NPR Books has a fascinating interview with Oliver Sacks on his new book Hallucinations.
An excerpt on hallucinations during migraines:
…At least on two occasions, I’ve had a smell — in particular a smell of hot buttered toast — with a strong sense that I was about 3 years old, being put in a high chair, and about to be given hot buttered toast. A sort of olfactory hallucination often goes along with recollection in that sort of way. The first time I got that, I was in hospital and I went searching for the toast. The second time, I was driving on the Bronx River Parkway, where there was obviously no toast to be had.
You’ve already had a nice preview if you’ve read Sacks’ recent New Yorker piece “Altered States,” in which he recounts using pretty much every drug—not what you’d expect from a world-famous neurologist, although then again maybe it is.
Sacks has also written about the grievous injury he sustained during an encounter with a Norwegian bull and his experience with prosopagnosia, or “face blindness,” because apparently nothing about his life is not surprising and compelling.