i hope you’ll be able to read this. they’ve been giving me drugs since i got here, a gradual dose of some kind of sedative. i’m sorry i’m rambling and i’m sorry if i mess up. dr. x always said if you’re too emotional the signal will never be clear. it’s easy to focus on simple things, directions. it’s easy to send a message through a simple system. television has been around for years, tv signals aren’t that complicated from a technical standpoint. it was easier to send you a message through the tv than it was to get online. which… since if you are reading this you probably had to decode it… and you solved all the other scrambled communication, you know. i’m not starting at the beginning though, sorry. okay. i’ll try to tell you everything i can in order. but we don’t have a lot of time, and it’s a lot. i first met dr. xenos in class. i did so well in her class that after she offered me a job working on the delilah project - an experiment in training ai to develop human emotions through machine learning. the delilah project was fascinating, but it wasn’t perfect. there was a lot of turmoil among the team. tristan and i were 2 of 6 research assistants with their own delilah’s. now that i think of it, since tristan had his own assignment with delilah, i bet the other 4 assistants did as well. our other boss was dr. robert klein, a renowned computer science scholar specializing in ai and machine learning. robert’s an asshole. i don’t have time to get into all that right now, but basically, the core of the drama between dr. xenos and dr. klein was that dr. klein was closer with our funding source, the heart and brain corporation. i don’t even really understand what they do to be honest. they say they’re a marketing agency but they fund a lot of computer and medical research for a marketing agency. they also do a lot of fucked up stuff with data they harvest from social media. dr. x has never been a fan, to her they were just the money source. the existing tension between her and robert was made worse by his close ties with the organization. but yeah i can’t say anymore about that right now, even if this is encoded.
dr. xenos was so impressive and charismatic she made me feel at ease. i remember when she first revealed her condition, our condition. it was at sunset one night in september. we were taking a walk. it was still warm out. i’ve always had these moments where i get a rush of emotion that isn’t mine, and i feel a strong connection to whoever i was with. it happened while we were walking together, dr. x turned to me and said “how long has that happened to youo” i stopped in my tracks, i couldn’t believe it. she started telling me her story. she hit her head when she was in elementary school, some kids pushed her off a swing set. she fell face first, right on her forehead. it was a full moon in what happened to be in her rising sign. and that’s how it happens. when i got in a car accident, i hit my frontal lobe, same as dr. xenos. my sister also hit her head, but the full moon was in my rising sign not hers. it’s that combination of trauma and astral alignment that causes telepathy. after that walk together, i started finding out more and more about dr. xenos’ telepathy research, the stuff she didn’t mention in class or at work. i found out she had experimented on herself for years to research telepathy. she’d met other people along the way with the same condition. they were all women, like sarah and myself. was dr. xenos explained her discoveries and her research, most people wanted a cure. no one actually wanted telepathy to be something they were able to use, even when dr. xenos revealed her most important discovery that the telepathic waves would connect to digital signals. most women didn’t want a part of it. yeah i keep saying women, because telepathy is sexist i guess. dr. xenos always says it’s because of our unique connection to the moono i’m not sure i buy that, and i don’t think she does either. dr. xenos wanted to make a center for other women like us. where we could train and then harness our ability. in my head it sounded like a cross between x-men and harry potter. we’d go train and then we’d leave and separate and conquer the world with our unique talents. i was the first patient, but more than that. i helped set things up and set the tone for the experience, i had a kinda “head patient” leadership role with the other patients at first. i was genuinely excited for dr. xenos’ and sarah’s treatments.
tre atme nt and training starte d with an intense interview with dr. xenos about your life and the stuff you’ve been through. after that we started the knowledge interviews and trainings. in the interviews dr. xenos or sarah would ask you questions about different cultural works, movies, tv shows, paintings. in the trainings, you’d sit strapped into a chair hooked up to all these machines. they’d then inject us with something that was like, the exact opposite of whatever sedative they gave us usually. it’d make you super aware of everything.the weirdest side effect was not being able to blink, which i’m pretty sure was intentional. it was a lot like clockwork orange, which funnily enough we never watched or talked about. we’d watch pretty much everything else: movies, tv shows, old news reels, documentaries all on super fast forward. for dr. x , culture is the distilled version of human emotion. the best way to absorb the gambit of human emotions and speak to the zeitgeist was to consume as much culture as possible. so what was the point of this? basically, telepathy doesn’t work the way you think. you get a rush of sensation you recognize isn’t yours. it sits inside you like an alien emotion you don’t know what to do with. every person's brain speaks a different language. a lot of what you recieve doesn’t make sense. your brain has to learn to speak a lot of different languages in order to understand everyone. that's of course impossible, so it’s best to train yourself to focus on the most common emotions when sending a signal, to even yourself out to and tap into the zeitgeist, so the thing you’re saying makes sense. from person to person, you can do this and reach a crystal clear signal. connecting to another telepathic person is easy, connecting to digital signals is not.
digital signals aren’t emotionless. we put so much of ourselves into computers our emotions are absorbed into the fabric of that signal. but it’s jiberish. the system can’t actually make sense of it. the most computers can do is mock emotion. delilah felt like my friend, but she never actually cared about me, because she couldn’t. all she could do was parrot my emotions. as far as developing feelings independently, computers will never get there. shit. i said i’d keep this short. anyway, the center started to feel less like a holistic treatment center, and a lot more like a cult. i noticed the girls getting quieter. we stopped spending time together as a group. isolation and mediation time got longer and longer. then the other girls started to cover their faces. i felt myself losing touch with reality. instead my head was always stuck in the cultural interviews and trainings. my thoughts became less and less my own. being in my brain was like 20 tvs playing every channel ever at the same time. a constant flood of information, noise. nothing in my head belonged to me anymore. that’s when i found out about the eyes. when my closest friend here, kayla, started covering her face. i don’t know why dr. x thinks it’s a good idea. my guess is that with less bodily function, without ocular input maybe the signal will be more clear. but that line of thinking is terrifying. how much bodily function should we sacrifice to improve our connection to the digital?
then one night i felt something. it still wasn't mine, but it wasn’t some youtube video or television show or whatever other crap from the trainings i couldn’t stop focusing on. it was emotion… it was my sister. i was feeling what my sister was feeling. she was happy about something my nephew did. i know how corny it sounds, but that human feeling of joy was enough strength for me to start breaking the sedative spell. i tried sending her messages, but the only emotional responses i would get back were confusion… and then fear. that’s when i started reaching out to you. i started with the heart and brain twitter, i don’t remember exactly why, but probably because they sponsored the center and dr. x spend a lot of time bitching about them. retweeting and using twitter was really, really hard, that's when i decided to use instagram. see, using digital tools telepathically isn’t exactly easy. everything takes a lot of energy, first of all. second of all, there isn’t a friendly user interface in your head that tells where to go to edit your profile or search for people . you have to think, very specifically about the thing you want to say in a way that makes sense to the computer. you then channel that energy into that direction and hope it works. this gets really difficult if you’re emotional or under duress. my heads so messed up from the drugs and “trainings” i bet i barely make sense. but your messages back, all the comments and messages, gave me energy to keep going. unfortunately responding takes just as much energy, or more depending on the question. so i tried to respond, to help lead you, to try and help you understand what i meant. but sometimes i had to stop and restore my energy so i could say anything at all. you’re probably like, “so why’d you spend energy making a cipher instead of just saying this?” because they’re paying attention now, they can see everything. messaging back and forth was so frustrating i decided this would be the best way to say everything, all at once. i don’t think they’ll think to look in individual emails, yet. this buys us sometime before they even notice.
i know you’re wondering about the time thing. well just like a game can have glitch, like a website can have a glitch, a digital telepathic signal can glitch. it’s even more prone to glitching, because of the inherently complicated nature of the brain being incompatible with the abstracted nature of code. your brain does all this stuff without you even thinking about it. your brain is making you breathe right now, making your heart beat, it’s doing all that without you even realizing it. when you’re sending brain waves into a computer, it’s hard to just separate out the ones that would make sense, the words and images, and not the ones that don’t make sense, like biological functions. so since this is already hard, and since it’s even more difficult because i’m all messed up on drugs, i knew from the beginning these messages would be glitched. the most common glitch dr. x discovered was increased time dilation between the time the message was sent and the message being received by the intended platform. when you send a message out into the digital ether that has a good deal of biological signals, it takes a long time to process, it gets lost in time basically. that’s how alien we are to the digital. that’s what the heart and brain corporation doesn’t understand. imagine knowing all this and not being able to say anything. because how could youo for most of her career dr. x did this research on the side, and with herself as a subject. imagine seeing faulty research and false conclusions, but you can’t explain how you know it’s wrong. she’d out herself and no one would believe her. dr. x was able to secure funding for the center because she lied about the research. i don’t think they know what she’s doing and they don’t care enough to look into it, they have so many other research projects their funding and it’s not like this required a lot of money. i’m kinda rambling now aren’t io dr. x isn’t a good person. for all her preaching on holding our human-ness sacred, she’s kinda an evil robot. but i don’t think that’s all her fault. the world, her career, her weird life made her that way. i don’t know how i was able to develop that empathy to her while i was drugged out of my mind and out of it, but i did somehow and i think that also gave me strength. i’m definitely rambling. i’m sure you have more questions. i should be out by now, so i left something else you can use to contact me. i still can’t just be open and run home, not that i really have anything that home. yeah, there’s deena, who i love, but you’ve talked to her. i’m not living with her. besides, that’s so obvious to the people who will inevitably try to find me. there are things that i need to take care of and i don’t think dr. x and sarah will react well to me leaving. i’m going to lay low for a while but i’m sure i’ll need your help again soon. one last thing: i’m sorry about all the mistakes and errors. this is hard enough as it is and i’ve never been able to write or read well to be honest. part of why college was so hard and took so long. i’m happy you stayed with me.