TED Talks: Ideas worth spreading
> View my TED profile
> View Jill's TED profile and video
While everyone else was watching the MTV Video Music Awards, I was watching TED Talks online. (Incidentally, the New York Times shares my view on the award show.) I've always found TED Talks to be fascinating, but as my life took a hectic turn, I watched these talks less and less until I eventually stopped altogether. My boyfriend Corey has gotten me back into watching them by recommending a fascinating one: "Jill Bolte Taylor: My Stroke of Insight" about one woman's struggle to survive a stroke. The description on the website is more accurate: "Jill Bolte Taylor got a research opportunity few brain scientists would wish for: She had a massive stroke, and watched as her brain functions -- motion, speech, self-awareness -- shut down one by one. An astonishing story." Truly astonishing.
I have a personal tie to this story, a tragic tie. My mother passed away from a brain aneurysm. I don't say she lived with, or suffered with, because she didn't know she had it and died suddenly when a blood vessel ruptured in the frontal cortex of her brain. I was the one who found her, and I've been working with a wonderful therapist since 2012 to try and cope with the trauma.
I wish I could've been inside my mother's brain when the aneurysm occurred, much like Jill was observing the deterioration of her mental faculties and motor function. Sometimes, I wish it would've been me having an aneurysm, not my mom. I wonder if she knew it was coming, or that something was going to happen. I wonder if she felt pain, or sadness, or fear. I hope not. I hope she experienced it like Jill did. A beautiful adventure. I'd be a lot less sleep deprived if I had a definite answer.
To switch back to a positive note, I'm now obsessively downloading and watching all of these amazing TED Talks. Some on mental illness, sleep, bacteria. My boyfriend Corey tells me that they're also available on Netflix, which is awesome. (I'm a late bloomer just discovering Netflix for the first time.) I'm always craving brain food, and I've been pleasantly surprised at how much of it I've gotten from my boyfriend Corey. I'm really happy and lucky to have him. Thanks, Corey.
I set out looking for my favorite photo of Margaret Atwood, the one to the left, and I figured the easiest thing to do would be to go to MargaretAtwood.com. Not true, because although there is a picture, it's not my favorite; and, oddly enough, typing MargaretAtwood.com takes you to her landing page on amazon.com. Tricky. Turns out she resides at MargaretAtwood.ca instead. After all, she is Canadian.
I love Margaret Atwood for many reasons, but 4 primary reasons assert themselves: 1. Her wit, 2. "Oryx and Crake", 3. "The Year of the Flood", and 4. "MaddAddam". The last three reasons are her dystopian "MaddAddam" trilogy. The third book, titled "MaddAddam", is being released in September. I was lucky enough to get my hands on an advance digital copy, and I'm ashamed to say I haven't read it. I'll let you know when I do.
I'm a fan of Margaret Atwood on Facebook, and the inspiration for this blog post came from an article she had linked to on her Facebook wall. The article is great, but the video on the site is even better. Please watch it. She's just so well spoken and quick witted. For being 73, she's surprisingly tech savvy and cool. At least read the free excerpts on amazon.com.
I transcribed my favorite part of the video: "Dystopias just mean very unpleasant societies. So, you can have a dystopia that's a fantasy world on another planet. You can have a dystopia that is a real possibility for us. You can have a dystopia that's far, far away in a another universe and at a different time like Star Wars. So, everything that happens in dystopias is everything that we don't like. People used to put it underground and call it hell. Just as they used to put everything we like, they used to put it up in the sky and call it heaven. Within every dystopia, there's always a little bit of utopia; and in every utopia, there's always a little dystopia. It's also true that one person's utopia is another person's dystopia."
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My name is Nicholas Emeigh, but everyone calls me Nick, and I prefer it. I'm usually called Nicholas when I'm in trouble. I'm from the Philadelphia area, work in business, and fancy myself as a freelance graphic designer, writer, and artist. I have a passion for art in all its forms including music, but I restrict my singing to the shower and the car for the good of society. If you'd like to know more, just send me an e-mail. I really appreciate you stopping by.