Prosopagnosia, or face blindness, is a condition that prevents people who have it from remembering faces. They can see faces and the individual features just fine.....but they just can't recall them.
The first time I heard of this was on an episode of Radiolab and was astounded to learn one of my favorite artists, Chuck Close, who is known for his larger than life size PORTRAITS, is profoundly face blind.
I am no where near Chuck's level, but I am a portrait artist and I just couldn't wrap my head around this. How in the hell can he paint these amazing faces and not even recognize the people in the paintings? He explained that he treated the face like a landscape. If the person were to turn their head a little, it's a whole new face to him.
So, when I came across this book I was very excited.
Heather writes about her life growing up not knowing she has face blindness. She just thinks she's crazy. Her mom is undiagnosed schizophrenic and her dad is an alcoholic cross dresser. Her life is a bit chaotic to say the least.
It isn't until she is well into adulthood before she finds out that what her problem is Prosopagnosia. It is very hard for me to believe that a person could go through life without figuring out that "hey, I don't remember peoples faces". But this was the case for Heather. That's just nuts.
You Don't Look Like Anyone I Know is an interesting book, a good book worth a read, but I wasn't a huge fan of the writing style.
Another famous face blind person....Kurt Vonnegut