Skepticism

AI: Hypothetically speaking

It’s Friday and I’m feeling frisky, so I’m going to ask those hypothetical questions that can actually inspire quite interesting debate. For example, the first interaction I ever had with Rebecca, some four million years ago, was an argument over such a question, one I’d posed on the JREF forum. Just goes to show what can come from the smallest things :D

So, these being hypothetical questions, the rules are simple: assume that you have no choice but to pick one option, for whatever reason makes the most sense to you (gun to head, etc). You can answer all or just one, your call.

Would you rather live without sex or without alcohol?

Would you rather have x-ray vision or the ability to eat anything without gaining weight?

If you had to be either deaf or blind, which would you choose? (no offence meant to our deaf or blind readers).

The Afternoon Inquisition (or AI) is a question posed to you, the Skepchick community. Look for it to appear daily at 3pm ET.

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78 Comments

  1. -Without alcohol. I enjoy it on occasion, but it does tend to make me ill somewhat often due to a sensitive stomach. I love a good beer, but I can’t drink beer to get drunk — I’d barf long before I got a buzz. Besides, I prefer the sticky icky anyway. ;)

    -X-ray vision! Helllooo, that’d be awesome. I don’t mind being a bit chunky.

    -Hearing impaired. I have a couple hearing impaired friends, and I could deal much easier with that than being blind, I think. I’d rather be able to see where I’m going, and to be able to read, for instance. ASL is essentially a second language, and what with today’s technology (captioning, the internet, text messaging, Skype, etc.), it’s easier than ever to live in our world hearing impaired (not that it’s anywhere near perfect). It seems a lot more restrictive in our society to be blind. So much of our society is based on visuals.

    Random anecdote: I’ve been playing in a D’nD campaign that’s rather large (10 or 11 people, including the GM), and one of our players is completely deaf (he does wear a hearing aid to help with ambient noises). It’s been interesting! We’ve taken to having someone dictate the game to him via two laptops and wireless internet, and it seems to be working very well.

  2. 1. Give up alcohol. Easy one, I rarely drink as it is. Plus, I’ve never had a sex hang over. Now, bed spins…that’s another story.

    2. X-ray vision. It’s tempting to be perpetually thin, but I can’t help but think of all those poor people burried under wreckage in Haiti. If we only knew where live people were burried!

    Plus, you could find lost items, or treasure. Like when old people hide money in walls and forget it’s there.

    Or see if your boss really has a brain tumor or is just acting stupid again. Just saying.

    3. I’d be deaf. I am a visual learner, a huge reader, a comics lover and have more artwork than walls.

  3. I could live without ethanol… maybe after I DETOX !

    X-ray vision… i don’t appear to have a weight problem anymore.

    Since I make a large portion of my funds with photography…. quess I could live without hearing… guess I could get thousands for my music collection… oh, that’s right my wife would shoot me! Which would make all of the above Moot!

  4. That’s easy I don’t drink so bye bye alcohol… Of course I’ve really been living with out both of late… Crap did I type that out loud. SKIP AHEAD!!!! Nothing to see here.

    Based on the current statistics of how over weight this country’s getting I think X-ray vision could be more of curse, and there’s just so much great food out there. So bring on the tripple Whoppers!

    And my deaf and blind friend’s lawers will be contacting you for the grevious offensive nature of your last choice. But since he can’t see or hear what my opinion is I guess in a crunch I would go with Deaf. It would make sleeping through the endless drone of police and media helicopters that prowl my neighborhood easier.

  5. @Tanstaafl56: The hearing impaired can still listen to music, though they hear things differently than us. The last time I was in my friend’s car (I reference him above), he was like, “OOPS! I should turn this down to hearing levels!” because it was REALLY REALLY loud. LOL.

    He still enjoys music quite a lot.

  6. and I could always listen to it in my head… at least the portions of my library that i could remember, due to the amount of brain cells i have killed with ethanol….

    Dang Tracy, how did you manage to tie together three of my shortcomings?

  7. Alcohol and my sight seem like the easier choices for me. I don’t think i could handle the quiet. I go crazy just working in an office with a door. Now if i had to say would i rather have been born without one of the two, i’d be one board with marilove, but i know how much quiet is a killer to me now.
    But the 2nd question sounds like a trick question. I’d WAY rather eat whatever i want without gaining weight but i’m getting some serious vision in my head of not being able to exercise because i can’t gain weight if i lose it. I totally know that’s not what you meant, but clearly i think everyone is out there to trick me :)

  8. None of those are really difficult.

    Can live without alcohol, x-ray vision is worth the exercise.

    The vision vs hearing is harder, cause I love music.

    But if you take all three options together, you’d want to be able to See with X-Ray vision the one you’re having Sex with… That’d be just awesome. And freaky. But Awesome.

  9. 1. Without alcohol. Hmm though if I kept the alcohol can I still masturbate?

    2. X-Ray vision all the way!
    “Helllooo, that’d be awesome. I don’t mind being a bit chunky.” – @Marilove

    3. Deaf for sure! I’m way too visual to let that go. It is far easier to do the day to day things being deaf. Plus I have a deaf friends already and know some ASL too.

    One thing that would be hard to deal with however is the lack of Close Captions / Subtitles for online media. It’s very frustrating and I have taken to subtitling stuff for a friend of mine because it’s just not offered. Only Hulu seems to have a decent amount of subtitled online content.

  10. Would you rather live without sex or without alcohol?

    Without alcohol. Most people have to give it up at some point anyway.

    Would you rather have x-ray vision or the ability to eat anything without gaining weight?

    Nothing I can do can give me xray vision, but I can keep from gaining weight on my own. I’ll take the xray vision, please.

    If you had to be either deaf or blind, which would you choose?

    I think blind people have a vastly harder time getting along in the sighted world than deaf people do in the hearing world although neither is easy. I’ll take deafness.

  11. Would you rather live without sex or without alcohol?
    Since I don’t drink that’s an easy one, bye bye alcohol

    Would you rather have x-ray vision or the ability to eat anything without gaining weight?

    For the same reason Dave W notes, I’d opt for x-ray vision (though of all possible superpowers it’s really not the most useful)

    If you had to be either deaf or blind, which would you choose?

    This is probably the most difficult. I am a music addict and a very visual person, enjoying several hobbies that require vision. I would probably have to give up hearing rather than vision just on the pragmatic basis that again DaveW notes.

  12. @Malfeitor: You are so correct about their being a lack of captioned media online! My friend complains about this often. Netflix, for instance, DOES NOT CAPTION ITS STREAMING VIDEOS. There is no excuse.

    Good news, however, is that I believe Google and Youtube have partnered up to provide captioning, which I think is user submitted. Not 100% sure on this. I need to check it out.

    I am an insane typist, and have been tempted to caption stuff on a volunteer basis, but I lack the time (and motivation).

  13. I’m a mathematician (well a math grad student but same point) and our discipline is highly visual. I know mathematicians who have gone deaf and have managed to continue doing math just fine. But there’s tremendous trouble with people going blind and still being able to do math. While there is a historic example (Euler went blind towards the end of his life and it didn’t impact his productivity that much) it clearly is the much more difficult option for mathematicians. So I’ll go with going deaf.

  14. Would you rather live without sex or without alcohol?
    Since I’m married, I’ll go with alcohol. However, if I were still single it’d be a conundrum since it was the latter that provided the former.

    Would you rather have x-ray vision or the ability to eat anything without gaining weight?
    The eating one. Why would I want the world to look like those pictures I see on doctor shows? They aren’t even in color!

    If you had to be either deaf or blind, which would you choose?
    Deaf, hands down. Then I wouldn’t have to hear so many of my associates discussing their assanine beliefs. All I’d have to do is set up an email filter and I’d be set.

  15. 1) Definitely alcohol. I don’t drink that much anyways so it wouldn’t be that difficult.

    2) X-ray vision would be much more useful.

    3) (no offence meant to our deaf or blind readers).

    Wait, is Skepchicks available in Braille now?

  16. 1. Easy, at least for me, I don’t drink and I’m asex so I don’t have to “give up” either.

    2. Eat whatever I want. I so don’t want to see into other people’s lives… seriously, I enjoy my privacy.

    3. I’d choose deaf in a hot second. I used to attend a university with a deaf studies dept. and my roommates were deaf or interpreters so I’m just familiar with the community.

  17. Easily I’d give up alcohol rather than sex. And no question at all, I’d rather be able to eat anything and not gain weight over having x-ray vision (can you think of the things you’d see that should remain hidden? shudder!)
    The difficult one to answer is blind or deaf… gosh. Probably give up my hearing before sight, because then at least I could still read. But… can’t I just give up my taste instead? That way my ability to eat anything without gaining weight would be completely ironic, a la Twilight Zone.

  18. 1. Yeah, I already do without the alcohol. Easy choice there.

    2. I’m gonna go against the crowd on this one. I’m not really sure what X-ray vision would get me. And, would this really be the ability to see X-rays, or the ability to see through things (at will?). Anyway, I’m sure it would be fun and useful and all, but for a quality of life upgrade I think eating whatever I wanted whenever I wanted without having to worry about it would make me happier than X-ray vision.

    3. At first I thought this was easy and was going to go with deaf because of all the visual things I do in my life, despite liking music and all. Then I realized that if I’m deaf I can’t TALK to most people. That seems like it would be a huge blow, and I don’t think I’d be willing to part with it. So, blind it is.

  19. My vote for new questions:

    Would you rather give up alcohol or sweets (chocolate, pastries, ice cream, etc)?

    Would you give up sex or the internet?

    I’d give up alcohol and sex, before delicious foods and the internet =D

  20. I’d give up sex. I don’t really like getting drunk, but I’d miss beer, and I’m terrified that I’ll knock someone up one of these days, which is about the last thing I ever want.

    Screw X-Ray vision. I’m a chef, and I want to be able to eat my creations without any guilt.

    The last question’s really tough for me, because I don’t know if I could live without music. However, I also couldn’t do my job, read, or play video games without my vision, so I guess I’d have to go with being deaf.

  21. I would gladly give up alcohol if it meant I could have sex.
    x-ray vision.

    I’d rather be blind than deaf. I’d miss the ambient noise, and would be unable to sleep with out the sound of a fan in the room.

  22. @Berlzebub: Deaf, hands down. Then I wouldn’t have to hear so many of my associates discussing their assanine beliefs.

    Good point. I remember I woman I knew in college who had severe hearing loss, but could hear well enough with hearing aids. Whenever she wanted to concentrate she just took them out. She could work a crossword puzzle in the middle of a Metalica concert.

  23. I already live without alcohol so that’s easy to answer. Would much rather be able to eat what I want without gaining weight because I love to cook. I’m already a visual artist who’s partially blind so I’d rather be deaf IF it also includes fixing my shitty vision.

  24. I’d go without alcohol – I’ve had far too much in my life already, and am already cutting back massively.

    X-Ray vision – I’m not a foodie, so there’s no real desire to sit around eating anything. Food’s just stuff that keeps me alive. I’d be fine with a basic item that provided everything in one convenient snack.

    I’d keep my sight – All my favorite activities require seeing. @Gheiste: Yeah, I’d miss falling asleep with the fan too….

  25. Definitely no alcohol. I went without it for a long time as it was and I only drink on occasion now. When I was married to my ex I was forced to go without sex for two years. I’ll take the ‘no alcohol” thing any day.

    Xray vision or the ability to eat anything without gaining weight? I will SO take option two! I love food. More specifically, I love GOOD food. The blends of textures and flavors become a symphony of gastronomic experience! So…yeah. Food.

    Deaf or blind? I already wear hearing aides and I read lips fairly well already so losing the rest of my hearing wouldn’t be that much of a burden. The up side would be that I wouldn’t be awakened by hubby’s snoring. I WOULD miss opera and symphonies, but I think that being blind would be far more difficult for me to emotionally cope with.

  26. 1. Without alcohol. I’m not much of a drinker anyway and “live without sex” is not a phrase I comprehend.

    2. The eating one. Cheese, people. Cheeeeeese.

    3. Anyone who thinks being deaf would mean the end of communication (ChrisZ, really, you can’t talk to anyone?) doesn’t know much about deafness. Admittedly I’m biased, having worked in deaf education for years, but maintaining your independence as a blind person is much harder than as a deaf person.

  27. @Malfeitor: Ah-hah!

    A good idea would be to use what Google Voice does and “transcribe” the video, and leave it open for users to edit. This is probably what they want to do. Auto transcriptions aren’t perfect, but it would at least take care of the major work, and then users can come in and clean it up.

    This is a goood idea and they need to do it! Then you and I can go haywire making edits. :D

  28. If you had asked me 20 years ago to pick between sex and alcohol, I wouldn’t even had thought before answering “Gimme the sex!” Now? I’d miss it, but I think I would miss my Grey Goose more.

    As a teenager, I literally could eat anything in any quantity and never weighed an ounce over 185 (at 6’4″). I find I really miss that.

    Definitely would take being deaf over being blind. I would miss my music terribly, but I would miss my photography, reading, internet, etc. far, far more.

  29. @marilove: Deaf people don’t necessarily “eventually learn to read lips.” There is a perception out there that speechreading comes naturally to deaf people. This isn’t true. It’s something that must be studied and practiced, usually in conjunction with speech therapy, and only a small number ever get really good at it to the extent that they can get all or most of the information. Most people, even those skilled at speechreading, only get a limited percentage of spoken information from speechreading.

  30. Is the sex vs alcohol thing even a real question? So far the vote seems to be going 1 for “give up sex” vs approximately 12 bazillion for “give up booze”. Make that 13 bazillion now, because I’d also give up booze (yes I do get a bazillion votes).

    It’s like–alcohol can be fun and all that, but mostly it’s a fun amplifier, not a provider of fun all by itself. Wheras sex–well, yeah. It’s like asking “would you rather have a car or a turbocharger?” What am I going to do with a turbocharger without a car?

    As for XRAY vs perpetual bulimia without the puking, let this be a warning:

    X-Ray Vision!

    The final one is tough, though. I’m an avid reader and a lazy learner, so if I lost my vision, it might take years before my braille is up to speed. Also, how easy is it really to get books from not so well known authors in braille? Probably not very. Then again, if there’s any type of entertainment that takes up more of my brainspace than reading it’s music. Can’t I just have my penis chopped off and keep both my eyesight and my hearing?

  31. Would you rather live without sex or without alcohol?

    — Er, did ANYONE answer give up sex? The answer is clearly alcohol.

    Would you rather have x-ray vision or the ability to eat anything without gaining weight?

    — This one’s harder. X-ray vision, though, cause if you had it, you wouldn’t need to work much as people would pay you bucks just to see through things for them, so there’ d be plenty of time for the gym.

    If you had to be either deaf or blind, which would you choose?

    — What sadist came up with this one? I’d tell my captors that I refused to make such a horrible choice.

  32. Would you rather live without sex or without alcohol?
    Alcohol is easier to give up.

    Would you rather have x-ray vision or the ability to eat anything without gaining weight?
    Eat anything. If I had a special ability like that, I’d end up at a stupid airport looking at people’s things all day or something equally awful.

    If you had to be either deaf or blind, which would you choose?
    I’ll say blind, only because I know how hard being deaf can be. It isolates you from others much more than blindness does. Radio and audio recordings are pretty important to me, as is music.

  33. @JamieF: I’m sorry but I have to disagree with your comment about isolation. The deaf community thrives on interaction and connection; in fact Deaf culture is a collectivist one. It can be isolating if you are, say, the one deaf person in a place where no one is trying to communicate with you, sure. Or if you’ve been hearing your whole life and suddenly become deaf.

    If I seem to be hammering on this stuff, I apologize. As a former interpreter and teacher of deaf students, I’m what they call “third culture,” and tired of stereotypes about the community. Of course I understand this question is meant to examine what a hearing or sighted person would feel about losing one of those senses, but it’s hard for me not to correct some misapprehensions about the extraordinarily social deaf community.

  34. Without alcohol, certainly. I’d miss it but not much.

    I’d rather have the ability to eat anything without gaining weight. Besides, I’ll need all that energy for all the sex I’ll be having with no alcohol.

    Deaf – as I’d be having tons and tons of sex, I’m rather vociferous and not being able to hear myself may be a plus at that point.

  35. It figures my first post would be on something like this.

    I’d give up sex. This is mostly because I’m asexual, and sex has about the same appeal to me as does driving a nail through my foot. On the other hand, I enjoy the occasional drink. So the choice here is pretty easy.

    I think I’d rather be deaf than blind, but I’d be suicidally depressed either way. I’m very attached to my five senses, thank you very much.

    And I’ll be honest, I’d prefer the ability to eat anything without gaining wait. X-ray vision would be pretty cool, but I’d get a lot more pleasure out of scarfing down mountains of chocolate-dipped bacon than seeing what someone’s got in their safety deposit box.

  36. I would rather die in a pit of hornets and razor wire than give up my wine. Eating whatever, whenever isn’t that tempting to me because I’m more interested in drinking whatever, whenever — which I already do. And might be doing now.

  37. Sex or Booze?
    Assuming that you define sex as involving 2 or more people in the same room at the same time.
    Give me a good Single Malt Scotch and my imagination any time.

    X-Ray Vision or No Weight Gain?
    No contest! Hello peanut butter and chocolate syrup sandwiches!

    Blindness or Deafness?
    Sort of an unfair question as I am partially deaf already (approx 70% loss). I think I would keep the deafness since I love reading and seeing wonderful things!

  38. @ZenMonkey: It may be a stereotype, but it certainly happens. Anyone’s isolation depends on the support available. In my experience I’ve seen social groups – some of them very exclusive to new people and the hearing. Social within, and not without.

    You’re right, it’s not everyone’s experience by any means. Just looking at the social factor, I would not want to be deaf in my current location and situation. Don’t want to get into personals, but it would not be lovely at all.

  39. I’d lose alcohol, I like to drink but there are better ways to be less than sober, plus not being able to have sex would be kind of shitty.
    I already have a pretty bitchin’ metabolism so I think I’d go with x-ray vision providing I can choose when I use it.
    I’m going to have to side with the majority on this one and choose deaf over blind. I enjoy my sight too much to give it up. Plus I can easily get my hearing back if I marry the robot devil.

  40. 1. If I answer sex do I get a caring thoughful partner who doesn’t demand that I have kids and give up family and is loving and reciprocating? If so booze. But if I have to keep my current sex life? No way. Booze all the way.

    2. If like in #1 I get to magically look super thin or even if my current working out makes me loose weight I’d totally take the food. No you know what the food thing either way. The XRay vision isn’t clear. Is it all the time? Do I keep my regular vision? Is it something I’ve had all the time? Do I get to control the strength of the xrays?

    3. Again to many variables.

    Also I need another drink. Or a really good lay.

  41. 1. Sex over alcohol anyday. In fact, I’m having sex as I type.

    2. This is a close one, but since I could soon have xray vision by simply taking a job at an airport, I’ll taking the eating power.

    3. Easy. Vision over hearing. Because one cannot hear a boob.

    :)

  42. 1. I wouldn’t really be giving up either as it is, but throw out the alcohol. I can’t stand the stuff, and there’s got to be a woman out there somewhere who doesn’t see me as a brother.

    2. I’ll take the x-ray vision. Even if I’m not getting any I can at least look. I will miss the neverending deserts.

    3. A really tough one, but I’ll keep my sight. Photography is my main hobby, and I love reading. I will miss the birds songs, the Skeptics Guide, etc.

  43. 1) I’d go without alcohol. I’m not a fan of it to begin with.

    2) I’d take the ability to eat anything I wanted without gaining weight. Not that I really care about it but I have a feeling that if I had X-ray vision I’d end up poking my eyes out which leads me to #3.

    3) Much rather be deaf. Most of what I enjoy in life involves me being able to see, I can go without music and can learn sign language.

  44. I’d rather give up alcohol over sex, but giving up alcohol might result in giving up both.

    Would need the not get fat thing to compinsate for the no alcohol thing above [Comfort food would now drown my sorrows].

    How could I possible live without seeing all those hot Skepchicks out there!

  45. I don’t drink so giving up alcohol is an easy choice.

    Its rare that I need to see through things, but food is my principal vice, so not gaining weight would be great for me.

    Deafness over Blindness no question. As Marilove said you can learn to read lips, you can’t learn to hear pictures. Giving up podcasts would suck, but still better than the alternative.

  46. I don’t drink and my sex life isn’t great due to constantly being too busy or too ill or both, but I’d still rather retain the option for sex. I don’t even do alcohol in food, so, really it’s an easy choice.

    If by not gaining weight that includes none of the other potential bad health effects of eating anything (ie it won’t raise my blood sugar), then I’d take that. Plus x-ray vision could be creepy. Now if the choice was Wolverine-style regen, I’d totally take that and I could pig out anyway!

    I don’t have great vision and I have an off-and-on hearing problem, but I think I could function deaf better than blind. I already need CC when I watch TV, and it’s a major pain in the ass that our DVR software doesn’t record the CC band. Gah.

  47. Alcohol was never my drug of choice, so I’ll keep sex.

    X-ray vision could be useful and not just voyeuristic, and I seem to do OK with my weight, so bring on the x-ray vision.

    Gotta be able to see to watch porn on the Intertubes, and I don’t know how much erotic literature is available on tape or CD, so I’ll take deafness.

  48. I’ll give up alcohol. Masturbation counts as sex, right?

    I can already eat whatever I want without gaining weight. There’s no little print about gaining weight no matter how little you eat, right? X-ray vision it is.

    Having a long range surveilance system with a decent resolution is important. Give me deafness. I mean, just imagine trying to find your glasses when you’re blind? (Yes, I realised the absurdity of the example before typing it.)

  49. I rarely drink alcohol anyway, so that’s a no-brainer.

    I can stay thin(ish) and eat whatever I like as its is with no special powers by simply exercising enough, but there’s nothing I can do to see through walls, so I’d definitley choose the X-Ray vision.

    The last question kinda depends. Do I keep what I got from the previous two questions? X-Ray vision does me no good if I’m blind, obviously. So if I get the X-Ray Vision, I pretty much have to choose deafness. If the questions are independent of each other, despite being a visually oriented guy, I think I’ll go with the blindness. I work with a few blind people and I know very little about deafness, so my choice may be ill informed.

  50. All of these decisions have been made for me already.

    “Would you rather live without sex or without alcohol?”

    I drink a couple of times a week BECAUSE living without sex seems to be my life for the last few years.

    “Would you rather have x-ray vision or the ability to eat anything without gaining weight?”

    I’m skeptical x-ray vision would ever be possible so I’d rather eat without gaining weight. Then maybe my above problem would be solved.

    “If you had to be either deaf or blind, which would you choose?”

    I’m an audio editor and unfortunately I need both senses to do my work. Can I give up a different one? Taste maybe? Oh fine, I’ll give up hearing, that way I can still drive.

  51. The sex goes. It isn’t compatible with my yearning to become a Jedi anyway (and now you think alcohol isn’t either, but what could be more awesome than a Jedi/ pirate?)

    With all the powers that come through wielding the force, x-ray vison seems rare and would be my choice. (never heard of a fat Jedi anyway). On the other hand: Jedi’s don’t really need eyesight…

    …wich leads to me rather beeing blind than deaf. I just couldn’t live without music!

  52. I’m now living without alcohol because of sex. Forget sex. I want the booze!

    X-ray vision? To what? Diagnose broken toes without film? Boring! And kind of ewww… I’ll take the cheese!

    And I know I’d still be able to drive if I were deaf, and I could still read the internets, but I think I’d still choose being blonde over being deaf. I think I’d actually look quite nice with light hair.

  53. Would you rather live without sex or without alcohol? Alcohol – I rarely drink so it wouldn’t be missed. I’d rather get drunk off sex.

    Would you rather have x-ray vision or the ability to eat anything without gaining weight? Eat – Other than working as a doctor or a spy, what’s the real benefit of x-ray vision? Being able to eat anything would be more fun as I’d be tempted to try more new things.

    If you had to be either deaf or blind, which would you choose? Deaf – I practically live in silence and love it. I do love certain sounds like bird song, wind in the trees, waves on shore or rushing brook; but the other sounds of every day life I could do without. Since I hate talking on the phone – love texting – it’s the perfect excuse to avoid that. I did study sign language many, many years ago and could sign with a deaf friend. It would be easy to pick that back up if necessary.

  54. OK. So, McGuffin. Given that, if someone offered me these choices I’d probably walk away, suspicious of some sort of Monkey’s Paw situation, where what you choose isn’t necessarily what you get. Assuming the choices are clearly defined, I’ll say:
    1. If I can have sex the way I drink alcohol (with whomever and whenever I want) then I’ll take sex. I love alcohol, good wine, good booze, mixing cocktails, and socializing over said drinks, having a good stiff drink when I get home from work, etc. If, however, I was given the ability to have sex as a replacement for all those situations, and with the same frequency, I’d take it. I’d never see my family again, though. I’m not going to have sex with any of them and I can’t handle them without alcohol.
    2. I love food, I love to cook, I love to eat. However, I see this as a choice between something I’ve already come to terms with and something no one else has. Since I don’t have to give up anything I have already if I choose x ray vision, (and I’m assuming this is the Superman type, only when you want it and not necessarily a fuzzy black and white bones only type of vision) I’ll take the vision. If I was the only one with this ability I could probably carve a niche as some sort of highly paid consultant for engineering, security, and emergency medical situations.
    3. I would hate to give up hearing, but I do believe it’s easier to be independent as a deaf person than a blind person, or at least I think it would require less dramatic changes to my life. So, I’ll keep my vision.

  55. Would you rather live without sex or without alcohol?
    Alcohol. Definitely. I could give up sex about as easily as I could give up breathing.

    Would you rather have x-ray vision or the ability to eat anything without gaining weight?
    The ability to eat anything without gaining weight. I LOOOOVE eating! And seeing through people’s clothes would probably get boring after a while.

    If you had to be either deaf or blind, which would you choose?
    This one surprised me, but I would chose to be deaf, despite the fact that I’m a musician. There is so much beauty to be seen in this world.

  56. 1. I am already living without sex (sigh), so I can’t give up alcohol.

    2. I would rather be able to eat anything and not gain weight than to have x-ray vision.

    3. I would rather be deaf than blind because I could still enjoy movies and books if I were deaf.

  57. There are plenty of other ways of getting high, if needed. Sex stays.

    X-ray vision, as has been stated, because it’s something I can’t have in the normal course of things. I could be a superhero. I can imagine a scene where eating without gaining weight saves the day, but since it involves eating my way out of something larger than myself, I’d prefer not to.

    I’d rather be deaf than blind, in the normal course of things. I’m not going to twist that into “hearing impaired” because it wasn’t in the question, either. Except in this hypothetical, I’d rather be blind. Because I’ve got x-ray vision. I don’t care if everything looks like a trailer for Predator 4. I could have my cake and eat it (apologies to question 2)

  58. ooh.. had to respond to this one-

    1) I would definitely give up alcohol.

    2) I’d rather have x-ray vision- but only if I can use it at will. Might be hard to watch TV if all I can see are the wires.

    3) And since I am already Deaf, I’ll go with being deaf. Or, does that negate the whole hypothetical situation for me?

    (BTW- there is a program developed for youtube that is supposed to add captions to videos using some kind of voice recognition software. You can google it to find more info.

    In general, laws about access to digital media are not keeping pace with changing technology. But Google’s caption program is a good step forward.)

  59. Things to keep: Sex, the ability to drown in chocolate without raising my blood glucose to “dead”, and my eyesight.

    The only alcohol I find irresistible is a very good champagne; I don’t want x-ray vision [think of how careful you’d have to be around people who are close to you, lest you irradiate them unintentionally]; and, as much as I love music, I’d go mad if I couldn’t read.

  60. Giving up alcohol wouldn’t get me laid. It looks like getting a sex life back is unlikely to happen any time in the foreseeable future for me, so I’ll keep the alcohol.

    I would do just about anything to have the ability to eat what I like without weight gain/guilt, including passing on xray vision with no hesitation. Pizza for dinner every day… Yeah.

    The last question is the only one that’s hard for me though. There are a lot of things to consider, many of which would be specific to my own situation. I think that learning is likely to be much harder without sight though, and learning is crucial to me. So I will choose deafness, but I’m glad this is a choice I don’t need to make.

  61. life without sex… what’s the point?
    anyway, if i needed drugs there are a plethora of alternatives.

    i can accept my weight. x-ray vision is win. and anyway, if it mattered that much you could use it to make the money for liposuction.

    losing either sense seems so lonely. but i’m a musician, and i need to hear… i can keep the x-ray vision, right?

  62. 1. Seriously? Give up sex? Are you high? I could not give up sex, though my current “dry” spell has been so long it feels that way. So alcohol is out. Just don’t take my ganja!

    2. Eat what I want without gaining weight? Yes please! You didn’t mention the possibility of getting diabetes, hypertension or heart disease, tho. I’ll have to assume these are also not a factor. If that’s the case, then bring on the cheese!

    3. I’d probably go with deaf on this one, because as has been siad, music can still be appreciated by the deaf and I could still drive and ogle the chicks. ;-)

  63. I’d rather do without alcohol than sex. Ironically, if I was to do without sex, I’d have to have more alcohol to compensate.

    I’d rather have x-ray vision than the ability to eat anything without gaining wait. I apparently already have that ability, so that loophole gives me both.

    I’d rather be deaf. There are tons more medical procedures for correcting deafness than for curing blindness, and even if it was permanent, the worst part about it would be not being able to listen to music (and yes, that is rather a big deal for me). On the other hand, I can already lip-read and I kind of like the idea of simply closing my eyes to shut up someone who is really annoying me :)

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