How does your brain idle?
June 22, 2005 2:50 PM Subscribe
What does your brain do in the background while it's idling?
posted by argybarg to grab bag (54 answers total) 22 users marked this as a favorite
If I'm doing something half-brained and repetitive, I can notice my brain going through its background routines:
-- I mentally pace out rooms in groups of five steps, with a set routine matching inside/outside steps to convex/concave articulations of furniture, etc.
-- If I'm driving, I count off car length in groups of (again) five, matching them to roadside features (reflectors, or guardrail posts).
-- I assign notes in a melody to different positions of my lower and upper teeth meeting, then click out the melodies on my teeth. If the melody has more than 9 notes, I can't do this.
-- If I'm away from home (let's say at a restaurant), I rehearse driving home, especially the details of getting out of the parking lot.
I had a friend who compulsively spelled words backwards. Other than that, no one has shared their mental screen-savers with me. Consequently, I wonder if I'm normal or if I ought to be lining up to be profiled by Oliver Sacks.