Brain Rental

Started the month with my annual CAHM brain rental for a study I’ve been in for 6 years now. I’m a healthy control subject in a couple of studies looking at memory, decision making & dexterity and aging.The study is spread over three days, first day was March 24, then April 1 & 2 to finish. It’s conducted, for the most part, at the CAHM Queen W. location. The first, unofficial, task is actually getting there in the morning. I’m a morning person but rarely a morning transit person. I’m so grateful for my iPod, Kindle & cell phone. Plus 1001 Queen W is the middle of a Starbucks vortex – five to ten minute walk in any direction for a Pikes.

doll dolly in the gutter

The study ‘tasks’ include pattern recognition, mazes, reciting back lists of numbers, plus tedious & sometime hypnotic computer works (guess where the red square is etc). I do pretty well on most of them but hate one that calls for me count backward by 7s starting at 119 or sorting into correct sequence a mix of numbers and letters.

For Tuesday I had to fast overnight, collect my urine in a massive container & transport that to Queen W – then blood work (so many tubes, they needed to use veins in both arms), eeg, ecg, then more pen & paper ‘tasks.’ Highlight of that day was the ecg technician remembering me from another study a few years ago in which the reading he got from my brain was so good he uses when teaching. I did not ask for royalties.

red festive body bag

Wednesday was more of the same, various on a theme as it were, in the morning. Then an MRI in the afternoon. Laying still for sometimes up two hour while that happens is draining – my shoulders & chest get so sore. Being inside the MRI machine is like being trapped under the stage at bad techno performance, whirrs, buzzes, clicks, knocks and shakes and the MRI scanners moves for back & forth to up & down. Think of being trapped in a laser pistol beep contest for up to two hours. This session was over an hour.

goggles google goggles

The research staff are friendly & eager to talk about the actual research without, of course, giving away the ‘secret’ behind some of the testing.

I wrote Bradbury at lunch on Wednesday. I escaped the vortex and hit The Swan a little from Shaw on queen. I’ve eaten in past years as a treat – excellent burger.







he held

the palm of my hand open

traced a line

with his untattooed index finger

his touch light


my fingers began to curl

as did my toes

the hair stood up on the back of neck

as if he had caressed me there


he pushed my fingers back

looked me in the eye

you have a wet life line

wet is good

you live in a world of rain

puedes verlo

he slipped into his native tongue

can you see it


his eyes held mine

they were the shadow brown

of a seaside sunset

he leaned closer

his lips brushing mine

he smelled of

a freshly sanded maple toy box

and New year’s Day

I like this wetness I witness

quieres saber más

do you want to know more


he leaned back

raised the palm of my hand

to his mouth  his lips

he bit the flesh below my thumb

then looked to me

what do you see


      I see rain

     I walk naked in its warmth

    the ground is rough

    the grass is green


yes yes he said

I want to be in you

in your wet

he folded my hand

and let rest on the table

you like your future

Le gusta su futuro


    seems to me

    you read your own future

    in the palm of my hand


he smiled wide

then showered me

with his happy laughter

doll01 another fallen dolly


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