Thursday, March 22, 2007

Stews and Buds.

Well, the last few weeks I have done little except sit at this desk reading and making notes with occasional journeys to the gym. But today I reached a stage in my research where I could pause for a while so I am succumbing to the pull of the blog. There are still piles of unread books on my floor but lots of read ones too including my latest obsession which is THE HUMAN BRAIN COLOURING BOOK - which is exactly as described.

Every day I colour in a page and in the process learn how the brain works. The most surprising thing I've learnt so far is that along the neurons there are bud-like things called 'dendritic spines' and these buds are 'plastic' in that they can grow, change shape and size and probably (one thing I like about this science is there is so much that is not known for certain) disappear altogether. The spines allow communication between neurons and so this is the way we make connections and think.

The slightly dismal thing is that there seems to have been an unexpected frost in some parts of my brain and all these little spines (which once supported spines of their own) seem to have turned black and have dropped off through disuse. For instance Hodmandod Major asked me a very basic chemical question on the phone the other night and for a few minutes I couldn't remember the answer. Considering it was the sort of thing I used to know very well indeed it is a bit worrying...but then there are things I know now that I didn't used to know at all: how to make Jamie Oliver's Shin Stew, for instance. Which, now I think about it could well be of more use to me at the moment, all things considered.


Blogger Tammy Brierly said...

Color me a cure Clare. LOL Welcome back!

Thu Mar 22, 04:38:00 pm  
Blogger Marly Youmans said...

Yes, I have a touch of that frost as well!

Well, just use the really bright colors in your coloring book, and nobody will notice.

Thu Mar 22, 11:04:00 pm  
Blogger Lee said...

Pleased to see you back, since yours is one of my favourite blogs.

Fri Mar 23, 08:06:00 am  
Blogger Jan said...

It's sort of soothing when things are not "for certain". It means antything might happen. It means that even the Good Thing may actually become EXCELLENT.
Oh Dear! I am talking gibberish will be sorry you returned to blogggging!

Fri Mar 23, 04:58:00 pm  
Blogger Kay Cooke said...

Oh it is so good to have you back Clare with your wonderfully interesting spin on things and fascinating tidbits of info. The idea of colouring in a brain to learn more about it sounds such a wonderfully simple and effective way to take in info.

Sun Mar 25, 01:13:00 pm  

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