I was taking a walk in the park, enjoying nature, when I decided to take a load off my feet. So I sat down on my favorite bench. I regarded it as my bench because I sat there so often. When out of nowhere a bloke sat down next to me.
He seemed to be in a conversation with himself.
After a few minutes of distraction, I said:
“Are you okay, fella?”
He turned to me and gave me a blank look.
“Oh, I didn’t see you there. Oh yes, I’m okay, I just hear voices and see ghosts.”
“Oh, you have hallucinations?”
“Oh no, they are real.”
I was taken aback. My bench mate continued:
“I’m a very important person, you see, so somebody is interviewing me.”
Delusions of Grandeur, I thought.
“I saw a women sawed in half once at the variety show.”
“I think that was an optical illusion.”
“No it wasn’t, I know, I saw it!”
I wondered how I could help this fella.
“People don’t take me seriously,” he interrupted my thoughts.
“It’s no wonder,” I said, “You are an unusual fella in that you have illusions and don’t realize they are illusions. Also, you have delusions and hallucinations. You have all three things that defy reality!”
“What’s wrong with that?” he said, happily.
“Back in olden times they took these things as signs of madness,” I said, trying to shake him loose from his demons.
He smiled and then started laughing.
“Okay, what’s the difference between the three?”
“Well, I’m no psychiatrist, but here’s what I think. An illusion is like when your eyes play tricks on you. Something that seems to be something it is not. A delusion is a false belief with no basis in reality. And, finally, a hallucination is the perception of something, a noise, smell, a sight, that is not there.”
“Well, now I know how I think,” he said, laughing
“You should see a psychiatrist.”
“No, I’m perfectly happy the way I am, thank you.”
And with that, he walked away mumbling to himself.