• Styles Yugen

Misophonia

The world is noisy. So much so that I sometimes feel like I’m stuck looking at the world through the blades of a fan. Smell, sight: I get these things. But I can’t feel for the blasting wind across my face or hear properly for the eye glazing drone of the fan. It’s all right there, just out of reach, and most times I’ve tried reaching out to touch, my finger gets cut.

Then sometimes, and only sometimes, does the fan slow and something can get through clearly. For a moment I connect, understand, and feel like I belong. Then the fan drones on, blasting away the vestiges of warmth and companionship. The world continues, planets spin, and stars burn. Nothing changes. I keep living my life the way I always did, never growing beyond what I can see through the blades of my spinning fan.

It’s all too common in our world: people pass each other by, never sparing a moment for their fellow man. It’s a shame. It’s the root of many of our atrocities, past and future, and it never seems to stop. Empathy is hard, takes effort, and can backfire. Many don’t bother; it’s just too much effort and risk.

Then there are those odd ones, those that ooze something so strange, so rare, so intoxicating, that it’s hard to not be spellbound. I met someone like that, an old woman working in a back alley clinic on its way out. Lucy was her name. She was mostly blind due to operable cataracts--she chooses not to operate--but is still excellent at her profession.

Most would claim her to be a doctor, but she is more than that. Lucy is a healer in more than just a physical sense. She has the experience and wisdom to offer far more to her patients than just a cure for their ailments.

Lucy offers a perspective on the world similar to what I imagine an old philosopher on the oldest, tallest, most inhospitable mountain might profess. As a doctor, Lucy got her start by doing good for good’s sake, trying to make the world a better place. Through her years of service she gained an appreciation for those who were willing to stop and enjoy a sweet in the middle of a sour day--


It’s raining on the worst day imaginable and you’re stuck outside in it. But it’s warm and you can’t change the weather, so enjoy it. Dance in the rain and savour the feeling of it running down your back and dripping off your eyebrows. Enjoy the sweetness, it’ll never happen this way again.


--and not look back. Lucy is getting close to retiring, and I wish her the best. Thank you Lucy, for stopping the fan and reminding me to enjoy life--maybe even grow beyond those spinning blades.


I intend to try, as hard as it can be sometimes, and I hope you magnificent bastards will as well. What’s the point of living your life if you’re not going to take a moment to enjoy it?


Styles Yugen, signing off...and do Lucy’s sweets justice; it’s the least we can do.

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Lucy’s Candy Recipe:

  • 2 cups sugar

  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch

  • 4 tablespoons butter

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 0.5 cup corn syrup

  • 1.5 cups water

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

  • 1 tablespoon cherry/raspberry extract

  • Cream Mixture:

  • 1 tablespoon butter

  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream

  • 2 cups honey

  • 1 cup sugar


Candy: In large saucepan stir together the sugar and cornstarch. Add the butter, salt, corn syrup, and water; mix well. Bring to boil over medium heat, stirring to mix in butter. Heat to 275 degrees, or until a small amount of syrup dropped forms hard but pliable treads.

Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla and flavored extract. Pour into greased 8x8 baking dish. When cool enough to handle, remove candy from pan and pull until it loses shine and becomes stiff. Work in cream mixture and roll into ropes; cut with scissors and wrap in waxed paper.

Creame: Combine cream and honey, add sugar and cook over medium heat, stirring until sugar is melted and mixture comes to boil.

Cover pan and boil for 1 minute. Uncover and cook without stirring until 290. Remove from heat and pour into prepared 15x10x1 pan. Cool until easy to handle.

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Science Fiction and the pursuit of escapism, 2020.