what they see, you’ll likely hear something vaguely similar to one of the two in their description.

Me, on the other hand? When I close my eyes I see white, just white: a boundless, infinitely bright plane of light in which I’m free to move around in, albeit with no concept of location. I can see, feel, and almost hear myself walking through this bright world, but nothing but my mental body I perceive in it ever moves. While it may not be the most interesting place for some, it’s the perfect getaway when I need to escape reality for a moment, be alone, and think.

I’m sure there are others out there that see something entirely different from the rest of us, as well. I mean, I don’t think just because I can live in this wonderfully blank world makes me any more special than anyone else. Surely others out there have their own white worlds, or red worlds, or blue worlds. We’re all human: we’re all equally likely to be born the way we are and equally capable to change the things we don’t like about it.

Personally, I like my white world.

Though, I do sometimes wonder what having an imagination must be like. Being able to conjure up fantasies at will, mentally coercing anyone at any time to do anything you want, and then having the power to make them disappear at the moment you get bored certainly sounds like a world thatshould be irresistible to those who are lucky enough to experience it. However, from what I’ve seen, savoring these dreams tend to be looked down upon in society in favor of things more concrete: work, a family, and even friends. Unfortunately so, I think.

I’m not entirely sure what the best thing to see when you close your eyes actually is though, nor whether there even is a best, but I wish there were a way for me to experience what else is out there. I can see from the outside what people are thinking, but sometimes I wish so hard I could see inside their heads. Even if I wanted to turn out the lights in my head I couldn’t, let alone do things like conjure up realistic imagery from nowhere.

When I was a kid I assumed the others were just smarter than me, capable of processing more in their mind or born with some innate advantage I for some reason missed out on. However, as I grew, I eventually learned that we truly are snowflakes of life: as much as we are born and grow alike, we are all uniquely different in our own ways.

I think it was that realization that originally led me down the path ending in the rickety, wooden seat I’m sitting in now. Any other path, any other choices, and perhaps I could possibly experience yet another mind’s configuration someday; however, it seems my days of exploration are over. That is, outside of my perfectly white world, at least.

That’ll do, though.

My eyes were assaulted by florescent lighting the moment I opened them, though I showed no outward signs of cringing. Beside me my lawyer sat, nervous, waiting for the jury to return. I could feel the weight of the world come flooding back almost instantly and I let the pressure close my eyelids again, resigning to a world in which I was in charge.

Since a child I’ve always been very good at a few things. The most important thing to daily life, I think, is a remarkable ability to—for lack of a better word—turn my body on autopilot. For the majority of most days I am nauseatingly predictable: I wake up, I eat breakfast, I go to work, and I work. Eventually I come home, I do some chores around the house, and then I go out hunting. Everything leading up to my nights on the town is stodgy, and I think the only reason I’ve been able to tolerate it for so long without snapping is my white world. As suddenly as I can close my eyes, there are no idiots, there are no physical limits, there are no schedules—there is nothing except my thoughts and myself, free to roam a blank slate of a world.

I’ve also always had a knack at picking up patterns, as well as picking up what’s often left between the lines. These two abilities have not only been my bread and butter through life, but they’ve helped immensely in my hunts and they’re primarily why I’m not going to be surprised by the guilty verdict. My “peers” might as well have spraypainted GUILTY on the wall on their way out with the way they wore a smile and strolled out with relaxed muscles. There were no furrowed brows, no physical hesitations, no unsure glances towards me or the plaintiff; no one will debate an easy decision to put me behind bars.

And finally, I’ve also been pretty incredible in what I call interpersonal mirroring: picking up habits and traits of those I talk to and fluidly working them into my demeanor, representing myself as someone like them in their eyes and working my way into their good book. I’ve been entirely polite throughout this ordeal, speaking only when spoken to and being as helpful as one should be in my situation, and I fully expect my helpful compliance to be reflected on the court’s official record and duly noted later when I finally appeal an apologetic and reformed man and finally get back to hunting.

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