Joho the Blogchess Archives - Joho the Blog

August 18, 2008

I am up-down dyslexic

I know that I’m right-left dyslexic, although “dyslexic” can’t be the right (left?) word, can it? But I recently realized I’m also up-down dyslexic: if you tell me to climb the hill, I won’t roll down it, but if you give me a trapezoidal plug and a trapezoidal socket — like the small end of a USB plug, or a VGA plug — I will try to insert it the wrong way up 50% of the time.

I assume this is tied into my extraordinarily low scores on tests for spatial ability. You know the test where they show you a cube unfolded into six squares, some with various shapes drawn on them, and then you’re supposed to figure out which squares are adjacent? Not only can’t I do that, I have trouble imagining them folded into a square. To me, they might be instructions for making an origami heron or the shadow cast by a fourth dimensional cube onto a two dimensional surface. Or Space Dominoes. I just can’t tell.

This, by the way, make me the world’s most annoying chess player. Obviously, I can’t picture the board ten moves ahead. But I also can’t picture the board one move ahead. So, I have to actually move my piece to see what it would look like, and, if you’ll let me, to judge your possible responses, I’ll move your pieces too.

My nightmare: I’m piloting a spaceship over the surface of the Empire’s Death Cube, which is folding randomly because of a warp in space-time, and my only hope is to fly to the left and insert the trapezoidal nose of my ship into the trapezoidal hole of the Death Cube’s energy portal. And then I look out my window and see that the Cube is made out of seafood.

Oh, did I mention that I’m afraid of seafood?

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