Friday, June 4

On My Mind

Or, perhaps, on my many minds? I should say that I can't quite believe that I follow "the most popular marketing blog in the world." Marketing! Gah! And yet, Seth Godin has caught my interest because his insights into the self-defeating workings of what he calls the lizard brain has helped me understand the origins of what my writing teacher calls the shitbird. No, Seth, the noise inside your head isn't bothering me at all — the noise inside my head is loud enough to drown it out, and most of everything else!

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Having been aware since I was very, very young (in kindergarten or even younger) of my non-stop inner dialogue, I'm now interested learning more about the basis in the brain for the sense of a self that speaks to itself, that is at odds with itself, that has an often-surprising dream life. Oh, that I had more time to read more than just the review in Bookforum of this book. Here are the sentences (in the review) that intrigue me the most:
While [Princeton psychologist Julian] Jaynes argued that the Greek gods were invented to explain the breakdown of the bicameral mind — our hemispheres were finally able to listen to each other — McGilchrist argues the opposite: He interprets the internal voices the Greeks projected onto Mount Olympus "as being due to the closing of the door, so that the voices of intuition now appear distant, 'other'; familiar but alien, wise but uncanny." The emanations of the right hemisphere became both holy and neglected, abstract.

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While I was touring a local Montessori pre-school with the Critter, the head teacher told me that she works with parents to define reasonable goals for each child. I told her that I wasn't one of those parents. Though I must say that I must be on my guard against becoming one of them. For example, I recently bumped into a local mom who took her daughter to a couple of our Music Together classes but ultimately did not enroll. I told her that the Critter has been going to the classes since he was four months old. Have I seen any progress? she asked, and for a moment I panicked. Progress? Has the Critter been showing any progress??? But before I got caught up in the panic, I remembered what the music class is really about for us, and I replied, "Oh, I don't know. We just go because I want the Critter to experience music." Whew. Oh, little Critter, I do hope that I can keep a wary eye on my competitiveness and go on letting you be ordinary.

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Wondering how to get veggies into the Critter. He rejects most green foods, though we can sometimes sneak some into him if smothered in cheese. As for non-green veggies: sweet potatoes, usually; beets, sometimes; carrots, sometimes. The Progressive Pioneer has some suggestions. And green smoothies sound like a good idea for both of us.

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Also wondering what the word feminist really means. I've been one since forever (thanks to Miss Piggy — seriously), but it's been 14+ years since my last Women's Studies class, and no way could I give you a satisfying one-sentence definition of feminist on the spot. Someone who believes in equal rights for women? I'm certain there's much more to it than that, but I couldn't tell you what. I'm interested in reading this book (also recently reviewed in Bookforum): it sounds as though feminist once meant many, many more different things than it does today.

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Speaking of feminists, I'm looking forward to a reading tonight: The War on Moms, by local (to me) author Sharon Lerner.

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And, too: women's reproductive choices keep getting more and more restricted. If you're a New Yorker, please take action in favor of the Midwifery Modernization Act. No, ACOG, I don't trust you. Not for one minute.

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And finally, a friend shared a link to these amazing photographs today. Reminds me of Beckett's paintings. Gorgeous.

2 comments:

Karen said...

Me too, re: Seth Godin, Rachel. Just bought his book Linchpin as part of my summer reading. See you in the Fall.

raerae said...

I put the same book on hold at the library, but I haven't yet been able to get over there to pick it up....