Blog Archives

75% of input to our visual cortex

does not come from our eyes but from the rest of our brain…

So only 25% of the information that comes through our eyes from the outside world is part of our total visual experience. Perhaps, then, seeing is not necessarily believing.

That’s might be why the language of colour is so important in our perception of it.

And why we experience some colours differently *from others, and the same colour differently *from other people.

Study in Blue by Patrick Heron (Basildon Arts Trust)

*Perhaps this should be differently to, too tired to investigate.

Things you think you will never do. AKA How Far Standards Can Slip

Oh yes I started this whole parenting thing with mighty good intentions and I have done my shifts at the Bringing up a Healthy Baby Factory with something approaching good grace. For example, in pregnancy, what else can you do for the little blighter other than avoid smoking, drinking and drugs and eat healthily, plus take your supplements. Then when they are born what else can you do except feed them as healthily as you can, at whatever hour they demand it, with reasonable grace whilst introducing cuddles and clean clothes. At this point I found it advisable to reintroduce drinking (in moderation) to my own regime and eat a feck load of cake.

I have spent whole weeks of my life pureeing any fruit or vegetable within arm’s reach. I have eaten mushy risotto, pasta and mashed potato dishes for my own tea for weeks on end so we were all dining with a modicum of virtue. When they are little kids need this, plus some love and then they need you to start telling them what to do. Or what not to do.

Then at some point the goalposts shift silently overnight and you end up having children with their own opinions about food. And you start to have to manage behaviours rather than rule them out with edicts and you start having to seriously model the adult you hope that they might become and somehow you get involved in so many “issues” that the time for peeling and chopping suddenly seems to vanish and the only thing you end up cutting is the odd corner (and pizza).

N.B. The Guv’nor won’t countenance processed food and neither will I really, but when the cat’s away…

Corners I have cut this week include:

1) Hot dogs and chips for tea – although I did cut the onions myself. But to my shame the hot dog rolls came from a shop I go in once every six months and I noticed that the sell by date was the end of October on them which made me suspicious. So I read the packet. The ingredients included that well know bread ingredient ethanol. Of course any self-respecting parent would at this point realise their horrendous mistake (cost £1.19) and bin the atrocity. With starving kids close at hand I did not. Dear reader they ate the heinous bread product. How low can you go? Lower actually.

2) You may have read about the family swimming expedition. Well I left a bit out. *Hangs head* The bit when the kids come out of the pool and are so cold and hungry that they start trying to eat each other. You know what’s coming don’t you? Yes, I crossed the road and took them in to the tarnished arches of McDonalds. I can barely type the word. The Guv’nor would have no truck with this obviously and went off to the nearest morally and nutrionally superior branch of Subway. Oh the guilt.

Well on the upside the Pope will be around tomorrow. Perhaps I can get me some absolution after preparing a penitent meal comprised entirely of line-caught fish and organically grown vegetables.

Just to even things up a little, lest you get the idea that all nutrional wrongdoing is entirely a makemeadiva enterprise, check this out.

Actually, now I think of it, that was on my watch too. But there is another guilty party: you know who you are…

Blue in Leigh-on-Sea

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A Bad Friday (I wanted blue)

The Guv’nor had a bad day at the office last Friday, it was very stressful he said. Now this is more information that is usually forthcoming in a month, so I was compelled to inquire further.

Woodberry Down was once a really depressing estate on the Seven Sisters Road near Manor House on the Piccadilly line (that’s the dark blue line). It has had loads of money spent on it, so it may be improved, but being on that busy thoroughfare you can only facelift so much I’m guessing. This is where Friday’s decorating job was; for a lovely Turkish family. Due to water damage they only needed one wall matching and painting. The Guv’nor’s guv’nor had done the matching, so the main man turned up with an apprentice and a tin of paint.

As it turned out, the paint was blue as required by the wall to be painted, but the wrong shade of blue. No matter, the Guv’nor says, I know what that is, that’s Doll’s House blue. So off they go in the van to Hackney Wick to get a bit of Doll’s House. The trip to Hackney Wick is not that far, a few miles at most, but it also requires getting through Clapton or Stoke Newington and can take some time…

Back at the flat, one trip to the Wick under their belts, they give the wall one coat of Doll’s House. It’s the wrong blue. So far so bad, but maybe a little bit understandable, Doll’s House is close but not close enough. The next bit is where my mouth started hanging open. So now the apprentice says, and remember this is in a house full of people who actually live in it and pay rent and so forth, I know what colour that is – it’s Pompadour. Doh says the Guv’nor of course it is. Why didn’t you say that when I was going down the Doll’s House blind alley?

So off they go to Hackney Wick for the second time and bring back the apprentice’s best effort.

And, I asked? Yes, you guessed it – what do apprentices know. That’s why they have their own horse races to ride in. So the Guv’nor having played his best hand and having wasted enough time to have painted the whole room in the first pot of paint that was the wrong colour was forced to resort to getting the colour chart from the van – which he was gracious enough to admit he should have done in the first place.

Why I asked, majoring in annoying questions, did you not get the chart out in the first place?

Because the Guv’nor said I am a man and men do not look at maps even when they are lost.

Good answer. Perfectly understandable. I have never liked Woodberry Down.

Just needs a lick of Pompadour