Prancing about the Web on Xmas Day

I just had a go at the Goddess Quiz that Kat Christensen blogged about some time ago [http://askatknits.wordpress.com/2008/11/16/rising-to-meet-current-challenges-as-one-nation/]  :http://www.bellaonline.com/misc/quiz/goddess/index.asp

Apparently, after answering 7 constrained queries (ONLY!!) I am a PERSEPHONE

Persephone

Persephone

My companion Animal: Bear; My Colour: Green

“Persephone is the goddess of the harvest, and the cycles of nature. She begins her life as a wild and impetuous maiden, running off whenever she wishes. She is the daughter of Demeter, goddess of nature, of harvests and the cycle of nature.

Persephone, wild child, decides to run off with Hades, god of the underworld. After a while she realizes the underworld is not where she wishes to live. Hades wants to keep her for himself in his dark home. Persephone’s mom argues with Hades but Hades refuses to budge. Finally, Demeter brings end to fertility, and Hades gives in and releases his bride. Persephone still has to return to Hades for a portion of each year to honor the marriage. This is when winter comes to the world.

Persephone represents the cycles of life, the fairness and beauty of nature, the fact that winter comes each year but that spring is always soon to follow.”

Hmm- make of that what you will- I haven’t got my Freudian or Jungian hat on either, so will let it rest!

I’ve also been randomly exploring a few science news sites I came across purely by accident and found some good stuff on autism research. I was doing some quite nifty research on autism for my PhD many years ago, some of which was quite revolutionary, it now turns out. However, I became depressed and discouraged and gave up with only a few chapters to finish. Some of the stuff I found today confirms what I was discovering about cues being much more salient when moving than when stationary, especially facial expressions, eg: Mother Is Just Another Face In The Crowd To Autistic Children http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/04/010418072256.htm

I know many people will scoff at this, but the article and I are both referring to classic autistic kids, not ones with special “islets of ability”. I used to notice that autistic kids didn’t recognise their mums in a new outfit and thought it was some sort of evidence that they weren’t using her face or smell as a cue. If you’re intrigued- there were a lot more associated articles at that site on Science Daily. In my history around autism, there was this dear old psychologist bloke, Neal O’Connor who was quite encouraging about my work, and also Lorna Wing- but they were both in the UK when they weren’t dropping in for a flying conference visit and I was here in Australia. You should look them up if you’re interested in autism, language and cognition- they’re bl**dy famous!

I probably drifted into this line of Webbing because Spotrick gave me a great Oliver Sacks book for Christmas, “Musicophilia. Tales of Musc and the Brain”

Musicophilia by Oliver Sacks

Musicophilia by Oliver Sacks

Spotrick knows I love reading about things concerning the brain, neurology and cognition. Skimming the book brought to light various tales of unusual abilities and inabilities, like autistic musical geniuses. Incidentally-, also a chapter about some kids with Williams Syndrome who seem to mostly have unusual musical sense and social/verbal abillity which seems completely opposed to autism! My braiin goes wild thinking about the different processing steps needed to produce such weird combinations of thinking!!

Spotrick also gave me

Musicophilia by Oliver Sacks

which should rev up my brain for more study in 2009- hopefully! I used to subscribe to Scientific American and do all the Martin Gardner puzzles until SciAm got so technical around 1974 that I couldn’t read the articles any more! Now it’s just cute stuff like hexaflexagons that lure me into reading it!

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2 thoughts on “Prancing about the Web on Xmas Day

  1. Oh oh… now i begin to appreciate why I feel some sort of unspoken connection with you… both our minds enjoy the challenge of new thinking! Yay! Enjoy those books and fresh insights into your own psyche this new year 🙂

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