Winter / Bare Feet / Aspie Footwear

It’s that time of year again: 80s a week ago; now into the 30s at night. “Hard freeze” forecast this week. My potted flowers hanging on… doomed.

So – one of my “Aspie” adjustments is the problem of footwear, having gone barefoot since May… Outdoor winter boots are no problem; but indoors? My house is almost 100 years old. Frame with no insulation nor carpeting and a dirt crawl space below. Heat is uneven at best and the wood floors are perpetually cold.

That means “house slippers” an odd, neglected (design-wise) and frustrating category of footwear that has barely changed or improved since the mid 1900s.

Today’s choices uphold the “Novelty – neoteny” trend of modern social humans, for whom “childish” footwear applies to adults. 

Crocheting never dies…. and guess what? Leg Warmers are back…

Japanese “toilet” shoes…

This is labeled “fashion tip”

The choices available in “nowhere” Wyoming come down to leftovers shipped here from China via the basement stores of “major national retailers” – pink and purple crap that was unsold from last year…

It’s truly sad that I’ll likely order something cheap and benign from ebay…

Oh look – this is what poor “uncivilized” and savage Native Americans had to “settle for” … 

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Types of Nonverbal Communication / Info for Aspies, Autistics

https://doi.org/10.24926/8668.0401    Click here for full article

Types of Nonverbal Communication

Key Takeaways

  • Kinesics refers to body movements and posture and includes the following components:

    • Gestures are arm and hand movements and include adaptors like clicking a pen or scratching your face, emblems like a thumbs-up to say “OK,” and illustrators like bouncing your hand along with the rhythm of your speaking.
    • Head movements and posture include the orientation of movements of our head and the orientation and positioning of our body and the various meanings they send. Head movements such as nodding can indicate agreement, disagreement, and interest, among other things. Posture can indicate assertiveness, defensiveness, interest, readiness, or intimidation, among other things.
    • Eye contact is studied under the category of oculesics and specifically refers to eye contact with another person’s face, head, and eyes and the patterns of looking away and back at the other person during interaction. Eye contact provides turn-taking signals, signals when we are engaged in cognitive activity, and helps establish rapport and connection, among other things.
    • Facial expressions refer to the use of the forehead, brow, and facial muscles around the nose and mouth to convey meaning. Facial expressions can convey happiness, sadness, fear, anger, and other emotions.
  • Haptics refers to touch behaviors that convey meaning during interactions. Touch operates at many levels, including functional-professional, social-polite, friendship-warmth, and love-intimacy.
  • Vocalics refers to the vocalized but not verbal aspects of nonverbal communication, including our speaking rate, pitch, volume, tone of voice, and vocal quality. These qualities, also known as paralanguage, reinforce the meaning of verbal communication, allow us to emphasize particular parts of a message, or can contradict verbal messages.
  • Proxemics refers to the use of space and distance within communication. US Americans, in general, have four zones that constitute our personal space: the public zone (12 or more feet from our body), social zone (4–12 feet from our body), the personal zone (1.5–4 feet from our body), and the intimate zone (from body contact to 1.5 feet away). Proxemics also studies territoriality, or how people take up and defend personal space.
  • Chronemics refers the study of how time affects communication and includes how different time cycles affect our communication, including the differences between people who are past or future oriented and cultural perspectives on time as fixed and measured (monochronic) or fluid and adaptable (polychronic).
  • Personal presentation and environment refers to how the objects we adorn ourselves and our surroundings with, referred to as artifacts, provide nonverbal cues that others make meaning from and how our physical environment—for example, the layout of a room and seating positions and arrangements—influences communication

gONE fREE gONE wILD / New Blog

It was a chore, but I finally have a new blog for my travel journal in a new format that’s actually accessible and readable! The old version was Some People are Lost, which will disappear once I check for anything I’ve missed.)

And the journal has a new – old name. I had changed it because I thought that the first title – courtesy of a Texan who appears in a couple chapters – over-promised on what the content was like, but after so many years with the wrong title, I realized that he was not talking about the content, of which he had no knowledge, but he was referring to me. I think it’s an old Texas saying, but he applied it rightly, as only a Texan can.

It’s good to remember that I was thoroughly Asperger at the time, but utterly unaware of that situation.

Miss America Gone Wrong

“There She Goes”

It’s all there, but needs tweaking and illustrations.

http://gonefreegonewild.wordpress.com

Cartoon Physics / Coyote – Road Runner Re-Post

Humor for Geeks.  Appreciation of Coyote vs. Road Runner “stupid physics” requires both an intuitive and learned understanding of physics. Of course, the physically impossible interactions are funny in a “psychological” context also; concrete vs. supernatural perception.

If I were a physics teacher I would definitely use these in class – and for “reality” testing!

Life’s Lessons / Warning: Unladylike Language

There is some shit that I will not eat.

There is some shit that we all must eat.

There is some shit that we choose to eat.

And then, there is our own shit…

Gone Wild expanding on EE Cummings

Sci-Fi Psychology / Star Trek, “The Empath” 1968

Did psychologists who grew up in the 1960s get their “theories” from watching Star Trek?

“Believe it or not, here in the UK the BBC refused to screen this episode because it was deemed too sadistic. I think we eventually got it (got to see it) in the 1990s.  I had read it many times in the James Blish books so didn’t realise I’d not actually seen it.” …from the youtube posting

“Empathy” in this scenario ought to be called what it is; human sacrifice.  That’s hardly a convincing argument for compassion.

Note: It’s a woman who “dies” for a man. McCoy’s wounds are healed by “hooky spooky” magic. Star Trek relied heavily on magic as a plot device, conveniently, when technology failed, that is, when the writers failed to come up with (pseudo)scientific resolutions.

An oft-employed character directed at adolescent males was the Alien Nymphomaniac. Despite resisting mightily, Kirk would “give in” and “do it” anyway. These sex fiend alien females were created out of the paranoid (male) cliché that human females can overcome the strong rational male with “hooky spooky” sex magic. That is, women cheat using sex-power!

Drusilla, Kirk’s “Roman” Sex Slave / actress Lois Jewell

“Vina” Orion Slave Girl, actress Susan Oliver

Hmm… looking back, Star trek influenced female fashion and “self-image” also.

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Synopsis: Kirk, Spock and McCoy suddenly find themselves in an underground laboratory where they meet an attractive young woman who is not only mute but also an empath who can absorb someone else’s pain. When their captors (psychologists with big bumpy skulls and nifty sparkly lab coats?) make themselves known, they refuse to explain why the three men have been taken prisoner or why they and the young woman, whom McCoy has named Gem, are there. Inexplicably, they set about torturing them for no apparent reason.

Fortunately, Gem’s empathic powers allow her to take away their pain, but only at great sacrifice to herself. When their captors tell Kirk that he must choose which of his men to die, their selflessness comes to the fore, leaving Dr. McCoy volunteering himself. They all soon learn that the object of the experiment is Gem herself. Synopsis written by garykmcd

 

 

 

 

How much of the body and its functions are controlled by the brain?

If my introductory dithering is boring or annoying, and you’re looking for entertainment, scroll down to: Doctors of Quora, what’s something you’ve had to tell a patient that you thought for sure was common knowledge?

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The topic for this post is, “How much of the body and its functions are actually controlled by the brain?”

This is especially important for neurodiverse people who are “diagnosed” with so-called brain disorders, which attribute even the most trivial human behaviors to specific “control centers” in the brain.

Allergies: Today’s topic of interest began with the usual “waking up to” an alien world = headache, itchy swollen eyes, (itchy everything!), sneezing, and completeley stuffed up nose. A cool, cool wind blowing through the house.

If pressed, I would admit that “time asleep” is a separate life that I live; very active visually with dreams in “another world” that is just as familiar as “this one” but mostly more pleasant – absent are daily problems but big dramas replay and continue that take place “outside time”. Where is this place that I’m “living” during sleep? Who are these people who “know me” when the “land of neurotypicals” is bereft of such understanding or recognition of my existence as an individual “who belongs”?

Sometimes I’n not sure where I am when I wake up. Suddenly, abruptly, the sensations of my body intrude on lovely sleep. This morning, for some reason, I tried to “orient” myself by what I was wearing – I was up late due to the heat, and zonked out in my T-shirt and jeans. Being a “boring” Aspie, I wear the same outfit everyday – different color T-shirts and jeans, but not in any specific color assignment by day of the week or other scheme. Random.

I thought, while still groggy, that if I could remember what color T-shirt I have on (no fair peeking) I would know what day it is, but I couldn’t remember. I waited. An “image” appeared of me in a purple T-shirt, as if my eyes were open and I was “x-raying” myself through the blanket. Oh, good! It’s Thursday morning.

Allergy symptoms: Why no symptoms when I’m asleep? They hit me like a Tsunami only when I awake – wouldn’t it be wonderful if I could “ignore” the plague of swelling, sneezing, itching and painful sinuses, only while asleep, but while I’m awake?

Hmmm… what exactly is going on? What does the brain actually control? There seems to be much that the body does that is automatic… if the brain really dominates, then why can’t I “control” my immune response to pollen and other “stuff” that is carried in the air, or ignore the symptoms while I’m awake?

It would be great to have a brain with a driver or operator named “ME” who can actually order the body to stop overreacting or “doing” annoying things.

Humans tend to think that this is the “way we work” with the “conscious experience” as “who we are”, but attribute the “mysterious driver” to another dimension entirely, made up of invisible beings that track, control, or dictate our physical existence from a “heavenly” control room somewhere “up there”. A control being that is imagined to reside within our body has a name: the Humunculus, which is a projection of our senses as a composite being. The external controllers we call gods, spirits or vague cosmic forces, depending on which culture formed our concept of where this other world of control exists. For some groups, this alternate reality is immanent in Nature and not remote at all. For others it’s a “dimension” that is unseen, but can be located “in the sky” or, now that we are aware of the immensity of space and other probable life forms, the distance to this “domain” is measured to include “space aliens” who deliberately interfere in human life (for some strange reason).

“How much of the body and its functions are actually controlled by the brain?” This question has particular importance for “neurodiversity” and diagnosis of developmental “brain disorders” the characterizations of which attribute even the most trivial human behaviors to specific “control centers” in the brain.

This has always seemed absurd to me and quite a dangerous propositionThis concentration of “all behavior” in one “organ” simply ignores facts about the human body and living creatures, now and throughout the evolution of life. Some creatures have no “brain” as such or more than one brain, each of which operate functions or body parts independently. Some insect species function as “collective” brains, with specific responsibilities carried out by physically independent animals that coordinate in acts of “hive mind” – which to us, focussed as we are on “control by a being or beings” outside our bodies, is “mysterious or magical” but behavior that seems “bizarre” to humans is common throughout Nature. Schooling fish, bait balls, the mass coordinted flight of birds and bats, mass migrations, “magnetic field” navigation, orientation to starlight, moonlight, sunlight, and sensory perception of scent and frequencies all along the electromagnetic spectrum, and responsiveness to the earth’s orbit and solar output (climate) demonstrate that the Earth and its life are inseperable from “physics” (a handful of equations!) that underly the workings of the “solar neighborhood” and beyond.

Here is what one person had to say, (an anatomy and physiology student) in answer to a question on Quora:

How much of the human body’s function is controlled by the brain and how much is autonomous chemistry or biology?

“This is a bit of massive question, mostly because of the enormous complexity of the human body. However the simplest answer is, almost every function in the human body is both controlled and not controlled by the brain. Let me explain…”

“Think of your body as a puppet and your brain as the puppeteer.” (Coming up appropriate analogies is a high art; most analogies miss the mark by a mile – this one is no exception. It contradicts the answer given below)

“Almost every cell in the body works independently of any kind of brain involvement, up until the brain is involved. A perfect example of this is reflex arcs; reflexes such as the patellar reflex and achilles reflex exist completely separate from the brain. These reflexes can even be seen in brain dead patients, an exceptionally creepy example is the Lazarus Sign, in which dead patients arms can rise up off the bed.”

“That is to say, the body, for the most part, doesn’t need the brain to operate. There are of course notable exceptions, the most prominent being the autonomic nervous system. The system that controls key parts of your body that help keep you alive. Things like your heart rate and respiratory rate, without a brain, you couldn’t breathe. Although your heart, which keeps its own pace, would still beat and circulate oxygen.”

“So to summarise, the majority of the human body is not controlled by the brain, but it can be. Your muscles and your organs are independent systems, but when they receive electrochemical instructions, the brain is in control.”

In this view, (I have no idea if it’s correct) the brain is like a “behind the scenes” actor that intervenes if a system is “off track” – it’s a monitor that keeps the “whole shebang” within certain parameters that are required to keep the organism from failing. No small task!

The “rest of the answers” to related questions quickly descend into Logic Hell, citing rambling “explanations” that belong to neurotypical nuttiness; magical thinking, supernatural causes, folktales, conspiracy theories, pop-culture, and the like. 

But!

One question provided astounding disclosures by doctors and nurses about their encounters with patients, and not only in the U.S.

Doctors of Quora, what’s something you’ve had to tell a patient that you thought for sure was common knowledge?

https://www.quora.com/Doctors-of-Quora-whats-something-youve-had-to-tell-a-patient-that-you-thought-for-sure-was-common-knowledge#!n=12/

OMG!

An important answer – and further indictment of a FAILED U.S. Education system!

As a paramedic, I have met many patients who lacked “common knowledge”. While I can think of many examples, I wanted to link to a government study showing the effects of low “health literacy” which is a real problem and is very much overlooked.

While writing a paper last year, I was very surprised to read that approximately 80 million adults in the US (study conducted in 2003) have “limited health literacy.”

The study found that more than one third of the population had difficulty in understanding basic health information and would struggle to understand the labels on their prescription medication or to follow medication regiments.

Other studies have found that the majority of patients do not discuss these difficulties with their Dr or pharmacist.

Health Literacy Interventions and Outcomes: An Updated Systematic Review

Page 24

Burden of Low Literacy and Low Health Literacy

https://effectivehealthcare.ahrq…

In 2003, the US Department of Education conducted a survey entitled “National Assessment of Adult Literacy” (NAAL). The most comprehensive examination of adult literacy to date, the NAAL surveyed more than 19,000 adults age 16 and older and included items intended to measure health literacy directly. More than one-third of respondents (36 percent) taking the NAAL scored in the lowest two (“basic” and “below basic”) out of four categories on health literacy items, suggesting that approximately 80 million adults in the United States have limited health literacy, including related prose, document, and quantitative skills. These adults may have difficulty with even simple tasks such as reading and understanding the instructions on a prescription bottle or filling out an insurance form. Although the NAAL did not independently report on prose, document, or quantitative health literacy, its predecessor, the National Adult Literacy Survey (NALS), reported similar proportions of individuals scoring in the lowest proficiency levels across these domains.

 

 

Interstellar Travel and Colonization / Sane or Neurotypical?

If “we” are determined to have real “live” members of Homo sapiens travel to another planet in order to colonize that planet, just how would we achieve that? Sending “live” humans is terribly inefficient and more than difficult- Even if they were freeze dried (or whatever) once they were “resurrected” they would eventually kill each other off, and we’d have a $20-trillion tomb lost in space.

Okay: We’ll send a ship full of robots. The robots, if and when they arrived at a planet or a moon having a “habitable zone for organic life” would design life forms that are suitable to that planet’s physical environments. Or – maybe we ought to choose a planet with no “native” life at all. No need to exterminate the local flora and fauna; let the robots find an energy source to power themselves and they can sit around for eternity doing…what? Watching TV shows made by and for themselves; sitcoms about robots sitting around doing nothing but “monitoring” their energy infrastructure.

And what’s the likelihood that if these robots are “equipped” with humanlike awareness and personalities that they will be made in the image of competitive predatory males and psycho-killer “boys with boobs” just like Home? Haven’t we exhausted that terrible cartoon version of Homo sapiens here on Earth?

The Robot mission might be to plant “a DNA garden” and move on. Too rational: we want “people like us” to populate the universe, even if that means screwing up one or more planets or entire star systems.

We all know that no sane option will fulfill the “narcissistic destiny” of mankind, even if that means we’re stuck sending “human” cyborgs across the Milky Way, or billionaires’ heads stored in jars, ready to take over a planet we’ve creatively named Earth2 and to “employ” any advanced life form that will accept minimum wage; no benefits or healthcare. Every stinking piece of the ship will have corporate logos stuck to it, just in case a passing craft driven by Little Green Men wants to order bar-b-que in a box and a beach umbrella: Amazon delivers.

If a sane person were in charge of this expedition, no male would EVER be allowed to enter the exploratory / colonization craft. No sane “designer” would use critical space, energy and supplies to haul a 200 lb. “sperm can” through space. Add the testosterone-violence factor and any space ship will be restricted to females. Think about it: one human male; one Y DNA contribution. No way: thousands of sperm samples would be rigidly screened for genetic health and diversity and confined to a sperm bank. Choice: thousands of sperm lines in one 200 lb. can, or one sperm line in one 200 lb. can. No brainer.

Watch out Universe; we’re on our way!

imagesUMT2U8QIimages2AQTE7N4imagesRQS507EM

A ship run by robots that “look” human – better yet, robots that look like Hello Kitty, Golden Lab puppies, Barbie and Ken. Throw in a dozen Terminator/psycho Sarah Connors and the Matrix “insect” people. And make the ship look just like the Death Star: no, A Magic Castle! Don’t forget Mr. Spock, Captain Kirk  and the entire crew and every character that ever appeared on any episode of any incarnation of Star Trek. (The indigenous aliens have “for sure” seen every episode by now)

And imagine all the “Real Housewives of Planet X” spin offs coming to cable TV in a zillion years from now! Wow!

vina2

Let’s send robots that look like this That would be funny!

 Any aliens (Oops! We’ll be the aliens) we encounter are going to LUV us!