Hardly a day passes that my dear husband doesn’t ask me what he can pick up for me at the grocery store. He likes shopping. I hate shopping. In fact, I hate everything to do with food, even the eating of it. But that’s beside the point. One must still eat to stay alive, though I’m currently working on technology that…oops, that’s kind of a trade secret. Back to the shopping. My husband asks me what I need at the store. My automatic response is generally a new brain. I figure, since he has a gentle touch, that he could be the one to perform the transplant. Sadly, every time, I’m disappointed by the lack of good brains sold at the local Supermart. Dear Husband tends to come home with dog food, butter, potatoes, wine, and other amenities to keep my existing brain in a serotonin-stimulation state. No, I don’t eat dog food, but I suddenly feel very happy when my puppy is happy. This is what’s known as the Happy Puppy Effect for maintaining brain stasis while awaiting the necessary transplant.
Now, science has offered up a new plan: The Entire Head Transplant. For this to be possible, the surgeon must simply make a clean cut of the head. According to the scientist Canavero, “It is this ‘clean cut’ [sic] the key to spinal cord fusion, in that it allows proximally severed axons to be ‘fused’ with their distal counterparts.” After the clean cut, a doctor simply needs some polyethylene glycol in order to re-fuse the spinal cord, and the new person is in business. The heart can be restarted, its blood pumped to the new head.
This, my friends, is my dream come true. In a few years, I can have a new head to replace my old head. This means I should begin searching for the head I’d like; it might be best if I found a partner who wanted to swap his or her old head for mine–maybe somebody who’s just crazy enough not to dwell on my head’s flaws. Of course, attached to somebody else, my head might not suffer from the same lunacy because another body’s blood would be feeding it. Still, though, the potential head swapper would have to look at it as a purchase more permanent than an old car. My head’s not so damaged, but it isn’t young either. Being a ditzy female has some advantages in the world, with or without youth; the basic bone structure surrounding the brain is quite elegantly small, forming good cheekbones, and leaving only a rather longish nose to contend with.
I can’t imagine going through this procedure without agreeing to make a head swap deal with an honest individual. How else would I honestly come by a head for my hapless body? Organ donations are one thing. I know many people who have donated their brains to science, and there are many more walking around whom I suspect have done the same, if their vacuous smiles are any indication. But donating entire bodies and heads is another matter altogether. Would there be a body or head donating station? If so, how would it be determined whether a person was donating a body or head? It has occurred to me that if I swapped heads with another person, I would essentially be donating my body at that point, while my old head would be attached to somebody else’s, and I would be stuck forever in my own eternal sunshine.
Right now, what I know is this: I can’t comprehend this science. I can’t comprehend it with this head. And if I had somebody else’s, I would be somebody else and wouldn’t be conscious of understanding it, either. This thought process could be an endless cycle. I wish somebody would make it stop. Husband? Dear one? If you’re going to the store, would you please pick me up a new brain? I don’t think I can cope with a head swap until I have somebody else’s brain.