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Sound Effect, Episode 18: The Five Senses Myth

A prosthetic eye sits and dries on a stand
Gabriel Spitzer
Todd Cranmore, an ocularist, hand-paints an iris for his brother Tim's prosthetic eye.

"Sound Effect" is your weekly tour of ideas, inspired by the place we live. The show is hosted by KNKX's Gabriel Spitzer. Each week's show explores a different theme, and this week, we try to make sense of our senses.

You may have learned about the five senses in school but Dr. Eric Chudler is here to shed light on some of the many other lesser known senses. He also politely explains to Gabriel why he won't be acquiring "spider sense" any time soon.

Credit Gabriel Spitzer / KPLU
Todd Cranmore custom-paints a prosthetic eye for his brother Tim.

Next we visit touch. Prosthetic hands can cost thousands of dollars but advances in 3D printing have made many different prosthetics available for less than the cost of dinner and a movie. Jennifer Wing brings us the story of how these prosthetic hands have given one man a sense of determination.

When it comes to sight, one Washington family has seen it all. family We'll learn about a Kirkland clan in the business of making eyes and hear about the accident 40 years ago that set it into motion.

KNKX’s Ed Ronco brings us a story about how one man’s search for a casual sense of peace and quiet turned into a monthly event that has a room at the Sorrento Hotel, brimming with people not speaking a word to each other.

Joining us for this week’s news panel are Luke Timmerman, Emily Parkhurst and Joanne Silberner.