Technically Trained

You know Pavlov’s dogs? Well you probably don’t know either him or his dogs, unless maybe you have a time machine.

Anyway Pavlov was able to “condition” or train his dogs to salivate at the sound of a bell. Now this didn’t happen over night obviously as he needed to first get the dogs to associate the sound of the bell with food and then take away the food, but still ring the bell. Whew! Okay so now we are all on the same page right? Good!

Now can someone please tell me how it is that we’ve become conditioned to responding to flashing lights, little buzzes and rings or chimes which tell us we have a new message or text on our device?

You’ve seen these people, their device never out of eyesight or arms reach. They keep glancing at that device in case it summons them accordingly. And we laugh at them. We shake our heads at them and think how crazy they are. We are confident in our willpower and priorities, until our device goes off alerting us to, well, an even wrongly sent message is in our device.

Are we much better than Pavlov’s dogs? Hey did you hear that? Where’s the food! ;)

Woe Great Woe

Isn’t technology just a wonderful thing? It makes life so simple, and so easy? Perhaps too easy. Perhaps far too easy.
It’s wormed its way into our lives so seamlessly, almost without us even noticing it.

Until that day, the dreaded day when you have to change all those passwords! Or even worse, you’ve forgotten your passwords and the answers to those security questions! At moments like these technology can suck. Big time. As in suck more than all the vacuum cleaners in the universe.

Yeah, that was me trying to help a friend set up some stuff on her new system. As in what are you passwords? Where is your list? (Apparently on her phone, which was dead.)

This is when it hit me, just how sinister all these little password demands are. Different passwords, different security questions and you pretty well need a list to keep them all straight, which is somehow not safe! ;)

I know we need the passwords, I know it’s a need to keep security, but for heaven sakes people, can we find a different way around all of this because I can’t tell you just how crazy my lists are becoming!

And we all know I can’t live without my technology!

Sober Musings

Having coffee with a friend recently, she recounted how she had been pulled over for a random “check stop”. An all-encompassing police stop where they may ask for your driver’s license, your registration and insurance for the vehicle. They may check to see if you are wearing the dreaded seatbelt, check where your ever-present cellphone is or they may see if you have been drinking.

She relayed that she was asked how many drinks she had, to which she said none. She was then asked to step put of her vehicle and walk a straight line heel to toe. She said that it wasn’t super easy to do given her foot choice. She was also asked about reciting the alphabet backwards. Which again wasn’t as easy as it sounds.

Upon completely the tasks the officer thanked her for her time, wished her safe travels and sent her on her way. She said it was one of the strangest stops she has ever had.

It got me wonder if I could walk a straight line, heel to toe. Probably it not. Thanks to horrible coordination (I’m known to spill coffee on myself on a fairly regular basis after all!) arthritis and the joys of lupus I’m pretty sure I’d find that a bit of a challenge. And while I’ve learned my ABCs forwards, I couldn’t do it backwards without stopping to sing it forward just to know which letter goes next backwards.

Now clearly the officers have some guidelines and what not to help them in assessing people they pull over. But what about a person who is completely sober and unable to do these tests easily? Tilt you head back with your eyes closed and touch your nose? What if you fall over? I know these all seem like simple things, silly things, but I sure there are sober people who can’t pass these tests. I’m also certain that while some may not be able to do it sober, they may be released enough to do it while mildly intoxicated.

Yes I know there are sophisticated tests they can run and do, but there will always be sober people who will be forced to do these more sophisticated tests because they seem incapable of doing the simple things.

I’m pretty sure if I were pulled over I’d be doing the sophisticated things because I suck at the basic every day things! ;)

Meetings, Musings and Magic

Rich, dark, velvety coffee caressed my taste buds and some how that made up for all the horrible grime of the day. I’m a fairly easy to please kind if girl, good quality coffee,some of my own space, some good conversation and great intellectual debate are pretty much what makes me happy.

Any one of these are enough to distract my mind from a bad day or such. A combination of these items and you found the key! :)

Because the day had been so much less than stellar already and the coffee so very good I wasn’t really paying attention to her words. It was a bit like a Charlie Brown cartoon, where none of the students understand the teacher because her voice is really just a background noise, with not distinguishable sounds. For all I know she may be talking about how she found the cure for cancer of the answer to bringing about world peace. Then again she could have been talking about how to breathe air. Although I doubt it!

Let’s face it, work meetings are rarely riveting, a lot of times they are boring. Work meetings serve a purpose, help to bring the team together and blah blah. But the magic for me, is how a work meeting will automatically shift my mind elsewhere, letting me wander and daydream a bit.

I don’t actually mind that I can get caught up and caught in an escape from stuff. We all so it because it’s part of bring human and because a break from the realities of life is needed now and then. I just wish I wouldn’t find myself doing that during meetings at work or such.

I’m not sure what that says about me or work type meetings, but there you have it. At the best of times I’m only partially there, sometimes I’m more there than others, but I’m never 100% there so don’t except to see me 110% present for these things.

Beloved is amazed by this habit of mine, when I really need to focus and be present, part of me just gets lost in other things. I marvel at how he doesn’t do this. The man is there at work meetings, is fully present and aware. He knows exactly what’s being said and further more who said what. No vagueness on his part.

Still I can’t help but point out that he managed to get stuck with stuff he doesn’t want. Not any less or any more than what I get stuck with by the way.

So I think I will just continue to allow myself to drift slightly during the boring meetings and such. After all we all need breaks and dreams!

Oh The Suffering, Oh The Drama

Tragedy, horrors most awful struck me today. Dread and fear, pain and suffering. Why you may ask? What could cause this kind of horror, especially as there is no coffee shortage yet you may wonder.

I forgot to charge my cellphone and my tablet. Cue the panicky feeling in one’s chest. Cue racing heart beat and blood draining from one’s face. Cue the sense of fainting. Most of all, cue dramatic flair and over dramatization. ;)

I’m always awed, shocked and a little disgusted with myself when something like this happens. I’m far more attached to my gadgets than I’d like to be and yet not nearly as attached as others are. I can still see the humor in a dead tablet and a dying cell phone because I know I don’t really need them.

I also know that some people would tell me to set an alarm, electronic no doubt, to remind me to charge these things so they are always there when I need them. Unless it’s due to signal issues.

But I don’t do this, for a few reasons. First off I’m normally pretty good about charging everyone up. Secondly I’m never in a situation where my cellphone or tablet are my only means to communicate or access data. I certainly see no need, I mean it’s not life or death if it’s not charged for a period of time. It’s just a bit of a hassle until I get used to the item not working. And then it’s just new-found freedom for a bit.

Because let’s face it friends, I’m always going to charge it up, eventually.

I Don’t Normally, But When I Do…

I don’t normally “paint” my nails, but when I do….the phone rings, there is a bug crawling on me, some wayward piece of paper will get stuck to my wet nails. And on and on it goes.

And once I’ve painted my nails it seems like everything I do requires me to use my nails and the nail polish chips off quickly. And then I feel required to “fix” it which leads to layers of all sorts of hideous mess.

If I’ve managed to avoid those disasters I’m still not out of the woods…nails break (I know); I’ve managed to pick the one color that goes with nothing that I own; and on and on it goes.

Now the times that I don’t have “painted” nails, it just so happens that my nails look good. They are ling and strong and healthy and just right.

And folly hits me, this idea that adding color would be the cherry on top. (See above for the issues and why I don’t do it that often!)

I suspect there will never be a time when it’s completely in style to have practical nails or clothing. Now I’m fortunate as my nails grow well etc and normally I don’t have to worry about them in my line of work, but the fact is, when in want to have “adult” or “grown up” nails, I’ve either cut them too short, or a disaster such as above has happened! Please tell me I’m not alone in these minor complaints that I call disasters. ;)

Strange Cycles

“You have some serious compression here…knots here…and, oh my!” She stopped speaking then. I’m not sure what she found that left her speechless, but my neck was finally feeling loose and relaxed.

I have a tendency to carry my stress up in my neck and shoulders. Sometimes I can stretch it out and other times I will find a nice hard corner to try and ease the knots out. And then there are times when things have gotten out of hand and require the hands of another. Like this time. Where my neck felt like a turtle stuck part way in it’s shell. And my shoulder blades felt like they were cemented into place.

Of course not long after getting all loose and comfortable I slide back into my bad habits. I do to get enough rest, I try to do too much at once, my posture goes to hell in a hand basket. (If you should find said hand basket with my posture in it, please return it to me!)

It’s a cycle and one that I seem utterly helpless, or rather unwilling to stop. For some odd reason I rather enjoy that tight pain and then the huge relief as it is released. Yes, I know, it’s weird.