The Real Rose – a 100 word story
I was standing at the edge of known space. The grid lines were extremely beautiful. That was it. I was going to jump right into reality. I was going to smell a real rose. I made it, half expecting to disappear in a cloud of pixels. The clockwork device I built converted me into a real person and ejected me into the real world. I could feel the real breeze on my face. I found a flower shop. I picked a single rose and smelled it, breathing it in deeply. I wrinkled my nose in disgust. That rose was stinky.
Hi there and thanks for stopping by. I’m Guy, and you’re listening to my surreal sketchbook of reality.
Episode 15, A Cloud of Pixels
While our everyday industrialized world tends to be made out of different shades of gray, it’s not the end all be all of color. This episode Is a semi-philosophical look at color. I’m not a professional philosopher by any means and my approach can be quite absurd, illogical and not at all that serious, so – you’ve been warned. Do not take this podcast too seriously. If you tend to take things too seriously, this might not be the podcast for you. Seriously. I mean it. Find another podcast to listen to.
You’re still here? Good. Let’s talk about color. When a light source goes through a prism, it breaks into different colors. The specific colors we get depend on the color of the light source and can be influenced by the composition of the air it goes through. Usually, when we talk about separating color through a prism, the specific color separation that comes from a white color source here on earth is the one we refer to. That is because we happen to live on earth and white color sources are the ones most common here. The colors you get from a white light source also happen to be the ones you get from a rainbow.
Raindrops can sometimes act as prisms, breaking up colors and creating a rainbow in the sky. A rainbow is actually composed of many colors, some of them invisible, but we tend to break it into seven colors, red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet. That particular choice of colors is actually not natural. It was created by Newton who chose that particular number of colors to coincide with the white notes in a musical octave. Beyond those colors are the ones we can’t see like ultraviolet and infrared. The color composition of a rainbow can be broken down quite differently, but we tend to see those particular colors since we are culturally trained to see them from an early age. We absorbed those as the actual colors of a rainbow from our environment for so long, that we just believe them to be the true colors of a rainbow. I see the color of a break coming up. I’ll be right back.
Fishing – a 100 word story
The packet of cherry-flavored blow pops was happily floating on the water. Little Linda bent over and tried to pick it up. Apparently, it was stuck. The kid pulled at it. The packet seemed to pull back at her. She pulled harder. The packet also pulled harder until it knocked Linda off her feet and started dragging her right into the water. Linda just wouldn’t let go. She really wanted those colorful yummy looking lollipops. Eventually, she was pulled right into the water where a shark with a fishing rod put her in a basket and walked away with her.
Welcome back. Color can be a cultural thing and the meaning we give to color can change by where you grew up. For example, red can represent life and sensuality in some places while representing danger and violence in others. Blue can represent peace and tranquillity but can also represent sadness and depression depending on where you are. Many times, the way we perceive a color depends on the meaning we absorbed for it while growing up.
Differences in the way we perceive color can also be embedded in the very language we speak. Take blue and light blue for example. If you are English speaking you would perceive both as blue, different tones of the same color. In Hebrew though, there are different words for them, “Kachol” for blue and “Tchelet” for light blue, so they might be perceived as distinct colors. There are many examples of that and different colors can be perceived as one color in some languages and two colors in some. In some places, for example, red and orange are the same color and have only one word for both of them.
Different people from the same culture can also perceive colors differently. That is because we don’t actually see colors. We see our brain’s interpretation of color. That is most obvious where the boundaries between colors are blurry, for example, the boundary between blue and violet. In effect, Your dark blue can be violet for someone else. It’s hard to tell where your orange ends and where someone’s red begins. Some people can’t distinguish opposite colors. Green and red would seem like the same color to them. This is just one form of color blindness. In more extreme cases, people can’t see color at all. They just see the world in different shades of gray. This is just another one of the problems we have for being separate beings with separate brains who interpret the world in a separate way, but it’s also just part of the magic of what makes us unique and human. This concludes episode 15 of this podcast. Close the door on your way out and don’t forget – I’m just a figment of your imagination.