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I’m eager to crack open a book I just bought, The Interbrain by Digby Tantum.

From what I’ve gathered, this professor’s theory is essentially that our brains are connected with each other, allowing us to communicate on a subliminal level (akin to Wi-Fi). He argues that our brains work hard to pick up small micro-signals to indicate what others are thinking, explaining gut feelings and intuition, why laughter and yawns are contagious and even why commuters avoid prolonged eye contact with others on public transportation (as to not overload the brain with the output of subliminal information).

What makes his theory unique is that, along with perceived visual cues, our sense of smell is a key factor in how we communicate; that the areas of the brain associated with smell have some of the highest neuronal activity. This would mean we pick up on the slightest changes in chemistry that may indicate someone’s emotions (i.e. anxiety/fear, lust and so forth).

In relation to MBTI, this made me think about dominant intuitives (ENxPs and INxJs) and whether Ne/Ni means these types are more in tune to this “interbrain” network he describes. Again, I’ve yet to crack this sucker open and am merely curious as to the following before I delve in, so please humor me:

I. Have you always innately trusted your gut instincts and intuition regarding people or situations? If not, how did you begin to develop this as an Ne/Ni user?

II. Do you find yourself accurately predicting and finishing the thoughts or sentences of those you’re close to? Moreover, are you continually in close proximity with said people (or have been for an extended period of your life)?
 

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1. I did as a child, but then I begin to come up with rational explanations for my gut instincts. I am always able to come up with a plausible explanation. You cannot always extensively ponder your gut instinct, so I'd say I make a connection in the moment which explains my gut instinct. It's a well-established pattern so that's why it's instinctual.

2. I don't necessarily have to be close to or in continual proximity to the people whose sentences I finish.

Talking of the olfactory system and it's relation to human behaviour, here's a titillating short story by Roald Dahl which was published in the Playboy magazine:

 


Bitch

I HAVE so far released for publication only one episode from Uncle Oswald's
diaries. It concerned, some of you may remember, a carnal encounter between my
uncle and a Syrian female leper in the Sinai Desert. Six years have gone by since
its publication and nobody has yet come forward to make trouble. I am therefore
encouraged to release a second episode from these curious pages. My lawyer has
advised against it. He points out that some of the people are still living and are
easily recognizable. He says I will be sued mercilessly. Well, let them sue. I am
proud of my uncle. He knew how life should be lived. In a preface to the first
episode I said that Casanova's Memoirs read like a Parish Magazine beside Uncle
Oswald's diaries, and that the great lover himself, when compared with my uncle,
appears positively undersexed. I stand by that, and given time I shall prove it to
the world. Here then is a little episode from Volume XXIII, precisely as Uncle
Oswald wrote it: PARIS Wednesday Breakfast at ten. I tried the honey. It was
delivered yesterday in an early S�vres sucrier which had the lovely canarycoloured
ground known as Jon quille. "From Suzie,' the note said, "and thank you.'
It is nice to be appreciated. And the honey was interesting. Suzie Jolibois had,
among other things, a small farm south of Casablanca, and was fond of bees. Her
hives were set in the midst of a plantation of cannabis indica, and the bees drew
their nectar exclusively from this source. They lived, those bees, in a state of
perpetual euphoria and were disinclined to work. The honey was therefore very
scarce. I spread a third piece of toast. The stuff was almost black. It had a
pungent aroma. The telephone rang. I put the receiver to my ear and waited. I
never speak first when called. After all, I'm not phoning them. They're phoning
me.
"Oswald! Are you there?"
I knew the voice. "Yes, Henri," I said. "Good morning."
"Listen!" he said, speaking fast and sounding excited. "I think I've got it!
I'm almost certain I've got it! Forgive me if I'm out of breath, but I've just had
a rather fantastic experience. It's all right now. Everything's fine. Will you
come over?"
"Yes," I said. "I'll come over." I replaced the receiver and poured myself
another cup of coffee. Had Henri really done it at last? If he had, then I wanted
to be around to share the fun.
I must pause here to tell you how I met Henri Bione. Some three years ago I
drove down to Provence to spend a summer weekend with a lady who was interesting
to me simply because she possessed an extraordinarily powerful muscle in a region
where other women have no muscles at all. An hour after my arrival, I was
strolling alone on the lawn beside the river when a small dark man approached me.
He had black hairs on the backs of his hands and he made me a little bow and said,
"Henri Biotte, a fellow guest."
"Oswald Cornelius," I said.
Henri Biotte was as hairy as a goat. His chin and cheeks were covered with
bristly black hair and thick tufts of it were sprouting from his nostrils. "May I
join you?" he said, falling into step beside me and starting immediately to talk.
And what a talker he was! How Gallic, how excitable. He walked with a mad little
hop, and his fingers flew as if he wanted to scatter them to the four winds of
heaven, and his words went off like firecrackers, with terrific speed. He was a
Belgian chemist, he said, working in Paris. He was an olfactory chemist. He had
devoted his life to the study of olfaction.
"You mean smell?" I said.
"Yes, yes!" he cried. "Exactly! I am an expert on smells. I know more about
smells than anyone else in the world!"
"Good smells or bad?" I asked, trying to slow him down.
"Good smells, lovely smells, glorious smells!" he said. "I make them! I can
make any smell you want!"
He went on to tell me he was the chief perfume blender to one of the great
couturiers in the city. And his nose, he said, placing a hairy finger on the tip
of his hairy proboscis, probably looked just like any other nose, did it not? I
wanted to tell him it had more hairs sprouting from the noseholes than wheat from
the prairies and why didn't he get his barber to snip them out, but instead I
confessed politely that I could see nothing unusual about it.
"Quite so," he said. "But in actual fact it is a smelling organ of
phenomenal sensitivity. With two sniffs it can detect the presence of a single
drop of macroylic musk in a gallon of geranium oil."
"Extraordinary," I said.
"On the Champs Elys�es," he went on, "which is a wide thoroughfare, my nose
can identify the precise perfume being used by a woman walking on the other side
of the street."
"With the traffic in between?"
"With heavy traffic in between," he said.
He went on to name two of the most famous perfumes in the world, both of
them made by the fashion-house he worked for. "Those are my personal creations,"
he said modestly. "I blended them myself. They have made a fortune for the
celebrated old bitch who runs the business."
"But not for you?"
"Me! I am but a poor miserable employee on a salary," he said, spreading his
palms and hunching his shoulders so high they touched his earlobes. "One day,
though, I shall break away and pursue my dream."
"You have a dream?"
"I have a glorious, tremendous, exciting dream, my dear sir!"
"Then why don't you pursue it?"
"Because first I must find a man farsighted enough and wealthy enough to
back me."
Ah-ha, I thought, so that's what it's all about. "With a reputation like
yours, that shouldn't be too difficult," I said.
"The sort of rich man I seek is hard to find," he said. "He must be a sporty
gambler with a very keen appetite for the bizarre."
That's me, you clever little bugger, I thought. "What is this dream you wish
to pursue?" I asked him. "Is it making perfumes?"
"My dear fellow!" he cried. "Anyone can make perfumes! I'm talking about the
perfume! The only one that counts!"
"Which would that be?"
"Why, the dangerous one, of course! And when I have made t, I shall rule the
world!"
"Good for you," I said.
"I am not joking, Monsieur Cornelius. Would you permit me to explain what I
am driving at?"
"Go ahead."
"Forgive me if I sit down," he said, moving toward a bench. "I had a heart
attack last April and I have to be careful."
"I'm sorry to hear that."
"Oh, don't be sorry. All will be well so long as I don't overdo things."
It was a lovely afternoon and the bench was on the lawn near the riverbank
and we sat down on it. Beside us, the river flowed slow and smooth and deep, and
there were little clouds of waterflies hovering over the surface. Across the river
there were willows along the bank and beyond the willows an emerald-green meadow,
yellow with buttercups, and a single cow grazing. The cow was brown and white.
"I will tell you what kind of perfume I wish to make," he said. "But it is
essential I explain a few other things to you on the way or you will not fully
understand. So please bear with me a while." One hand lay limp upon his lap, the
hairy part upward. It looked like a black rat. He was stroking it gently with the
fingers of the other hand.
"Let us consider first," he said, "the phenomenon that occurs when a dog
meets a bitch in heat. The dog's sexual drive is tremendous. All self-control
disappears. He has only one thought in his head, which is to fornicate on the
spot, and unless he is prevented by force, he will do so. But do you know what it
is that causes this tremendous sex-drive in a dog?"
"Smell," I said.
"Precisely, Monsieur Cornelius. Odorous molecules of a special conformation
enter the dog's nostrils and stimulate his olfactory nerveendings. This causes
urgent signals to be sent to the olfactory bulb and thence to the higher brain
centres. It is all done by smell. If you sever a dog's olfactory nerve, he will
lose interest in sex. This is also true of many other mammals, but it is not true
of man. Smell has nothing to do with the sexual appetite of the human male. He is
stimulated in this respect by sight, by tactility, and by his lively imagination.
Never by smell."
"What about perfume?" I said.
"It's all rubbish!" he answered. "All those expensive scents in small
bottles, the ones I make, they have no aphrodisiac effect at all upon a man.
Perfume was never intended for that purpose. In the old days, women used it to
conceal the fact that they stank. Today, when they no longer stink, they use it
purely for narcissistic reasons. They enjoy putting it on and smelling their own
good smells. Men hardly notice the stuff. I promise you that."
"I do," I said.
"Does it stir you physically?"
"No, not physically. Aesthetically, yes."
"You enjoy the smell. So do I. But there are plenty of other smells I enjoy
more the bouquet of a good Lafite, the scent of a fresh Cornice pear, or the smell
of the air blowing in from the sea on the Brittany coast."
A trout jumped high in midstream and the sunlight flashed on its body. "You
must forget," said Monsieur Biotte, "all the nonsense about musk and ambergris and
the testicular secretions of the civet cat. We make our perfumes from chemicals
these days. If I want a musky odour I will use ethylene sebacate. Phenylacetic
acid will give me civet and benzaldehyde will provide the smell of almonds. No
sir, I am no longer interested in mixing up chemicals to make pretty smells."
For some minutes his nose had been running slightly, wetting the black hairs
in his nostrils. He noticed it and produced a handkerchief and gave it a blow and
a wipe. "What I intend to do," he said, "is to produce a perfume which will have
the same electrifying effect upon a man as the scent of a bitch in heat has upon a
dog! One whiff and that'!! be it! The man will lose all control. He'll rip off his
pants and ravish the lady on the spot!"
"We could have some fun with that," I said.
"We could rule the world!" he cried.
"Yes, but you told me just now that smell has nothing to do with the sexual
appetite of the human male."
"It doesn't," he said. "But it used to. I have evidence that in the period
of the post-glacial drift, when primitive man was far more closely related to the
ape than he is now, he still retained the ape-like characteristic of jumping on
any right-smelling female he ran across. And later, in the Palaeolithic and
Neolithic periods, he continued to become sexually animated by smell, but to a
lesser and lesser degree. By the time the higher civilizations had come along in
Egypt and China around 10,000 BC, evolution had played its part and had completely
suppressed man's ability to be stimulated sexually by smell. Am I boring you?"
"Not at all. But tell me, does that mean an actual physical change has taken
place in man's smelling apparatus?"
"Absolutely not," he said, "otherwise there'd be nothing we could do about
it. The little mechanism that enabled our ancestors to smell these subtle odours
is still there. I happen to know it is. Listen, you've seen how some people can
make their ears move a tiny bit?"
"I can do it myself," I said, doing it.
"You see," he said, "the ear-moving muscle is still there. It's a leftover
from the time when man used to be able to cock his ears forward for better
hearing, like a dog. He lost that ability over a hundred thousand years ago, but
the muscle remains. And the same applies to our smelling apparatus. The mechanism
for smelling those secret smells is still there, but we have lost the ability to
use it."
"How can you be so certain it's still there?" I asked.
"Do you know how our smelling system works?" he said.
"Not really."
"Then I shall tell you, otherwise I cannot answer your question. Attend
closely, please. Air is sucked in through the nostrils and passes the three
baffle-shaped turbinate bones in the upper part of the nose. There it gets warmer
and filtered. This warm air now travels up and over two clefts that contain the
smelling organs. These organs are patches of yellowish tissue, each about an inch
square. In this tissue are embedded the nerve-fibres and nerve-endings of the
olfactory nerve. Every nerve-ending consists of an olfactory cell bearing a
cluster of tiny hairlike filaments. These filaments act as receivers. "Receptors'
is a better word. And when the receptors are tickled or stimulated by odorous
molecules, they send signals to the brain. If, as you come downstairs in the
morning, you sniff into your nostrils the odorous molecules of frying bacon, these
will stimulate your receptors, the receptors will flash a signal along the
olfactory nerve to the brain, and the brain will interpret it in terms of the
character and intensity of the odour. And that is when you cry out, "Ah-ha, bacon
for breakfast!"
"I never eat bacon for breakfast," I said.
He ignored this.
"These receptors," he went on, "these tiny hair-like filaments are what
concern us. And now you are going to ask me how on earth they can tell the
difference between one odorous molecule and another, between say peppermint and
camphor?"
"How can they?" I said. I was interested in this.
"Attend more closely than ever now, please," he said. "At the end of each
receptor is an indentation, a sort of cup, except that it isn't round. This is the
"receptor site'. Imagine now thousands of these little hairlike filaments with
tiny cups at their extremities, all waving about like the tendrils of sea anemones
and waiting to catch in their cups any odorous molecules that pass by. That, you
see, is what actually happens. When you sniff a certain smell, the odorous
molecules of the substance which made that smell go rushing around inside your
nostrils and get caught by the little cups, the receptor sites. Now the important
thing to remember is this. Molecules come in all shapes and sizes. Equally, the
little cups or receptor sites are also differently shaped. Thus, the molecules
lodge only in the receptor sites which fit them. Pepperminty molecules go only
into special pepperminty receptor sites. Camphor molecules, which have a quite
different shape, will fit only into the special camphor receptor sites, and so on.
It's rather like those toys for small children where they have to fit variously
shaped pieces into the right holes."
"Let me see if I understand you," I said. "Are you saying that my brain will
know it is a pepperminty smell simply because the molecule has lodged in a
pepperminty reception site?"
"Precisely."
"But you are surely not suggesting there are differently shaped receptor
sites for every smell in the world?"
"No," he said, "as a matter of fact, man has only seven differently shaped
sites."
"Why only seven?"
"Because our sense of smell recognizes only seven "pure primary odours'. All
the rest are "complex odours' made up by mixing the primaries."
"Are you sure of that?"
"Positive. Our sense of taste has even less. It recognizes only four
primaries--sweet, sour, salt, and bitter! All other tastes are mixtures of these."
"What are the seven pure primary odours?" I asked him.
"Their names are of no importance to us," he said. "Why confuse the issue."
"I'd like to hear them."
"All right," he said. "They are camphoraceous, pungent, musky, ethereal,
floral, pepperminty, and putrid. Don't look so sceptical, please. This isn't my
discovery. Very learned scientists have worked on it for years. And their
conclusions are quite accurate, except in one respect."
"What's that?"
"There is an eighth pure primary odour which they don't know about, and an
eighth receptor site to receive the curiously shaped molecules of that odour!"
"Ah-ha-ha!" I said. "I see what you're driving at.,, "Yes," he said, "the
eighth pure primary odour is the sexual stimulant that caused primitive man to
behave like a dog thousands of years ago. It has a very peculiar molecular
structure."
"Then you know what it is?"
"Of course I know what it is."
"And you say we still retain the receptor sites for these peculiar molecules
to fit in to?"
"Absolutely."
"This mysterious smell," I said, "does it ever reach our nostrils nowadays?"
"Frequently."
"Do we smell it? I mean, are we aware of it?"
"No .11 "You mean the molecules don't get caught in the receptor sites?"
"They do, my dear fellow, they do. But nothing happens. No signal is sent
off to the brain. The telephone line is out of action. It's like that ear muscle.
The mechanism is still there, but we've lost the ability to use it properly."
"And what do you propose to do about that?" I asked.
"I shall reactivate it," he said. "We are dealing with nerves here, not
muscles. And these nerves are not dead or injured, they're merely dormant. I shall
probably increase the intensity of the smell a thousandfold, and add a catalyst."
"Go on," I said.
"That's enough."
"I should like to hear more," I said.
"Forgive me for saying so Monsieur Cornelius, but I don't think you know
enough about organoleptic quality to follow me any further. The lecture is over."
Henri Biotte sat smug and quiet on the bench beside the river stroking the
back of one hand with the fingers of the other. The tufts of hair sprouting from
his nostrils gave him a pixie look, but that was camouflage. He struck me rather
as a dangerous and dainty little creature, someone who lurked behind stones with a
sharp eye and a sting in his tail, waiting for the lone traveller to come by.
Surreptitiously I searched his face. The mouth interested me. The lips had a
magenta tinge, possibly something to do with his heart trouble. The lower lip was
caruncular and pendulous. It bulged out in the middle like a purse, and could
easily have served as a receptacle for small coins. The skin of the lip seemed to
be blown up very tight, as though by air, and it was constantly wet, not from
licking but from an excess of saliva in the mouth.
And there he sat, this Monsieur Henri Biotte, smiling a wicked little smile
and waiting patiently for me to react. He was a totally amoral man, that much was
clear, but then so was I. He was also a wicked man, and although I cannot in all
honesty claim wickedness as one of my own virtues, I find it irresistible in
others. A wicked man has a lustre all his own. Then again, there was something
diabolically splendid about a person who wished to set back the sex habits of
civilized man half a million years.
Yes, he had me hooked. So there and then, sitting beside the river in the
garden of the lady from Provence, I made an offer to Henri. I suggested he should
leave his present employment forthwith and set himself up in a small laboratory. I
would pay all the bills for this little venture as well as making good his salary.
It would be a five-year contract, and we would go fifty-fifty on anything that
came out of it.
Henri was ecstatic. "You mean it?" he cried. "You are serious?"
I held out my hand. He grasped it in both of his and shook it vigorously. It
was like shaking hands with a yak. "We shall control mankind!" he said. "We'll be
the gods of the earth!" He flung his arms around me and embraced me and kissed me
first on one cheek, then on the other. Oh, this awful Gallic kissing. Henri's
lower lip felt like the wet underbelly of a toad against my skin. "Let's keep the
celebrations until later," I said, wiping myself dry with a linen handkerchief.
Henri Biotte made apologies and excuses to his hostess and rushed back to
Paris that night. Within a week he had given up his old job and had rented three
rooms to serve as a laboratory. These were on the third floor of a house on the
Left Bank, on the Rue de Cassette, just off the Boulevard Raspaille. He spent a
great deal of my money equipping the place with complicated apparatus, and he even
installed a large cage into which he put two apes, a male and a female. He also
took on an assistant, a clever and moderately presentable young lady called
Jeanette. And with all that, he set to work.
You should understand that for me this little venture was of no great
importance. I had plenty of other things to amuse me. I used to drop in on Henri
maybe a couple of times a month to see how things were going, but otherwise I left
him entirely to himself. My mind wasn't on his job. I hadn't the patience for that
kind of research. And when results failed to come quickly, I began to lose all
interest. Even the pair of over-sexed apes ceased to amuse me after a while.
Only once did I derive any pleasure from my visits to his laboratory. As you
must know by now, I can seldom resist even a moderately presentable woman. And so,
on a certain rainy Thursday afternoon, while Henri was busy applying electrodes to
the olfactory organs of a frog in one room, I found myself applying something
infinitely more agreeable to Jeanette in the other room. I had not, of course,
expected anything out of the ordinary from this little frolic. I was acting more
out of habit than anything else. But my goodness, what a surprise I got! Beneath
her white overall, this rather austere research chemist turned out to be a sinewy
and flexible female of immense dexterity. The experiments she performed, first
with the oscillator, then with the high-speed centrifuge, were absolutely
breathtaking. In fact, not since that Turkish tightrope walker in Ankara (see Vol.
XXI) had I experienced anything quite like it. Which all goes to show for the
thousandth time that women are as inscrutable as the ocean. You never know what
you have under your keel, deep water or shallow, until you have heaved the lead.
I did not bother to visit the laboratory again after that. You know my rule.
I never return to a female a second time. With me at any rate, women invariably
pull out all the stops during the first encounter, and a second meeting can
therefore be nothing more than the same old tune on the same old fiddle. Who wants
that? Not me. So when I suddenly heard Henri's voice calling urgently to me over
the telephone that morning at breakfast, I had almost forgotten his existence.
I drove through the fiendish Paris traffic to the Rue de Cassette. I parked
the car and took the tiny elevator to the third floor. Henri opened the door of
the laboratory. "Don't move!" he cried. "Stay right where you are!" He scuttled
away and returned in a few seconds holding a little tray upon which lay two
greasy-looking red rubber objects. "Noseplugs," he said. "Put them in, please.
Like me. Keep out the molecules. Go on, ram them in tight. You'll have to breathe
through your mouth, but who cares?"
Each noseplug had a short length of blue string attached to its blunt lower
end, presumably for pulling it back out of the nostril. I could see the two bits
of blue string dangling from Henri's nostrils. I inserted my own noseplugs. Henri
inspected them. He rammed them in tighter with his thumb. Then he went dancing
back into the lab, waving his hairy hands and crying out, "Come in now, my dear
Oswald! Come in, come in! Forgive my excitement, but this is a great day for me!"
The plugs in his nose made him speak as though he had a bad cold. He hopped over
to a cupboard and reached inside. He brought out one of those small square bottles
made of very thick glass that hold about an ounce of perfume. He carried it over
to where I stood, cupping his hands around it as though it were a tiny bird.
"Look! Here it is! The most precious fluid in the entire world!"
This is the son of rubbishy overstatement I dislike intensely. "So you think
you've done it?" I said.
"I know I've done it, Oswald! I am certain I've done it!"
"Tell me what happened."
"That's not so easy," he said. "But I can try."
He placed the little bottle carefully on the bench. "I had left this
particular blend, Number 1076, to distil overnight," he went on. "That was because
only one drop of distillate is produced every half hour. I had it dripping into a
sealed beaker to prevent evaporation. All these fluids are extremely volatile. And
so, soon after I arrived at eight thirty this morning, I went over to Number 1076
and lifted the seal from the beaker. I took a tiny sniff. Just one tiny sniff.
Then I replaced the seal."
"And then?"
"Oh, my God, Oswald, it was fantastic! I completely lost control of myself!
I did things I would never in a million years have dreamed of doing!"
"Such as what?"
"My dear fellow, I went completely wild! I was like a wild beast, an animal!
I was not human! The civilizing influences of centuries simply dropped away! I was
Neolithic!"
"What did you do?"
"I can't remember the next bit very clearly. It was all so quick and
violent. But I became overwhelmed by the most terrifying sensation of lust it is
possible to imagine. Everything else was blotted out of my mind. All I wanted was
a woman. I felt that if I didn't get hold of a woman immediately, I would
explode."
"Lucky Jeanette," I said, glancing toward the next room. "How is she now?"
"Jeanette left me over a year ago," he said. "I replaced her with a
brilliant young chemist called Simone Gautier."
"Lucky Simone, then."
"No, no!" Henri cried. "That was the awful thing! She hadn't arrived! Today
of all days, she was late for work! I began to go mad. I dashed out into the
corridor and down the stairs. I was like a dangerous animal. I was hunting for a
woman, any woman, and heaven help her when I found her!"
"And who did you find?"
"Nobody, thank God. Because suddenly, I regained my senses. The effect had
worn off. It was very quick, and I was standing alone on the second-floor landing.
I felt cold. But I knew at once exactly what had happened. I ran back upstairs and
re-entered this room with my nostrils pinched tightly between finger and thumb. I
went straight to the drawer where I stored the noseplugs. Ever since I started
working on this project, I have kept a supply of noseplugs ready for just such an
occasion. I rammed in the plugs. Now I was safe."
"Can't the molecules get up into the nose through the mouth?" I asked him
"They can't reach the receptor sites," he said. "That's why you can't smell
through your mouth. So I went over to the apparatus and switched off the heat. I
then transferred the tiny quantity of precious fluid from the beaker to this very
solid airtight bottle you see here. In it there are precisely eleven cubic
centimetres of Number 1076."
"Then you telephoned me."
"Not immediately, no. Because at that point, Simone arrived. She took one
look at me and ran into the next room, screaming."
"Why did she do that?"
"My God, Oswald, I was standing there stark naked and I hadn't realized it.
I must have ripped off all my clothes!"
"Then what?"
"I got dressed again. After that, I went and told Simone exactly what had
happened. When she heard the truth, she became as excited as me. Don't forget,
we've been working on this together for over a year now."
"Is she still here?"
"Yes. She's next door in the other lab."
It was quite a story Henri had told me. I picked up the little square bottle
and held it against the light. Through the thick glass I could see about half an
inch of fluid, pale and pinkish-grey, like the juice of a ripe quince.
"Don't drop it," Henri said. "Better put it down." I put it down. "The next
step," he went on, "will be to make an accurate test under scientific conditions.
For that I shall have to spray a measured quantity on to a woman and then let a
man approach her. It will be necessary for me to observe the operation at close
range."
"You are a dirty old man," I said.
"I am an olfactory chemist," he said primly.
"Why don't I go out into the street with my noseplugs in," I said, "and
spray some on to the first woman who comes along. You can watch from the window
here. It ought to be fun."
"It would be fun all right," Henri said. "But not very scientific. I must
make the tests indoors under controlled conditions."
"And I will play the male part," I said.
"No, Oswald."
"What do you mean, no. I insist."
"Now listen to me," Henri said. "We have not yet found out what will happen
when a woman is present. This stuff is very powerful, I am certain of that. And
you, my dear sir, are not exactly young. It could be extremely dangerous. It could
drive you beyond the limit of your endurance."
I was stung. "There are no limits to my endurance," I said.
"Rubbish," Henri said. "I refuse to take chances. That is why I have engaged
the fittest and strongest young man I could find."
"You mean you've already done this?"
"Certainly I have," Henri said. "I am excited and impatient. I want to get
on. The boy will be here any minute."
"Who is he?"
"A professional boxer."
"Good God."
"His name is Pierre Lacaille. I am paying him one thousand francs for the
job."
"How did you find him?"
"I know a lot more people than you think, Oswald. I am not a hermit."
"Does the man know what he's in for?"
"I have told him that he is to participate in a scientific experiment that
has to do with the psychology of sex. The less he knows the better."
"And the woman? Who will you use there?"
"Simone, of course," Henri said. "She is a scientist in her own right. She
will be able to observe the reactions of the male even more closely than me."
"That she will," I said. "Does she realize what might happen to her?"
"Very much so. And I had one hell of a job persuading her to do t. I had to
point out that she would be participating in a demonstration that will go down in
history. It will be talked about for hundreds of years."
"Nonsense," I said.
"My dear sir, through the centuries there are certain great epic moments of
scientific discovery that are never forgotten. Like the time when Dr Horace Wells
of Hartford, Connecticut, had a tooth pulled out in 1844."
"What was so historic about that?"
"Dr Wells was a dentist who had been playing about with nitrous oxide gas.
One day, he got a terrible toothache. He knew the tooth would have to come out,
and he called in another dentist to do the job. But first he persuaded his
colleague to put a mask over his face and turn on the nitrous oxide. He became
unconscious and the tooth was extracted and he woke up again as fit as a flea. Now
that, Oswald, was the first operation ever performed in the world under general
anaesthesia. It started something big. We shall do the same."
At this point, the doorbell rang. Henri grabbed a pair of noseplugs and
carried them with him to the door. And there stood Pierre, the boxer. But Henri
would not allow him to enter until the plugs were rammed firmly up his nostrils. I
believe the fellow came thinking he was going to act in a blue film, but the
business with the plugs must have quickly disillusioned him. Pierre Lacaille was a
bantamweight, small, muscular, and wiry. He had a flat face and a bent nose. He
was about twenty-two and not very bright.
Henri introduced me, then ushered us straight into the adjoining laboratory
where Simone was working. She was standing by the lab bench in a white overall,
writing something in a notebook.
She looked up at us through thick glasses as we came in. The glasses had a
white plastic frame.
"Simone," Henri said, "this is Pierre Lacaille." Simone looked at the boxer
but said nothing. Henri didn't bother to introduce me.
Simone was a slim thirtyish woman with a pleasant scrubbed face. Her hair
was brushed back and plaited into a bun. This, together with the white spectacles,
the white overall, and the white skin of her face, gave her a quaint antiseptic
air. She looked as though she had been sterilised for thirty minutes in an
autoclave and should be handled with rubber gloves. She gazed at the boxer with
large brown eyes.
"Let's get going," Henri said. "Are you ready?"
"I don't know what's going to happen," the boxer said. "But I'm ready." He
did a little dance on his toes.
Henri was also ready. He had obviously worked the whole thing out before I
arrived. "Simone will sit in that chair," he said, pointing to a plain wooden
chair set in the middle of the laboratory. "And you, Pierre, will stand on the
six-metre mark with your noseplugs still in."
There were chalk lines on the floor indicating various distances from the
chair, from half a metre up to six metres.
"I shall begin by spraying a small quantity of liquid on to the lady's
neck," Henri went on addressing the boxer. "You will then remove your noseplugs
and start walking slowly toward her." To me he said, "I wish first of all to
discover the effective range, the exact distance he is from the subject when the
molecules hit."
"Does he start with his clothes on?" I asked.
"Exactly as he is now."
"And is the lady expected to cooperate or to resist?"
"Neither. She must be a purely passive instrument in his hands."
Simone was still looking at the boxer. I saw her slide the end of her tongue
slowly over her lips.
"This perfume," I said to Henri, "does it have any effect upon a woman?"
"None whatsoever," he said. "That is why I am sending Simone out now to
prepare the spray." The girl went into the main laboratory, closing the door
behind her.
"So you spray something on the girl and I walk toward her," the boxer said.
"What happens then?"
"We shall have to wait and see," Henri said. "You are not worried, are you?"
"Me, worried?" the boxer said. "About a woman?"
"Good boy," Henri said. Henri was becoming very excited. He went hopping
from one end of the room to the other, checking and rechecking the position of the
chair on its chalk mark and moving all breakables such as glass beakers and
bottles and test-tubes off the bench on to a high shelf. "This isn't the ideal
place," he said, "but we must make the best of it." He tied a surgeon's mask over
the lower part of his face, then handed one to me.
"Don't you trust the noseplugs?"
"It's just an extra precaution," he said. "Put it on."
The girl returned carrying a tiny stainless-steel spray-gun. She gave the
gun to Henri. Henri took a stop watch from his pocket. "Get ready, please," he
said. "You Pierre, stand over there on the six-metre mark." Pierre did so. The
girl seated herself in the chair. It was a chair without arms. She sat very prim
and upright in her spotless white overall with her hands folded on her lap, her
knees together. Henri stationed himself behind the girl. I stood to one side. "Are
we ready?" Henri cried.
"Wait," said the girl. It was the first word she had spoken. She stood up,
removed her spectacles, placed them on a high shelf, then returned to her seat.
She smoothed the white overall along her thighs, then clasped her hands together
and laid them again on her lap.
"Are we ready now?" Henri said.
"Let her have it," I said. "Shoot."
Henri aimed the little spray-gun at an area of bare skin just below Simone's
ear. He pulled the trigger. The gun made a soft hiss and a fine misty spray came
out of its nozzle.
"Pull your noseplugs out!" Henri called to the boxer as he skipped quickly
away from the girl and took up a position next to me. The boxer caught hold of the
strings dangling from his nostrils and pulled. The vaselined plugs slid out
smoothly.
"Come on, come on!" Henri shouted. "Start moving! Drop the plugs on the
floor and come forward slowly!" The boxer took a pace forward. "Not so fast!"
Henri cried. "Slowly does it! That's better! Keep going! Keep going! Don't stop!"
He was crazy with excitement, and I must admit I was getting a bit worked up
myself. I glanced at the girl. She was crouching in the chair, just a few yards
away from the boxer, tense, motionless, watching his every move, and I found
myself thinking about a white female rat I had once seen in a cage with a huge
python. The python was going to swallow the rat and the rat knew it, and the rat
was crouching very low and still, hypnotized, transfixed, utterly fascinated by
the slow advancing movements of the snake.
The boxer edged forward.
As he passed the five-metre mark, the girl unclasped her hands. She laid
them palms downwards on her thighs. Then she changed her mind and placed them more
or less underneath her buttocks, gripping the seat of the chair on either side,
bracing herself, as it were, against the coming onslaught.
The boxer had just passed the two-metre mark when the smell hit him. He
stopped dead. His eyes glazed and he swayed on his legs as though he had been
tapped on the head with a mallet. I thought he was going to keel over but he
didn't. He stood there swaying gently from side to side like a drunk. Suddenly he
started making noises through his nostrils, queer little snorts and grunts that
reminded me of a pig sniffing around its trough. Then without any warning at all
he sprang at the girl. He ripped off her white overall, her dress, and her
underclothes. After that, all hell broke loose.
There is little point in describing exactly what went on during the next few
minutes. You can guess most of it anyway. I do have to admit, though, that Henri
had probably been right in choosing an exceptionally fit and healthy young man. I
hate to say it, but I doubt my middle-aged body could have stood up to the
incredibly violent gymnastics the boxer seemed driven to perform. I am not a
voyeur. I hate that sort of thing. But in this case, I stood there absolutely
transfixed. The sheer animal ferocity of the man was frightening. He was like a
wild beast. And right in the middle of it all, Henri did an interesting thing. He
produced a revolver and rushed up to the boxer and shouted, "Get away from that
girl! Leave her alone or I'll shoot you!" The boxer ignored him, so Henri fired a
shot just over the top of his head and yelled, "I mean it, Pierre! I shall kill
you if you don't stop!" The boxer didn't even look up.
Henri was hopping and dancing about the room and shouting, "It's fantastic!
It's magnificent! Unbelievable! It works! It works! We've done it, my dear Oswald!
We've done it!"
The action stopped as quickly as it had begun. The boxer suddenly let go of
the girl, stood up, blinked a few times, and then said, "Where the hell am I?
"What happened?"
Simone, who seemed to have come through it all with no bones broken jumped
up, grabbed her clothes, and ran into the next room. "Thank you, mademoiselle,"
said Henri as she flew past him.
The interesting thing was that the bemused boxer hadn't the faintest idea
what he had been doing. He stood there naked and covered with sweat, gazing around
the room and trying to figure out how in the world he came to be in that
condition.
"What did I do?" he asked. "Where's the girl?"
"You were terrific!" Henri shouted, throwing him a towel. "Don't worry about
a thing! The thousand francs is all yours!"
Just then the door flew open and Simone, still naked, ran back into the lab.
"Spray me again!" she cried. "Oh, Monsieur Henri, spray me just one more time!"
Her face was alight, her eyes shining brilliantly.
"The experiment is over," Henri said. "Go away and dress yourself" He took
her firmly by the shoulders and pushed her back into the other room. Then he
locked the door.
Half an hour later, Henri and I sat celebrating our success in a small caf�
down the street. We were drinking coffee and brandy. "How long did it go on?" I
asked.
"Six minutes and thirty-two seconds," Henri said.
I sipped my brandy and watched the people strolling by on the sidewalk.
"What's the next move?"
"First, I must write up my notes," Henri said. "Then we shall talk about the
future."
"Does anyone else know the formula?"
"Nobody."
"What about Simone?"
"She doesn't know it."
"Have you written it down?"
"Not so anyone else could understand it. I shall do that tomorrow."
"Do it first thing," I said. "I'll want a copy. What shall we call the
stuff? We need a name."
"What do you suggest?"
"Bitch," I said. "Let's call it Bitch." Henri smiled and nodded his head
slowly. I ordered more brandy. "It would be great stuff for stopping a riot," I
said. "Much better than tear-gas. Imagine the scene if you sprayed it on an angry
mob."
"Nice," Henri said. "Very nice."
"Another thing we could do, we could sell it to very fat, very rich women at
fantastic prices."
"We could do that," Henri answered.
"Do you think it would cure loss of virility in men?" I asked him.
"Of course," Henri said. "Impotence would go out the window."
"What about octogenarians?"
"Them, too," he said, "though it would kill them at the same time."
"And marriages on the rocks?"
"My dear fellow," Henri said. "The possibilities are legion."
At that precise moment, the seed of an idea came sneaking slowly into my
mind. As you know, I have a passion for politics. And my strongest passion,
although I am English, is for the politics of the United States of America. I have
always thought it is over there, in that mighty and mixed-up nation, that the
destinies of mankind must surely lie. And right now, there was a President in
office whom I could not stand. He was an evil man who pursued evil policies. Worse
than that, he was a humourless and unattractive creature. So why didn't I, Oswald
Cornelius, remove him from office?
The idea appealed to me.
"How much Bitch have you got in the lab at the moment?" I asked.
"Exactly ten cubic centimetres," Henri said.
"And how much is one dose?"
"We used one cc for our test."
"That's all I want," I said. "One cc. I'll take it home with me today. And a
set of noseplugs."
"No," Henri said. "Let's not play around with it at this stage. It's too
dangerous."
"It is my property," I said. "Half of it is mine. Don't forget our
agreement."
In the end, he had to give in. But he hated doing it. We went back to the
lab, inserted our noseplugs, and Henri measured out precisely one cc of Bitch into
a small scent-bottle. He sealed the stopper with wax and gave me the bottle. "I
implore you to be discreet," he said. "This is probably the most important
scientific discovery of the century, and it must not be treated as a joke."
From Henri's place, I drove directly to the workshop of an old friend,
Marcel Brossollet. Marcel was an inventor and manufacturer of tiny precise
scientific gadgets. He did a lot of work for surgeons, devising new types of
heart-valves and pacemakers and those little oneway valves that reduce
intracranial pressure in hydrocephalics.
"I want you to make me," I said to Marcel, "a capsule that will hold exactly
one cc of liquid. To this little capsule, there must be attached a timing device
that will split the capsule and release the liquid at a predetermined moment. The
entire thing must not be. more than half an inch long and half an inch thick. The
smaller the better. Can you manage that?"
"Very easily," Marcel said. "A thin plastic capsule, a tiny section of
razor-blade to split the capsule, a spring to flip the razor-blade, and the usual
pre-set alarm system on a very small ladies' watch. Should the capsule be
fillable?"
"Yes. Make t so I myself can fill it and seal it up. Can I have it in a
week?"
"Why not?" Marcel said. "It is very simple."
The next morning brought dismal news. That lecherous little slut Simone had
apparently sprayed herself with the entire remaining stock of Bitch over nine
cubic centimetres of it, the moment she arrived at the lab! She had then sneaked
up behind Henri, who was just settling himself at his desk to write up his notes.
I don't have to tell you what happened next. And worst of all, the silly
girl had forgotten that Henri had a serious heart condition. Damn it, he wasn't
even allowed to climb a flight of stairs. So when the molecules hit him the poor
fellow didn't stand a chance. He was dead within a minute, killed in action as
they say, and that was that.
The infernal woman might at least have waited until he had written down the
formula. As it was, Henri left not a single note. I searched the lab after they
had taken away his body, but I found nothing. So now more than ever, I was
determined to make good use of the only remaining cubic centimetre of Bitch in the
world.
A week later, I collected from Marcel Brossollet a beautiful little gadget.
The timing device consisted of the smallest watch I had ever seen, and this,
together with the capsule and all the other parts, had been secured to a tiny
aluminium plate three eighths of an inch square. Marcel showed me how to fill and
seal the capsule and set the timer. I thanked him and paid the bill.
As soon as possible, I travelled to New York. In Manhattan, I put up at the
Plaza Hotel. I arrived there at about three in the afternoon. I took a bath, had a
shave, and asked room service to send me up a bottle of Glenlivet and some ice.
Feeling clean and comfortable in my dressinggown, I poured myself a good strong
drink of the delicious malt whisky, then settled down in a deep chair with the
morning's New York Times. My suite overlooked Central Park, and through the open
window I could hear the hum of traffic and the blaring of cabdrivers' horns on
Central Park South. Suddenly, one of the smaller headlines on the front page of
the paper caught my eye. It said, PRESIDENT ON TV TONIGHT. I read on.
The President is expected to make an important foreign policy statement when
he speaks tonight at the dinner to be given in his honour by the Daughters of the
American Revolution in the ballroom of the Waldorf Astoria.
My God, what a piece of luck!
I had been prepared to wait in New York for many weeks before I got a chance
like this. The President of the United States does not often appear with a bunch
of women on television. And that was exactly how I had to have him. He was an
extraordinarily slippery customer. He had fallen into many a sewer and had always
come out smelling of shit. Yet he managed every time to convince the nation that
the smell was coming from someone else, not him. So the way I figured it was this.
A man who rapes a woman in full sight of twenty million viewers across the country
would have a pretty hard time denying he ever did it.
I read on.
The President will speak for approximately twenty minutes, commencing at
nine p. m. and all major TV networks will carry the speech. He will be introduced
by Mrs Elvira Ponsonby, the incumbent President of the Daughters of the American
Revolution. When interviewed in her suite at the Waldorf Towers, Nits Ponsonby
said.
It was perfect! Mrs Ponsonby would be seated on the President's right. At
ten past nine precisely, with the President well into his speech and half the
population of the United States watching, a little capsule nestling secretly in
the region of Mrs Ponsonby's bosom would be punctured and half a centimetre of
Bitch would come oozing out on to her gilt lam� ball-gown. The President's head
would come up, and he would sniff and sniff again, his eyes would bulge, his
nostrils would flare, and he would start snorting like a stallion. Then suddenly
he would turn and grab hold of Mrs Ponsonby. She would be flung across the dining-
table and the President would leap on top of her, with the pie a la mode and
strawberry shortcake flying in all directions.
I leaned back and closed my eyes, savouring the delicious scene. I saw the
headlines in the papers the next morning: PRESIDENT'S BEST PERFORMANCE TO DATE
PRESIDENTIAL SECRETS REVEALED TO NATION PRESIDENT INAUGURATES BLUE TV and so on.
He would be impeached the next day and I would slip quietly out of New York
and head back to Paris. Come to think of it, I would be leaving tomorrow!
I checked the time. It was nearly four o'clock. I dressed myself without
hurrying. I took the elevator down to the main lobby and strolled across to
Madison Avenue. Somewhere around Sixty-second Street, I found a good florist's
shop. There I bought a corsage of three massive orchid blooms all fastened
together. The orchids were cattleyas, white and mauve splotches on them. They were
particularly vulgar. So, undoubtedly, was Mrs Elvira Ponsonby. I had the shop pack
them in a handsome box tied up with gold string. Then I strolled back to the
Plaza, carrying the box, and went up to my suite.
I locked all doors leading to the corridor in case the maid should come in
to turn back the bed. I got out the noseplugs and vaselined them carefully. I
inserted them in my nostrils, ramming them home very hard. I tied a Surgeon's mask
over my lower face as an extra precaution, just as Henri had done. I was ready now
for the next step.
With an ordinary nose-dropper, I transferred my precious cubic centimetre of
Bitch from the scent bottle to the tiny capsule. The hand holding the dropper
shook a little as I did this, but all went well. I sealed the capsule. After that,
I wound up the tiny watch and set it to the correct time. It was three minutes
after five o'clock. Lastly, I set the timer to go off and break the capsule at ten
minutes past nine.
The stems of the three huge orchid blooms had been tied together by the
florist with a broad oneinch-wide white ribbon and it was a simple matter for me
to remove the ribbon and secure my little capsule and timer to the orchid stems
with cotton thread. When that was done, I wound the ribbon back around the stems
and over my gadget. Then I retied the bow. It was a nice job.
Next, I telephoned the Waldorf and learned that the dinner was to begin at
eight o'clock, but that the guests must be assembled in the ballroom by seven
thirty, before the President arrived.
At ten minutes to seven, I paid off my cab outside the Waldorf Towers
entrance and walked into the building. I crossed the small lobby and placed my
orchid box on the reception desk. I leaned over the desk, getting as close as
possible to the clerk. "I have to deliver this package to Mrs Elvira Ponsonby," I
whispered, using a slight American accent. "It is a gift from the President."
The clerk looked at me suspiciously.
"Mrs Ponsonby is introducing the President before he speaks tonight in the
ballroom," I added. "The President wishes her to have this corsage right away."
"Leave it here and I'll have it sent up to her suite," the clerk said.
"No, you won't," I told him. "My orders are to deliver it in person. What's
the number of her suite?"
The man was impressed. "Mrs Ponsonby is in five-o-one," he said.
I thanked him and went into the elevator. When I got out at the fifth floor
and walked along the corridor, the elevator operator stayed and watched me. I rang
the bell to five-o-one.
The door was opened by the most enormous female I had ever seen in my life.
I have seen giant women in circuses. I have seen lady wrestlers and weightlifters.
I have seen the huge Masai women in the plains below Kilimanjaro. But
never had I seen a female so tall and broad and thick as this one. Nor so
thoroughly repugnant. She was groomed and dressed for the greatest occasion of her
life, and in the two seconds that elapsed before either of us spoke, I was able to
take most of it in the metallic silver-blue hair with every strand glued into
place, the brown pig-eyes, the long sharp nose sniffing for trouble, the curled
lips, the prognathous jaw, the powder, the mascara, the scarlet lipstick and, most
shattering of all, the massive shored-up bosom that projected like a balcony in
front of her. It stuck out so far it was a miracle she didn't topple forward with
the weight of it all. And there she stood, this pneumatic giant, swathed from neck
to ankles in the stars and stripes of the American flag.
"Mrs Elvira Ponsonby?" I murmured.
"I am Mrs Ponsonby," she boomed. "What do you want? I am extremely busy."
"Mrs Ponsonby," I said. "The President has ordered me to deliver this to you
in person."
She melted immediately. "The dear man!" she shouted. "How perfectly gorgeous
of him!" Two massive hands reached out to grab the box. I let her have it.
"My instructions are to make sure you open it before you go to the banquet,"
I said.
"Sure I'll open it," she said. "Do I have to do it in front of you?"
"If you wouldn't mind."
"Okay, come on in. But I don't have much time."
I followed her into the living-room of the suite. "I am to tell you," I
said, "that it comes with all good wishes from one President to another."
"Ha!" she roared. "I like that! What a gorgeous man he is!" She untied the
gold string of the box and lifted the lid. "I guessed it!" she shouted. "Orchids!
How splendid! They're far grander than this poor little thing I'm wearing!"
I had been so dazzled by the galaxy of stars across her bosom that I hadn't
noticed the single orchid pinned to her left-hand side.
"I must change over at once," she said. "The President will be expecting me
to wear his gift."
"He certainly will," I said.
Now to give you an idea of how far her chest stuck out in front of her, I
must tell you that when she reached forward to unpin the flower, she was only just
able to touch it even with her arms fully extended. She fiddled around with the
pin for quite a while, but she couldn't really see what she was doing and it
wouldn't come undone. "I'm terrified of tearing this gorgeous gown," she said.
"Here, you do it." She swung around and thrust her mammoth bust in my face. I
hesitated. "Go on!" she boomed. "I don't have all night!" I went to it, and in the
end I managed to get the pin unhooked from her dress.
"Now let's get the other one on," she said.
I put aside the single orchid and lifted my own flowers carefully from the
box.
"Have they got a pin?" she asked.
"I don't believe they have," I said. That was something I'd forgotten.
"No matter," she said. "We'll use the old one." She removed the safety-pin
from the first orchid, and then, before I could stop her, she seized the three
orchids I was holding and jabbed the pin hard into the white ribbon around the
stems. She jabbed it almost exactly into the spot where my little capsule of Bitch
was lying hidden. The pin struck something hard and wouldn't go through. She
jabbed it again. Again it struck metal. "What the hell's under here?" she snorted.
"Let me do it!" I cried, but it was too late, because the wet stain of Bitch
from the punctured capsule was already spreading over the white ribbon and one
hundredth of a second later the smell hit me. It caught me smack under the nose
and it wasn't actually like a smell at all because a smell is something
intangible. You cannot feel a smell. But this stuff was palpable. It was solid. It
felt as though some kind of fiery liquid were being squirted up my nostrils under
high pressure. It was exceedingly uncomfortable. I could feel it pushing higher
and higher, penetrating far beyond the nasal passages, forcing its way up behind
the forehead and reaching for the brain. Suddenly the stars and stripes on Mrs
Ponsonby's dress began to wobble and bobble about and then the whole room started
wobbling and I could hear my heart thumping in my head. It felt as though I were
going under an anaesthetic.
At that point, I must have blacked out completely, if only for a couple of
seconds.
When I came round again, I was standing naked in a rosy room and there was a
funny feeling in my groin. I looked down and saw that my beloved sexual organ was
three feet long and thick to match. It was still growing. It was lengthening and
swelling at a tremendous rate. At the same time, my body was shrinking. Smaller
and smaller shrank my body. Bigger and bigger grew my astonishing organ, and it
went on growing, by God, until it had enveloped my entire body and absorbed it
within itself. I was now a gigantic perpendicular penis, seven feet tall and as
handsome as they come.
I did a little dance around the room to celebrate my splendid new condition.
On the way I met a maiden in a star-spangled dress. She was very big as maidens
go. I drew myself up to my full height and declaimed in a loud voice:
"The summer's flower is to the summer sweet,
It flourishes despite the summer's heat.
But tell me truly, did you ever see
A sexual organ quite so grand as me?"
The maiden leapt up and flung her arms as far around me as she could. Then
cried out:
"Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?
Shall I...Oh dear, I know not what to say.
But all my life I've had an itch to kiss
A man who could erect himself like this."
A moment later, the two of us were millions of miles up in outer space,
flying through the universe in a shower of meteorites all red and gold. I was
riding her bareback, crouching forward and gripping her tightly between my thighs.
"Faster!" I shouted, jabbing long spurs into her flanks. "Go faster!" Faster and
still faster she flew, spurting and spinning around the rim of the sky, her mane
streaming with sun, and snow waving out of her tail. The sense of power I had was
overwhelming. I was unassailable, supreme. I was the Lord of the Universe,
scattering the planets and catching the stars in the palm of my hand and tossing
them away as though they were ping-pong balls.
Oh, ecstasy and ravishment! Oh, Jericho and Tyre and Sidon! The walls came
tumbling down and the firmament disintegrated, and out of the smoke and fire of
the explosion, the sitting-room in the Waldorf Towers came swimming slowly back
into my consciousness like a rainy day. The place was a shambles. A tornado would
have done less damage. My clothes were on the floor. I started dressing myself
very quickly. I did it in about thirty seconds flat. And as I ran toward the door,
I heard a voice that seemed to be coming from somewhere behind an upturned table
in the far corner of the room. "I don't know who you are, young man," it said.
"But you've certainly done me a power of good."

 
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I. Have you always innately trusted your gut instincts and intuition regarding people or situations? If not, how did you begin to develop this as an Ne/Ni user?
No. I used to believe so when I was younger but that was the naivety talking and not reasonable confidence in my gut. The closest I think you can to getting this is dabbling more with the sensing side of things. I mean, if we were to go by the theories you are suggesting then you definitely need sensing. I often see intuition, although it can be uncannily accurate, as all made up in the head, sensing would pick up on these more subtle cues of smell and the like. Besides that theory, sensing gives me a more reliable database to draw from, it balances out my more ludicrous ideas as I develope it.

II. Do you find yourself accurately predicting and finishing the thoughts or sentences of those you’re close to? Moreover, are you continually in close proximity with said people (or have been for an extended period of your life)?
I have done, not recently. I was on the same wavelength of my ex to the point that we could have a deep conversation without words. I was in continuous close proximity to her. I saw her every day more or less. I also got something, although not to the same level, with my best friend from school. I haven't experienced this since. I moved country and see my best friend from school about twice a year if I'm lucky. I haven't had the same connection with him.
 

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Anthropormorphism.

It's not really that difficult, I notice my sub-conscious scanning for micro expressions, even down to the split second someone glances off to the right as opposed to the left, etc.

Millions of years of evolution gives you those genetic instincts.

I used to wonder why my intuition picked up on what it does, but now I think it's pretty clear, although not everyone is so good at it.
 

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I. Have you always innately trusted your gut instincts and intuition regarding people or situations? If not, how did you begin to develop this as an Ne/Ni user?

° I get strong feelings and institutions but since I am an Ne dom , I know that it's just random connections. I tend to leave things out in the open unless there are multiple of facts to back up the matter .
With that said i can read people's intentions quite well and I usually know what to say to make them feel more relaxed or comfortable


II. Do you find yourself accurately predicting and finishing the thoughts or sentences of those you’re close to? Moreover, are you continually in close proximity with said people (or have been for an extended period of your life)?

Yes ! It comes to the point that I can just look at my husband and know what he wants or thinking- for example- hell raise his eyebrows at me and I'll tell him " you want a glass of orange juice?" Or " it's 10 pm" . It freaks people out , the way he and I communicate.

I avoid finishing other people's sentences for them bc I get really annoyed when somebody finishes my sentences or answer for me - whether they're right or wrong



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I’m eager to crack open a book I just bought, The Interbrain by Digby Tantum.

From what I’ve gathered, this professor’s theory is essentially that our brains are connected with each other, allowing us to communicate on a subliminal level (akin to Wi-Fi). He argues that our brains work hard to pick up small micro-signals to indicate what others are thinking, explaining gut feelings and intuition, why laughter and yawns are contagious and even why commuters avoid prolonged eye contact with others on public transportation (as to not overload the brain with the output of subliminal information).

What makes his theory unique is that, along with perceived visual cues, our sense of smell is a key factor in how we communicate; that the areas of the brain associated with smell have some of the highest neuronal activity. This would mean we pick up on the slightest changes in chemistry that may indicate someone’s emotions (i.e. anxiety/fear, lust and so forth).

In relation to MBTI, this made me think about dominant intuitives (ENxPs and INxJs) and whether Ne/Ni means these types are more in tune to this “interbrain” network he describes. Again, I’ve yet to crack this sucker open and am merely curious as to the following before I delve in, so please humor me:
Really interesting theory, would explain many things, including communication btw species and why we are the only ones whom developed language. Is any experimental data validating it?

I. Have you always innately trusted your gut instincts and intuition regarding people or situations? If not, how did you begin to develop this as an Ne/Ni user?
Always innately, plus I'm not the only one in the family. I think if exists, it have a big genetics component.

II. Do you find yourself accurately predicting and finishing the thoughts or sentences of those you’re close to? Moreover, are you continually in close proximity with said people (or have been for an extended period of your life)?
Yes, with some people I can anticipate their words and even their chooses or desires. No need to be in continuous proximity, even with people with I had limited shared experience (e.g. coworkers) it works. But it does not work with all people, and it is fully in the subconscious level. Works also if even I don't fully speak their language and somehow also with animals.

But I'm a very bad emotional "reader" via cognition. I don't catch visual feedback (e.g. smiling or being concern), probably because I never train in it, relaying in this subconscious type of feedback.

Finally, I always have a scaring doubt, that I'm not sure if it is just reading. You know what I mean, no? I don't want to be "writing"....
 
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Really interesting theory, would explain many things, including communication btw species and why we are the only ones whom developed language. Is any experimental data validating it?
He actually touches on that quite a bit in the book! It made me think about how many species are able to mimic human language as well and I’m still pondering that one in relation to what I just read. And yes, Tantam sites many case studies to support his theory (which are extensively notated at the end of each chapter). I highly recommend it if you’re into neuroscience and that jazz.

Finally, I always have a scaring doubt, that I'm not sure if it is just reading. You know what I mean, no? I don't want to be "writing"....
Could you explain this thought further?
 

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He actually touches on that quite a bit in the book! It made me think about how many species are able to mimic human language as well and I’m still pondering that one in relation to what I just read. And yes, Tantam cites many case studies to support his theory (which are extensively notated at the end of each chapter). I highly recommend it if you’re into neuroscience and that jazz.
Yes I do :) Unfortunately I cannot find the book in any library I do have access... but I found this article of him

The favour of emotions. Digby Tantam. Psychology and Psychotherapy: Theory, Research and Practice (2003), 76, 23–45
The flavour of emotions - Tantam - 2003 - Psychology and Psychotherapy: Theory, Research and Practice - Wiley Online Library

He references some studies, eg. here:

"Flavours are perceived by smell, by olfaction, and there are many links between
olfaction and emotion. For example, volunteers in experimental studies show auto-
nomic reactions to emotions that are similar to those shown to odours (Alaoui-Ismaieli,
Vernet-Maury, Dittmar, Delhomme, & Chanel, 1997) and Žnd it easy to link an odour
with an emotion that they believe goes with it (Nakano, Kikuchi, Matsui, Hatayama, & t,
1992). Odours can become subliminally paired with situations (Degel, Piper, & Koester,
2001), just as I have suggested that emotors absorb emotions from situations, and both
odours (Ludvigson & Rottman, 1989) and emotions can in�uence performance in
memory tasks (Taylor et al., 1998). These effects are synergistic (Herz, 1997). Moreover,
the same area of the brain—the cingulate gyrus —is activated during the processing of
olfactory stimuli (Royet et al., 1999; Savic & Gulyas, 2000) and of emotions (Bussey,
Everitt, & Robbins, 1997; Teasdale et al., 1999)."


May I kindly ask you to write the references to the more relevant experimental studies cited in the book? I'm particularly interested in experimental set-ups to estimate the bandwidth of the subliminal channel. I think everyone agree that fear/awareness can be triggered by the smell of blood or decomposing corpses, but what about more complex information?. Because at end, we are talking about that, isn't ?

And precisely for me this one of the "weakness" of the olfactory carrier hypothesis. To commit information is necessary modulation around a base carrier, and the bitrate is directly proportional to the speed in which this modulation can be changed. But, chemicals producing smells cannot be changed quickly, because their extinction relays in passive diffusion. Therefore, the olfactory carrier will be extremely slow.

Could you explain this thought further?
Information channels are usually bidirectional, even if the feedback loop is just as non-informative as an acknowledgement (ACK) or non-acknowledge (NACK) signal. Let's assume that is just this, by unexpectedly sending this signal (typically ACK when no message is there, or no message is supposed to be there, therefore is an involuntary leak) one could stress the emissor, and as this happens via a subliminal channel, stimulate their emotions. This could be a trivial example of "writing". Please note that feedback loop does not have to be necessary via same carrier than the signal carrier, just associated to that channel by the emissor.

Adding complexity to the writing, let's say one can end in some situation like the Mule from Isaac Asimov's Foundation novels.
 
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Yes I do :) Unfortunately I cannot find the book in any library I do have access
It became available on Amazon just over a week ago, so I imagine it may not be in many libraries yet.

May I kindly ask you to write the references to the more relevant experimental studies cited in the book?
I’d check out some of the following studies he references regarding the insular network and olfaction:

Keller, A., and Malaspina, D. (2013). Hidden consequences of olfactory dysfunction: A patient report series. BMC Ear, Nose and Throat Disorders, 13( 1), 8.

Mahmut, M. K., and Stevenson, R. J. (2016). Investigating left-and right-nostril olfactory abilities with respect to psychopathy. Chemosensory Perception, 9(3), 131–140.

Mesulam, M. M. (1998). From sensation to cognition. Brain, 121( 6), 1013–1052.

Milinski, M., Croy, I., Hummel, T., and Boehm, T. (2013). Major histocompatibility complex peptide ligands as olfactory cues in human body odour assessment. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London B: Biological Sciences, 280( 1755).

Smeets, M. A. M., and Dijksterhuis, G. B. (2014). Smelly primes: When olfactory primes do or do not work. Frontiers in Psychology, 5, 96.

Sullivan, R. M., Wilson, D. A., Ravel, N., and Mouly, A. M. (2015). Olfactory memory networks: From emotional learning to social behaviors. Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience, 9, 36.

*See below.

I'm particularly interested in experimental set-ups to estimate the bandwidth of the subliminal channel. I think everyone agree that fear/awareness can be triggered by the smell of blood or decomposing corpses, but what about more complex information?. Because at end, we are talking about that, isn't?

And precisely for me this one of the "weakness" of the olfactory carrier hypothesis. To commit information is necessary modulation around a base carrier, and the bitrate is directly proportional to the speed in which this modulation can be changed. But, chemicals producing smells cannot be changed quickly, because their extinction relays in passive diffusion. Therefore, the olfactory carrier will be extremely slow.

Information channels are usually bidirectional, even if the feedback loop is just as non-informative as an acknowledgement (ACK) or non-acknowledge (NACK) signal. Let's assume that is just this, by unexpectedly sending this signal (typically ACK when no message is there, or no message is supposed to be there, therefore is an involuntary leak) one could stress the emissor, and as this happens via a subliminal channel, stimulate their emotions. This could be a trivial example of "writing". Please note that feedback loop does not have to be necessary via same carrier than the signal carrier, just associated to that channel by the emissor.
Interesting, thanks for explaining! I won’t pretend as though I’m equally versed in information systems and technology but I think I caught the gist. Shamelessly Googles protocol theory. XD

With that, I do agree that a subliminal network solely based the processes of the olfactory cortex would be a slow way to transfer data. However, I think it’s important to note that the insula plays a major role in detection of stimuli across multiple modalities. Throughout the book, Tantam recognizes olfaction as an integral part of cognition, communication and emotion in tandem with other inputs (auditory, tactile and visual).

*Tantam references many studies that explore the lack of olfactory processes and how they affect the insular network in order to bolster his theory; that some individuals are essentially excluded from this “interbrain” network as a result.

All in all, I think he did a fine job both explaining and simplifying a very complex subject.
 
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Really interesting theory, would explain many things, including communication btw species and why we are the only ones whom developed language. Is any experimental data validating it?
Oh, we are not the only species to develop language-- I LOVE this info I'm going to share with you! Absolutely fascinating! Lets see what I can dig up for you. I've been following this idea for some time, since I learned that groundhogs have a language and that there is basically a Groudhog (that group of groundhogs) to English dictionary. Then also, I believe we may be cracking some whale languages. It sounds like most whale pods have their own languages and they don't always get along with other "tribes" basically. And for sure birds must have a form of language-- I wonder if there is work on that. Let's see what I can dig up. Oh, it's prairedogs--- I must have been thinking of our holiday tomorrow. Oooh, at least see these first 2--- anyone interested in animals should listen and read that.
https://www.npr.org/2011/01/20/132650631/new-language-discovered-prairiedogese
Research News: Warbling Whales Speak a Language All Their Own | Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI.org)
Still good, but not as interesting:
https://news.nationalgeographic.com...calizations-animals-oceans-galapagos-science/
Whale learns same language as dolphins, research finds | The Independent

I got to see something very special last summer. I was out on a whale tour. We have resident gray whales and there had been a humpback passing through. So I had just barely watched a documentary on how humpbacks blow bubble-nets. And I was in this little 6 person boat with our Gray whale marine biologist (Carrie Newell) and we saw the Gray whale in front of us blow a bubble ring! I mean, it can't get any cooler! Carrie said that the Gray whales had just learned to do this from the humback and it was still supper rare to see! And the thing is, the Grays eat krill/mycen shrimp (here in Oregon, the reason they can be resident) and so it's a wonder if the bubble net works for them too. It was a beautiful thing to see!
 

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I’m eager to crack open a book I just bought, The Interbrain by Digby Tantum.

From what I’ve gathered, this professor’s theory is essentially that our brains are connected with each other, allowing us to communicate on a subliminal level (akin to Wi-Fi). He argues that our brains work hard to pick up small micro-signals to indicate what others are thinking, explaining gut feelings and intuition, why laughter and yawns are contagious and even why commuters avoid prolonged eye contact with others on public transportation (as to not overload the brain with the output of subliminal information).

What makes his theory unique is that, along with perceived visual cues, our sense of smell is a key factor in how we communicate; that the areas of the brain associated with smell have some of the highest neuronal activity. This would mean we pick up on the slightest changes in chemistry that may indicate someone’s emotions (i.e. anxiety/fear, lust and so forth).

In relation to MBTI, this made me think about dominant intuitives (ENxPs and INxJs) and whether Ne/Ni means these types are more in tune to this “interbrain” network he describes. Again, I’ve yet to crack this sucker open and am merely curious as to the following before I delve in, so please humor me:

I. Have you always innately trusted your gut instincts and intuition regarding people or situations? If not, how did you begin to develop this as an Ne/Ni user?

II. Do you find yourself accurately predicting and finishing the thoughts or sentences of those you’re close to? Moreover, are you continually in close proximity with said people (or have been for an extended period of your life)?
I keep trying to bring up that people sometimes mention that our type tends to be "psychic" but I don't like that term and I don't think other people like that term. Yet---I can't believe that you guys haven't experienced these things too. II've been on here long enough to feel like I'm totally NOT unique. We are all patchwork quilts, but some of the same material runs through us is how I see it.. lol. Oh gosh, am I wrong?
#1. I have always trusted my Ne/Fi combo and maybe I have quite a lot of developed Ni as well (I have to take more of those function tests maybe), but the descriptions make me think I use Ni quite a bit--- maybe the Ni's who know me would disagree? I don't know. But I feel this may be my most spiritual side and where my epiphanies seem to come from.)
#2, I finish other people's sentences but I always figured this was just me being impatient and cutting to the chase. I actively suppress this and 25% the time I don't succeed, get impatient and start suggesting sentences to people /shame. I don't know what percentage I do this, but I don't see it as a good trait in me. Nor do I see it as a manifestation of the kind of thing you're describing. I see it as reading people well and then accurately predicting. Often I predict wrong, another reason why I try not to do this and also why I think it isn't anything special. When I was young, though, I often wondered about telepathy and (funny story) in 3rd grade my teacher caught me watching my neighbor writing a sentence on a homework assignment and thought I might be cheating when really I was just super interested if she would come up with the same sentence that I did to a question. lol I never did that again.

Okay, so you guys may or may not know that I study pagan religions as a hobby. There are plenty of stories that these groups tell about shamanism that are pretty much the same kind of ideas that this guy's book is driving at. Of course they don't talk about it in a scientific way. But there are plenty of stories dealing with telepathy and out of body experiences and curses and I can tell you lots of documented things that happen in those cultures --eh, take, um, bone killings in Australian Aboriginal culture that Western medicine actually has to be trained on because it's common among Australian 1st people.
https://www.nationalgeographic.com/...found/amazon-encounter-explorer-photographer/

After watching this Rhett and Link I thought it would be fun to try with my extended family and some friends... um... it was uncanny! Very interesting. Also... after reading so much from the mysticism and cults of pagan or indiginous cultures (do we have words that convey my respect for these? It seems so Western and "other" to say indiginous, but after reading so much, I started to feel that people are capable of things that "spiritually" bind us all together. I wondered, even though the last 200 years of "enlightenment" has kind of set us back in spirituality to accomodate science (believe me, I love science too) that our future as humans would probably be to evolve more in areas of communication that bind us.... that's my thought and has been developing over many years... It makes sense to me that we should only advance in harmony and communication if we are to advance as a human race. I can hardly tell all my many thoughts about all the different areas I've studied in this area that cause me to think as I do. Sorry for the long post--- it could have been much longer!
 
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