Thursday, January 24, 2008

Monday, January 14, 2008

new link

I'm adding a link to Tracy's blog. She spends many months in Thailand and its bordering countries, and Japan, and her accounts of people she knows/meets, her lovely photos, and the her accounts of cultural info. make for good reading. Tracy teaches language some of the time, and travels/sightsees. You may enjoy following her travels over the coming months (she has just arrived there from Kalamazoo) or, reading her accounts from last year. The photos alone are worth a visit. A nice taste of warmth in the middle of winter. I followed her link to a guest house where she stays. The unbelievably low rates for accomodations made me rethink our winter get-away plans.

Friday, January 11, 2008

ambiguity-resolving machine"

Researchers say our brains aren't like cameras, or siesmic recorders. They don't directly input raw data and and faithfully reproduce it. The brain "analyzes and deconstructs" input, then reorganizes it, constructing its own reality based on the weft & woof of our experience, the associations and parameters the brain has acquired/developed. One writer calls the brain the "hypothesis generator" and cautions, "Sensation is an abstraction not a replication of the real world." Which explains a lot. Why we can never entirely understand each others' experiences. Why it's so impossibly difficult to get our sense of something down on the page. It's why we hunt around for some way to show on another what's going on in our brains for even a few moments. If our every sensation is, in fact abstract, it's no wonder we tumble ideas and images around and around in our brains, hunting for the combination, the order, the rhythms, that can paint that sensation in a way that is justours. A way that represents our hypothesis---our resolution or lack of it.
Here I am full circle, trying to wrap my brain around what I've read, trying to tell you how the information weaves itself into what I already think I know. And prose isn't doing it. I need a poem, for lack of anything better...