Saturday, August 1, 2009

going to eleven

There's a bit in one of the great mockumentaries of all time when Nigel Tufnel, guitarist for wannabe-awesome metal band Spinal Tap, demonstrates his unique amplifier system. Every dial goes to eleven, rather than the usual ten, and no amount of logic will convince him that this is anything but mega-kewl.

"Going to eleven" has since become a catchphrase among a certain class of geeks, but I felt the need to explain it (and to include the movie clip below) because I realize not everyone is familiar with the phenomenon that is the Christopher Guest mockumentary. But Guest is a comic of world-class brilliance, and he plays Nigel in This is Spinal Tap.

So anyway, I've always been a goes-to-eleven kind of fetishist. As I've said elsewhere, my favorite kind of MC stories are the ones where the victims are most deeply brain-bound, where they can't even think except by command. And I'm continuing to seek out that elusive eleven in my own personal hypnosis experiments.

I've come to accept that I'll probably never achieve a state of true mindlessness in hypnosis (Besides, if I did, how would I know it?), but perhaps I can reach a state where I feel the bonds on my brain as something almost physical, something that prevents my thoughts from traveling down certain avenues and forces me to think and do - or not think or do - certain things.

And physicality is indeed proving to be the key. For instance, there's a suggestion in the current version of my generic induction that says, "Perhaps you can imagine that your eyes have opened again, but that they are now completely white. The only reason you can't see out of your empty, white eyes is that I don't allow you to see out of them. If I commanded you to see now, you would. You would see exactly what I wanted you to see, no more, no less." And damned if I don't really feel like my eyes are open but unseeing when I get to that command. I can actually sense my upper eyelids drawn back into my eye sockets.

Of course, I also have several other places in that induction where the synthesized programming voice gloats over how helpless she's made me and how thoroughly she controls me. Using "Mary in stadium" works fantastically well for this, because of the echo. When you have the ear buds in and you hear that voice echoing right inside your brain, it's very easy to imagine that your head is a vast, empty cavern with her all alone in the middle of it.

I also like to turn the "brainwaves" (binaural beats) up loud enough to hear them thrumming in my head like alien brainwashing rays, and I've created a few animated GIF's to go along with my personal sessions - no easy feat when all you've got to make the GIF's are an ancient program designed for JPG's and non-animated GIF's, and a very simple freeware program that animates still images you already possess.

(As an aside, that reminds me to ask: Does anyone out there know how to "turn on" a Flash object I downloaded but can't get to auto-play? The only way I can do that right now is to right click and select "play," but that isn't possible in the middle of a Virtual Hypnotist session.)

But back to the topic at hand. I'm thinking of how to rework some of Bee's experiences from Queen Bee Becomes a Drone into a personalized VH session, since her induction relies so much on physicality. I think it could work very well for me.

Right now, though, I have other priorities, like polishing "My Very Own Serial Number" for publication in another week or two. I think you'll find a couple of scenes in the second chapter that really do go to eleven...or maybe even twelve.

Nigel would be so proud.


Amber said...

If you download a .SWF file and you can't figure out how to open it, right click on it (assuming you're running Windows) and choose Open with -> (the browser of you choice)

With regards of getting your hypnosis up 11, I would suggest continuing with the hallucinations of body changes. The eyelids opening and revealing white eyes are a fantastic set of visualizations!

For what it's worth, I love your drone preset for VH. If I may ask, how often do you update it?


thrall said...

Thanks, Amber, but I *can* open the .SWF file. The problem is that it just sits there, unmoving, until I right-click and select "play."

As for how often I update my personal VH sessions, the answer is almost daily. But I do plan to post new versions of some of them online pretty soon.

Katie B. said...

"This one goes to 11" is one of the GREAT scenes of filmed comedy. I approve this message!

Blnkstr said...

very nice entry! your descriptions of the white-eyed stare and the thrumming alien brain-rays/binaurals sounded really effective to me too, so i'm beginning to suspect i should try them in my own self-induction attempts. it's lovely to find someone who's coming up with ideas that might help me erase my own over-working brain. thanks! ;)