Monday, July 27, 2015


Pain is subjective, both physical and psychological.  Experiments show that pain perception changes with environmental conditions.  I remember vividly reading about a middle-class housewife who was part of an experiment on pain perception.  She lived somewhere in the middle states (I guess I don't remember that vividly).  To test her pain threshold, researchers stuck her with needles.  She felt pain very, very quickly--her threshold was low.  She moved to Alaska and lived in extreme conditions.  They tested her again.  Her pain threshold changed drastically. 

Or something like that.

I had been getting sick a lot around the time I read it (I was in college), and I had decided that I would not get sick any more.  I was reading a book by O. Wilson, I think, in which he wrote about thinking away a wart on his hand.  I had one--and I thought it away.  Later, I got involved in biofeedback.  Everyone can do it, but you can train yourself to do it better.  You can change your brainwaves pretty quickly and move them into the same patterns as people who experience nirvana (whatever that is). 

I didn't catch a cold or get sick again for a very long time. 

To wit: two articles in this morning's New York Times got me feeling edgy.  One is part of a series of reports on the atrocities that occur daily at sea (link).  I hope the reporter wins a Pulitzer for the series.  The other one (link), reports on why students experience anxiety and then depression (and why some commit suicide) in elite colleges in America. 

Someone sent me this.  I thought it more profound than funny.

We are traumatizing children about where they pee (link).  I'm just amazed, truly.  Everyone in America is distressed and on the verge (link). 

Me, too.  You can't imagine what heroic efforts it has taken for me not to off myself over the years.  WTF? 

I had a lovely dinner last night with Ili, my mother, and a friend.  I made a sirloin roast with red potatoes, yellow onions, carrots, and half a bottle of wine in the Romertopf.  We had a salad made of eight "superfoods" that was wholly delicious.  We had a pitcher of sangria and a bottle of good red wine and a very expensive scotch aged for eighteen years in port barrels.  Desert was strawberry shortcake with whipped cream and vanilla ice cream.  And for kicks and giggles we had two Dragon fruit as well (more superfood). 

It is the Facebook/Instagram life, no? 

I have nightmares, though.  What if I woke up in a fishing boat on the high seas?  Last night, the electricity went out and it started getting warm in the house.  I had to get up, look up the emergency number, and call it.  It was awful.  It will effect my day profoundly. 

Ah, well, at least the Leica Monochrom is in transit.  That will either lift my spirits or make me want to hang myself.  Life is difficult, really.  I fear that sometimes it won't be as much fun as it is at others. 

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