Lately I’ve been pondering, of all things, bloodborne pathogens and what are generally known as “universal precautions”. It’s come up because of trainings at work, so it’s not entirely my odd brain.
(If you’re not familiar with this, eHow has a good quick overview.)
My odd brain, however, is interested in what other things we could contract from other people’s blood. Why does it always have to be nasty stuff like hepatitis and AIDS?
Why can’t we contract antibodies to everything the other person has fought off? (“Blood from someone who’s had all of this year’s colds and flu: $50”)
Why can’t we contract genetic traits? (“Tall: $30. Good skin: $75. High metabolism: $150. Thick eyelashes: $20”)
Why can’t we contract bits of personality and neurological abilities? (“Olfactory synaesthesia: $50. Perfect pitch: $75. Dreaming in color: $20”)
Can you imagine the craziness of a world where you could contract artistic creativity…and depression? Where plastic surgery was outdated but changing your appearance was as easy as getting blood from a shop–or a friend? Where all the traits and abilities of anyone in the world could parade through your body?
Today’s challenge: Imagine a society where bloodborne abilities are being shared. Write a character who jumps into this lifestyle and a character who has reservations. What does each one keep or gain? What pitfalls and barriers does each experience? How does your personal view on this influence your characters’ experience?