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The Pleasure of Walking

In 2006, I quit the vast majority of intoxicants. I don't drink, I don't use recreational drugs, I don't smoke tobacco, I don't drink soda, and I am working on quitting all sweets entirely, and largely succeeding. I am not one for fine dining, and not frequently one for other forms of hedonism.

I usually do not advertise this - I might write about it for people who wish to know what I do, but I do not bring it up in conversation unless it comes up. But occasionally it does come up, and a common reaction is someone saying, half-joking, "Then why bother living?"

I think I understand. Many people do jobs they dislike for causes they feel nothing about. This must wreak havoc on a man's spirit. Most people spend more of their waking time on their work than any other thing - I can only imagine what spending the bulk of my time on something I disliked would feel like. Or worse, not even something I disliked - but something I felt very neutral about.

If a man's occupation becomes a slow crushing of his spirit, then of course he would need high energy, and high impact to free him from it. He needs to fit all of his leisure into his remaining waking time - from 6PM at night to 10PM when he is home from work, on the two days of his weekend, and his vacation time each year. Of course, not even that time is all his own - he still has to commute, run errands, do admin, do necessary little things. The reality of the situation is far worse - most people don't live bad lives, they just move slowly and quietly through things they don't particularly care for.

Of course, if a man only had 5% of his waking time to himself, he would want to maximize this time in the easiest, most surefire way of producing pleasure and relaxation. Who could blame this man? I don't. If I was suffering through a soul-killing occupation and had very little time, I would want to make sure that the time I did have was very enjoyable.

Lab 3: Embryonic development and coronal dissections

On Daniell's Brain and Behavior Lab Blog

Can you believe the strange figure above will develop into a fully functioning human in a few months? The strange looking figure above is an embryo. Embryonic development consist of many changes and developments. During the fourth week of pregnancy the embryonic brain is visible. Three swellings are also visible at this time. Theses swellings are the Forebrain, midbrain and the hindbrain. A week after the embryonic brain is visible, these three swellings then develop into five swellings: Telencephalon, Diencephalon, Mesencephalon, Metencephalon, and Myelencephalon. The forebrain develops into the Telencephalon and Diencephalon. The midbrain stays the same but is now called the Mesencephalon. Lastly the hindbrain develops into the Metencephalon and Myelencephalon.

In brain and behavior lab we discussed which of the previously studied structures of the brain are found in the correct division of the brain. The four lobes of the brian, frontal, parietal, occipital, and temporal, in addition to the pyriform cortex olfactory bulb and cingulate cortex are apart of the forebrain. The midbrain consist of structures such as the mammillary body, third ventricle, thalamus, lateral ventricles, and hypothalamus. Lastly the hindbrain consist of the medulla, pons, cerebellum, cerebral aqueduct, cerebral peduncle, and the forth ventricle. This review part of the lab was very helpful in grouping the previously learned structures to the the 3 divisions of the brain.

Next we did coronal dissections on the brain. We cut three slices on one of our midsagital sheep brain piece. The sheep brain was fairly easy to cut through but once we got to the 3rd cut , through the superior colliculus and the cerebral aqueduct rostral to the pons, the brain began to fall apart. Though this lab wasn’t messy, the brain falling apart wasn’t a pleasant slight. The three dissections helped us see previously learned structures such as the corpus callosum, optic chiasim, ventricles, and so forth from a coronal point of view.

This hands on experience was very beneficial because it helped me notice that different structures of the brain look different from different point of views. Initially it was a bit difficult for me to locate different structures from the coronal point of view because I wasn’t use to looking at structures from this point of view. Despite this initial obstacle, this lab was very informative and successful!

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