Date: Thu, 24 Jan 2002

Dear Mister W.,

I remember when I was a little boy in short trousers, being taught that we humans have but five senses. Later, as a moody teen, I learned that there might be a mystical, magical, mysterious sixth sense.

As an adult, I have frequently experienced an utterly pleasant sense- the Sense Of Wonder. I cannot help but feel it must be connected to you somehow. Could you please tell me- is the Sense Of Wonder the mystical sixth sense, or does it exist on yet another plane of tantric bliss?

Trudi Styler.


Dear Stung,

I'm flattered that you feel your pleasant sensations are connected with me, and I hope you won't press charges.

The Sense of Wonder is, however, not the sixth sense. Not by a long chalk. Here's how it breaks down:

The 1st five senses are touch, taste, sight, smell and hearing - the ingredients for sex.

The 6th sense is vague impressions of mystical otherness brought on by childhood fevers.

The 7th sense is knowing you came into the room for a reason, but can't remember it now.

The 8th sense is frisky.

The 9th sense is remembering that you had a dream that this was going to happen.

The 10th sense is the sense you should stop, but you're not going to.

The 11th sense is the feeling there were fish here earlier.

The 12th sense is Python appreciation.

The 13th sense is something French.

The 14th sense is twitchy.

The 15th sense is what keeps you under the covers.

The 16th sense is certainty everyone else in the room is an idiot.

The 17th sense is the urge to fuck the universe.

The 18th sense is the sense you shouldn't have said that out loud.

The 19th sense is knowing they're out there somewhere, still.

The 20th sense is that there's more.

The 21st sense is the sense that cannot be spoken of.

The 22nd sense is irrational exuberance about the all the possibilities inherent in this universe, or "pathological optimism."

The 23rd sense is the Sense of Wonder.

What's great about it is that you can stimulate it as much as you want and you'll never go blind. Good luck with the bliss.