Sunday, April 16, 2006

Not Tonight, Honey

It's Easter Sunday, and I have a headache.



I really shouldn't be writing right now. I have a headache.




I said, I have a headache!




Ah, well. Guess I'll have to grin and bear it.

My headaches have been coming around every now and then, perhaps once every three or four weeks. I haven't yet been able to identify the event or events that trigger them, but I suspect that they involve occasions where I give matters a comprehensive deal of thought. Not just a passing or a detailed analysis, mind you, but a comprehensive one. The big picture. The entire kit and kaboodle. The whole shebang.

Heh. That would probably explain why I seem to get them during budget forecasts, at least.

Someone once mentioned the possibility that I was suffering from migraines. It's not far-fetched, really... migraines are a relatively common malady, and they're certainly not unknown in the medical community. But I've heard that migraines usually come with blurry vision and the occasional hallucination, and I know that I don't get that whenever my cerebral cortex starts acting up.

I'll probably regret saying this, but I have to admit that I'd like to find out how it feels to suffer from migraines. It's the only way by which I can describe the feeling, after all. Right now my headache feels as though someone's pounding on the inside of my temples with a twelve-inch hammer, but I can't help figuring that having a migraine would somehow feel... different. It's as though it would involve having a headache without actually having a headache (even if we all know otherwise).

That, and I'd like to experience the hallucinations. Hallucinations are always cool, and it's difficult enough to encounter them without delving into illegal substances.

I've read somewhere that Lewis Carroll suffered from migraines, and it sounds as though he had them pretty bad. His condition was so far advanced that he would literally start conjuring up hallucinations from nothing at all... although he would later gather some of the most notable ones in his writings and build a reputation entirely on these imaginings. Every mention of his Alice in Wonderland reminds me of headaches as a result.

You could think of it as turning a sow's ear into a silk purse, I suppose. Or you could think of it as simply writing what you know. L. Frank Baum turned his experience with carnival attractions and freakshows into the marvelously twisted Wizard of Oz universe. Mozart occasionally composed music while playing billiards. Edgar Allan Poe wrote a few of his works while drunk.

And in the meantime I've got a hammer pounding away at the insides of my head, eroding what's left of my skull in thin, plaster-like beatings.

The headaches usually only last for an evening or so. For that matter, I find myself playing host to them for exactly one night more often than not. I usually end up with something that feels like a bad hangover the next morning, as though all the thoughts decided to leak out of my ears sometime during my fitful sleep.

It's funny, really. I know that I get these headaches every now and then. I know that the throbbing usually subsides once I lie down for a few minutes. I know that thinking about a bunch of complicated stuff will get the monstrous migraine roaring again. I know that squeezing my skull between two pillows will force the voice in my head to calm down for a bit, and I know that any sensation of pleasure or inspiration will start it back up.

The trouble is, I don't know why. Is there a doctor in the house?

It's as though the brain is some huge machine that we don't completely understand. (Not that there are actually any machines in this world that we fully understand in the first place.) Someone should really make a bumper sticker with the same sentiment: The mind is a wonderful piece of equipment, but sometimes it will blow a fuse. When that happens, all that we poor, unknowing mortals can do is the equivalent of hitting the TV to improve the reception.

We think, analyze, cogitate, process, opine, estimate, guess, research, remember, reach, recall, comprehend, analogize, meditate, will, compel, assume, coordinate, counter and learn anything and everything these days, but we don't know how the brain does it.

And so we get headaches. Like the one that's bothering me at this very moment.


I mean, really bothering me at this very moment.

I get irritable during headaches. I only snap at select instances, though, like people or situations who force me to think at a time when thinking just tightens the mental vise. It really has to be understandable there -- after all, I can choose not to think too deeply about a particular issue, but I can't choose when I'm going to have a headache. It happens.

Of course, this begs the question: Does the fact that I'm writing this in the middle of a headache mean that I'm not actually putting much thought into these words? That would be worthy of further analysis, I think.

Not now, though. If I go into it any further, then my head's probably going to explode.

And that's why I'm only touching on more than a few aspects of a personal headache that few people out there should really care about, much less read about in this blog. If you somehow get a headache while reading this on a Monday morning, you'll know that it's a special present from me, and you'll probably treasure it for the rest of your life.

Okay, maybe not that last part. Headaches are a pack of horrible little gremlins inside your head, and sooner or later they're going to find a way around that bit of aspirin that you gulp down to alleviate the pain.

Having a headache at others is obviously not a very nice thing to do. But hey, I'm doing it anyway. Right now. Right here. Right at you.

If you suddenly get this pounding sound coming from within your head, then you at least know who to blame...

Maybe it's nothing and I'm under the weather
Maybe it's just one of those bugs going round
Maybe I'm under a spell and it's magic
Maybe there's a witch doctor with an office in town
- Meatloaf, "It Just Won't Quit"

1 comment:

Sean said...

Edit -- I just added the Meatloaf reference to the article a few minutes ago, if only because it's over a day later and I still have the @#$%! headache. Appropriate, is it not?