Completely incoherent ramblings about shoes, food and being in love.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

First step to crazy-ville

I have a terrible confession to make. I don't think that I should be allowed to drive at night. Why? Because I hallucinate. Only at night though. And dusk. And dawn. Really, any time that it's not light out. I have recently discovered that I have this problem. Or more likely, I have recently admitted to this problem.

It started out innocently enough. A leaf fluttering across the road would look like a mouse. An oddly shaped tree would appear human like. Now it has taken on new forms. I see bizarre things that you would only see in the Serengeti or Alaska. Two nights ago while Colin was driving, I saw a giraffe. No seriously, I thought there was a giraffe in the road. In Delaware. Home to the insanly large population of exactly zero giraffes. Upon arriving at the point in the road where the giraffe was standing, I noticed that there was nothing. No wayward branches or discarded ladders. Just asphalt. This was a new twist in my situation. This time there was nothing there for me to mistake for something else.

About four years ago, I was in the car with a friend driving down a fairly major road. It's one of those highways with two lanes either direction separated by a grassy median. On either side of the road it is heavily wooded. Out of the woods on the left hand side a man came running from the trees holding a gun in his hand with his arm fully extended, pointing directly at our car. We were the only car around, and it was dark. Both of us ducked down in fear, and kept going. No eyes on the road. At the time, I was on the phone with Janet, and no I wasn't the one driving. The next day, I was flying down to visit her in New Orleans and I was securing airport pickups and whatnot. Janet is my proof in this story that I wasn't hallucinating. Only now, I am a little worried that maybe I was.

I unfortunately don't remember the way the events of the moment unfolded. Perhaps I yelled, "There is a man with a gun running at us!" which in turn caused the both of us to duck. Or perhaps she saw it too and we both ducked instinctively. Or maybe she is the one that saw the lone gunman, and she warned my unobservant ass that, hello? duck bitch or you might die! When I asked her about it, she had no recollection of it ever even happening which, makes me that much crazier.

My hallucinating may of may not be years in the making. There may of may not have been a random man trying to kill us. There certainly was no giraffe in the road. I am perhaps certifiably crazy. My recommendation to you? Always offer to drive at night if you are with me. Otherwise you may end up careening off of a cliff while I swerve to avoid the machete wielding chimpanzee in my peripheral.


Blogger goldmoon said...

I am also not a good night driver. I don't see giraffes, but I don't deal with car lights well.

I do think I have peripheral hallucinations though in the broad daylight. I always think there is something lurking to the right or left of me, then whip around to find nothing there. Maybe you and I are seeing what's REALLY there and other people are not?!?!

12:37 PM

Blogger janet said...

i may not be QUITE as crazy as you, but I really suck at driving at night. I don't see giraffes, but I swear I can never see the lane lines and all lights have a little halo around them. I swear if I am ever mayor/governor/president/queen my first mandate will be that they repaint ALL LANE LINES on the roads everywhere. In really bright white that never fades away. Thank you.

6:16 PM

Anonymous Alexa said...

I have the worst depth perception at night. I get really freaked out, especially if there is fog. That story is really scary about the man with the gun. Sort of sums up my worst fear.

5:52 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your story seems eerily familiar. I was "researching" on the web for "visual hallucinations" and your site came up. I think I've always had night time hallucinations while driving but have always dismissed it as "mistaking something for something else". Over the past year - 18mo or so I've been noticing broad daylight hallucinations. I've been scared that I am actually going crazy and recently worked up the nerve to tell my husband about my condition. Sometimes I think I see movement out of the corner of my eye only to look and see nothing out of the ordinary; sometimes I just plain mistake the shape of an ordinary object for something bizzare. (my travel kit bag was hanging on the towel rack in my bathroom and when I walked in I thought I saw a small child standing there) I get that small burst of adrenaline then realize what I am actually seeing.
I feel slightly relieved that I'm not the only one feeling this kind of crazy... but still slightly concerned for my mental health. fyi my husband found some interesting info out there that correlates circadian rhythm and visual hallucinations.

11:47 AM


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