Tuesday 23 April 2024

The Brain.

What a fascinating organ it is.   And for all the research I understand there is still so much we don't know about it.

Can you stop your brain from thinking?   Is that what meditation is all about?   I ask this because I find it impossible not to think.   It would be so good if, when I wake at 4am I could just relax in my snug warm bed and lay there thinking about absolutely nothing.   Can some people do this or is everyone like me? 

I woke up at four this morning; woke up thinking about the days of the week in French.   Why?   And as I lay there going through them over and over again I could only think of six!   Eventually I drifted off to sleep again.   Half way through eating my fruity breakfast a word popped into my head from nowhere.........Mercredi!!!

So please dear readers put me out if my misery.  a) have I got them right?  b) are they in the right order? and c) have I spelt them correctly?  Can't be bothered to look them up myself (truthfully that should read (can't remember how):

Lundi, Mardi, Mercredi, Jeudi, Vendredi, Samedi, Dimanche.

But, joking apart, isn't it a fascinating organ?  The older I get the more words (especially names of people, places and things) escape me at the moment I want them.  Long after I have stopped searching for the word I want, the old brain will be working  on it and will suddenly (no roll of drums, no fanfare) pop it into my mind.   Sadly by that time I might have forgotten what I wanted it for.

And to end - a rather daft connection, but one that fascinates me every morning.

Opposite my window is a small, smart red mail box on a black metal stalk.    On their morning walkies every male dog in the vicinity stops at that stalk for the same purpose.   It goes like  this:

Stop (and refuse to walk on however taut the lead goes):

Sniff from top to bottom (if it is a labrador, or as far up as possible if a chi hua hua),

Raise appropriate hind leg.

Pee for as long as possble.

Is this instinct?  Does the brain control instinct or is instinct inate in us all?   The dog has no words (except the few he/she learns which are to their advantage: Walkies, Tea Time,) so what makes them do this every single day?  Yes, I know they are covering up - or trying to - every drenching which  has preceded theirs that morning in order to attract every passing bitch.  But without words they can't think ' I fancy that beautiful Basset Hound' can they?

I'll stop there.   Sex comes into everything sooner or later doesn't it?

Have a nice day.   And do pop over to Si's 'Careering Through Nature' to view his superb photographs of Spring flowers - especially that cheeky long-stalked dandelion who pops up to almost steal the show from those dark blue Bluebells.   Does it know that yellow is the complementary colour to blue?  Don't let's go down that route.



Sue in Suffolk said...

One of the few things remembered from 5 years of French lessons are the days of the week and you have them spot on.
The Months of the year are easy too as they are much like English - other than that not a lot has stayed in my brain since 1971 when I failed French O level!

thelma said...

The black post is the 'talking post' as far as the dogs are concerned. Who has been through this morning to pee. Is that pretty bitch on heat yet maybe? Has Charlie, Sam or James passed this way yet. It is a dog's news place that black post - don't move it...

Anonymous said...

We call that post pee mail. Gigi

Anonymous said...

I startled my husband when I squealed with delight "Pat has a post up this morning!!!" Ah yes, the brain. Having a college degree in psychology, this has long been of interest to me. I have read many books over the years about the subject and continue to do so. I will be 66 this week and I find that lately I think about the brain's functions in a different way. I feel as if I have much more data stored there than ever before. So much so that it takes longer for me to retrieve an answer. As some call this the beginnings of dementia, I prefer to think of it as living a long life with many experiences. I hope you have a good day, Pat with several Kit-Kats! - Jackie

Ellen D. said...

Such a clever post today, Pat! I think Thelma has the right idea about the black post - just dogs checking in each day.
I think of the brain as a computer hard drive. I can sing the lyrics to so many old songs but sometimes can't remember what I was talking about a minute before. So my hard drive is full and it takes longer to process some things... like that circle on the computer screen that goes round and round when it is loading slowly. :)

Debby said...

What a fun post. The brain is fascinating. I love that it whirs away in the night while we sleep. My husband and I are both people who fall asleep trying to figure something out and wake up with the answer in our minds. It reminds me of the shoemaker's elves.

Diaday said...

Ahhh, the good ole pee mail! Now when I wake up at night I will be thinking about the French and Spanish days of the week and their similarities and wherever else this will take me. The brain is fascinating.

Barbara Anne said...

What a delightful post, Pat! I am reminded of the quote from the movie 'Becket' or was it "A Man for all Seasons"?? Anyway, it is "He's been wining and wenching all night, but he's always thinking." You are not alone in having delayed answers pop up from the depths and far too late to be of use.

Here is a wonderful 2 ingredient recipe to share for a 9"x13" greased pan, an Angel Food cake mix, and a 20oz can of crushed pineapple with juice. Empty the cake mix into a large (not huge) bowl, dump the pineapple and juice in, and stir well. Be aware that the mixture will be gray and foamy. Pour into your prepared pan and bake at 350*F (177*C) for 25 to 30 minutes, until top is springy and golden brown. Serve with whipped cream or Cool Whip. Just before baking you can sprinkle coconut over the top and there are other variations that can be found on-line. It is scrumptious and so very quick and easy!


Ruta M. said...

I love your comments on life. I'm 67 and often lose a name but now I simply say "I can't remember your name." whereupon half the group of people I'm with will invariably say they've forgotten everybody's name too. I once heard a doctor say that if you know you can't remember things then that's just old age/ too many things in the brain and not dementia. I found that quite comforting. We moved to Wales three years ago and hopefully my attempts to learn Welsh are helping to create more pathways in my brain.

hart said...

I have a friend who says of his present memory, "No same day service."

Tasker Dunham said...

This will fill your brain. To the tune of The Camptown Ladies (thanks to our daughter).
Lundi, Mardi, Mercredi,
Jeudi, Jeudi,
Lundi, Mardi, Mercredi,
Jeudi, Vendredi,
Samedi, Dimanche,
Samedi, Dimanche,
Lundi, Mardi, Mercredi,
Jeudi, Vendredi.

Joanne Noragon said...

I never saw a dog with a small bladder.

Red said...

It's standard procedure for us elderly that we can't think of a particular word at a certain time. It bugs the hell out of you but it is what it is.

LouC said...

Well, Pat, if anyone learns to turn the brain off I’d like to know, too. The closest I get is when doing my Fitbit steps indoors as weather often dictates. But I have to really concentrate on saying some saying outload the whole time to keep my focus-mostly. Once in bed nothing seems to help no matter how tired I am. It usually hits me between 3:30 and 3:30 a.m. I usually fight it as long as I can but mostly after an hour or so pull out the iPad and do a puzzle or two or three or look up what is refusing to leave my mind in peace. Ah well, at least I’m retired and alone now and don’t keep anyone else awake. The brain is one of our biggest mysteries.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Sue - sme here. I have just (at 3am) recited the months of the year in French. I too failed French |O Level - I do remember Bonjour Mademoiselle and je m'appelle Colette but that is about it.

Thelma - Love your explanation - shall never look at the post in the sameway again/

Cro Magnon said...

Being a French speaker, I often find myself thinking in French. I once even spoke to an English supermarket check-out girl in French, completely unaware that I was using the wrong language.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Cro that's when you know you are fluent.

Thanks to you all.

Anonymous said...

I've always thought the concept of humans and animals voluntarily laying down and becoming unconscious to have batteries recharged to function properly, is fascinating. Like connecting the mobile phone onto the charger each night.
We have no choice do we! ...blissful in a snuggly bed but so many are vulnerable to circumstance.
On a lighter note, in my family we call temporary word losses or slip-ups 'brain farts'.
Enjoyed your post.- Pam.

Derek Faulkner said...

Thankfully, us males have other ways of attracting the passing females, not sure that peeing up any post outside would appeal to my neighbours, that was something I normally did on the way home from the pub.

Heather said...

I suspect that your brain is functioning perfectly, and as far as I can remember the days of the week are as you listed. I am constantly amazed by the strange and diverse thoughts that pop into my head, and often wonder why! I do think that relaxation and meditation help to calm the brain and lessen stress.

Sue said...

You have the days of week just perfect. I failed my French Oral exam miserably. Partly I suspect because I called a turkey a 'grand oiseau' ... and it went downhill from there when I got a case of the giggles.

What a great blog post, you've got us all thinking and therefore using our brains. :-)

Salty Pumpkin Studio said...

The brain is fascinating.
Sometimes the word I want doesn't show up for a few weeks, especially if it is somebody's name.

Anonymous said...

Even though my poor brain seems to race in the middle of the night (and at other times) I don't want to NOT think. Several years ago I watched a tv program about Alzheimer's. One of the people interviewed said she could sit for hours and not think at all, just be there. Nope, I'll just try to keep my little brain thinking, thank you very much.

anonymous said...

Hoping you feel Loved,Mary

Terra said...

My pup does that too, adding his pee to the favored spot, I understand this is the dog version of mail. He checks his mail and adds his own mail. I read to let your dog stop often and smell the delicious to him scents, it is his way of keeping up with neighborhood news and I do let him stop and smell the roses. My mind sometimes races too at night and I find I can rest by singing the hymn "Leaning. Leaning. Leaning on the everlasting arms. Safe and secure from all alarms." Best wishes for a peaceful night.