Notes on Weirdness: Vertigo

Gravity is the force against which all firm things and intransigent principles are measured. Or so people say. I wish they were right; I know they are wrong. From my earliest days until I was seventeen, I lived in fear of the suspension of gravity. It could go in an instant. For no reason. Suddenly my sense of a relation of attachment to the ground or to any horizon would disappear. I’d crumple, curl up, and clutch my head. My self-perception would zoom out to include the available space — the room, the sky, the galaxy — in which I perceived myself to be an infinitely tiny and ungrounded mite. No considerations of propriety or self-preservation could stop me. In the street, in a classroom, in the car, in a bed: my sense of gravity would fail and I would fall. Vertigo they called it. I called it feeling dizzy.

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