Saturday, November 20, 2010

Brainy stuff

It’s precisely nine minutes past three in the morning, Saturday morning, but since I haven’t slept yet it is still counted as Friday night. Okay so here I am at three in the morning on a Friday night, tired after a long week at work, eyes about to pop off, backache reaching the point of no return, a small headache marching from the back of the head to the eyes and then back, but yet I stay awake. Because it’s Friday night, silly, and you are forgiven for staying up late because the next day is a holiday and you can sleep right through lunch and have your breakfast at four in the afternoon.

Am I the only one, or is there anyone out there who is also afflicted by this Friday night staying up marathon? And nothing important is done in these extra hours. Chat with some friends online, read a few blogs, read the morning newspaper, listen to some old songs, drink an extra cup or two of tea, stand in the balcony and watch the street below, etc.

Today on the way home from work I told a colleague I would forget about the office for the next two days. And that is exactly what I will do, and what I always do, not only on the weekends but during the weekdays too. Maybe I have compartmentalized my brain in such a way that it only processes the events that are happening at that particular moment. When I am at home I don’t even think of the office until I actually reach the place, swipe my access card and step inside the building. And I forget all about my pending bills and landlord visits and blocked drains until I climb the three floors to my apartment and open the door again.

I did a google search on compartmentalizing the brain and the results led me to the differences between male and female brain. I did some more searches and found a lot of scientific explanations and psychological stuff which I'm sure you wouldn’t want to read because I too didn’t read them since they contained big words and scientific terms and three in the morning is no time to wipe the dust off your fat dictionary.

But I found this, it is an easy read, so here goes-

• The male brain is highly specialized, using specific parts of one hemisphere or the other to accomplish specific tasks. The female brain is more diffused and utilizes significant portions of both hemispheres for a variety of tasks.
• Men are able to focus on narrow issues and block out unrelated information and distractions. Women naturally see everyday things from a broader, "big-picture" vantage point.
• Men can narrowly focus their brains on specific tasks or activities for long periods of time without tiring. Women are better equipped to divide their attention among multiple activities or tasks.
• Men are able to separate information, stimulus, emotions, relationships, etc. into separate compartments in their brains, while women tend to link everything together.
• Men see individual issues with parts of their brain, while women look at the holistic or multiple issues with their whole brain (both hemispheres).
• Men have as much as 20 times more testosterone in their systems than do women. This makes men typically more aggressive, dominant and more narrowly focused on the physical aspects of sex.
• In men, the dominant perceptual sense is vision, which is typically not the case with women. All of a woman's senses are, in some respects, more finely tuned than those of a man.
• Pornographers incorporate male/female differences into the design and marketing of their wares. Just because something might not appeal to a man doesn't mean that a woman won't be attracted to it and vice versa.

My further wanderings took me to the left brained – right brained subject. There are again loads of stuff on the subject, plenty of tests available online, a few links below. Let me know your results.

Right Brain Inventory
Left Brain Inventory
Visual, focusing on images, patterns
Verbal, focusing on words, symbols, numbers
Intuitive, led by feelings
Analytical, led by logic
Process ideas simultaneously
Process ideas sequentially, step by step
Mind photos' used to remember things, writing things down or illustrating them helps you remember
Words used to remember things, remember names rather than faces
Make lateral connections from information
Make logical deductions from information
See the whole first, then the details
Work up to the whole step by step, focusing on details, information organized
Organization ends to be lacking
Highly organized
Free association
Like making lists and planning
Like to know why you're doing something or why rules exist (reasons)
Likely to follow rules without questioning them
No sense of time
Good at keeping track of time
May have trouble with spelling and finding words to express yourself
Spelling and mathematical formula easily memorized
Enjoy touching and feeling actual objects (sensory input)
Enjoy observing
Trouble prioritizing, so often late, impulsive
Plan ahead
Unlikely to read instruction manual before trying
Likely read an instruction manual before trying
Listen to how something is being said
Listen to what is being said
Talk with your hands
Rarely use gestures when talking
Likely to think you're naturally creative, but need to apply yourself to develop your potential
Likely to believe you're not creative, need to be willing to try and take risks to develop your potential

By the way, I am left brained.

Sunday, November 7, 2010


Then there were the in-between friends. You know them, the friends I made in the time between our separation and eventual reunion. I was pretty sad then and you could see that in the friends I made. Carefree, wild ones, party animals who only cared about where the next party was. I wouldn't say I was like them. Sure I went to the parties, I did many stupid things, even hooked up with a few forgettable faces, but deep down inside I was always the same person. The same sad lonely person who missed you in a room full of people, the same lost soul who cried for you every night and never forgot you even during all those years. But I never had hope, I always thought you and I were a closed chapter, a forgotten time in the history of our short lives. I mourned for us, for our lost love, for what I thought could be a great thing. But all we did was fade away. Until the memory of your face becomes hazy, until I could no longer remember your voice, until I forgot how your hands felt on mine.

I was fine. I went on with my life, made peace with myself and tried to bring some order to the chaos I had created. I was happy, life was good, and there were days when I didn't think of you. I dropped my in-between friends, severed connections with all our common friends, threw away all your things and listened to our songs without crying. In fact, I sang along.

And one fine day, you came back into my life. You just walked in and said hello and talked about the weather and decided to be my friend. No apologies, no explanations. You returned with your beautiful smile and mesmerising eyes and suddenly all the memories that I had locked away came loose. For a moment I was unable to speak, I just stared at you, but you didn't notice that, did you? You looked at my playlist and laughed at some of the songs, added your own songs telling me they were beautiful and how had I lived this long without listening to them? You acted as if you see me everyday, as if the last three years never happened and it was yesterday since we last met. You borrowed my books without asking; you know very well I never lend my books to anyone. You knew you were the exception. You didn't have to say anything, and I knew better than to say anything. You left, and we both know you would be back.