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mental health mondays :: one thing leads to another

and sadly, that's probably the good news
i've posted here before about my sleep problems, but to recap for those of you who might not have read the
previous posts: i have them. i go through periodic bouts of insomnia, although fortunately they don't tend to last quite as long as they used to. in fact now, it's more like i have a sleepless night from time to time. the problem is that those times have been occurring with alarming frequency in the last few weeks, where there are more nights that i've managed less than four hours sleep than not.

to make things worse, last night, when i was finally able to sleep, i immediately started having some pretty intense nightmares, which resulted in my measly two hours of sleep getting frequently interrupted but also in dom's sleep being interrupted [and possibly the neighbours], since i woke up screaming several times.

this, of course, made me want to know if there was a link between mental health and our dream life and, perhaps unsurprisingly, there is. this study undertaken by a nigerian professor and researder shows that the correlation between mental illness [in this case depression or schizophrenia] and nightmares is kind of shocking. turns out that people who are already troubled are three to four times as likely to suffer from recurrent nightmares as those who are not. in addition, medications that are often taken to control the most acute effects of mental illness- like benzodiazepines- can cause nightmares when patients are inevitably forced to discontinue them.

what's worse, professor mume's study references another [found here, although only the abstract is available for the unregistered], which apparently found that those who suffer nightmares more frequently are actually more likely to show symptoms of psychosis than those who have more pleasant dreams, no matter how vivid or realistic those dreams might be. it's not clear whether nightmares are visited more on those who are crazier to begin with or if having frequent nightmares is a contributing factor to pushing vulnerable people over the edge, but either way, horrifying problems in your sleep are likely to indicate a greater chance of horrible problems when you're awake.

sweet dreams.

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making faces :: fall for all, part 2 [a seasonal colour analysis experiment]

well, installment one was the easy part: coming up with autumn looks for the autumn seasons. now we move into seasonal colour types that aren't as well-aligned with the typical autumn palette. first up, we deal with the winter seasons: dark, true and bright.

in colour analysis, each "parent" season- spring, summer, autumn, winter- overlap with each other season in one colour dimension- hue [warm/ cool], value [light/ dark] and chroma [saturated/ muted]. autumn is warm, dark and muted [relatively speaking], whereas winter is cool, dark and saturated. so you can see that the points of crossover in palettes, the places where you can emphasize autumn's attributes, is in the darker shades.

it's unsurprising that as fall transitions into winter, you get the darkest shades of all. we've seen the warmer equivalent in the dark autumn look from last time, so from there, as with all neutral seasons, we move from the warmer to the cooler cognate...


it continues... [part one]

so we're back at it with the democratic debates. last night saw cnn take their first crack at presenting ten candidates on one stage after msnbc led the charge last month. a lot of people were critical of the first debate because it seemed there were moments when moderators got such tunnel vision about keeping things moving that they stopped thinking about what was happening on stage. [the prime example being kamala harris having to insist that she be allowed to speak on the issue of racism, being the only person of colour on stage.] the other problem that many identified was that the time given to candidates wasn't even close to equal. i feel like cnn wasn't a lot better with the former, although they avoided any serious gaffes, and that they did an excellent job of fixing the latter. [that said, some of the outlying candidates might be wishing they hadn't had as much time as they did.] as with last time, i'll start off with a few general observations.

how importa…

white trash

yes, my lovelies, i have returned from the dead, at least for the time it takes me to write this post. this is not just another piece of observational drivel about how i haven't been taking care of the blog lately, although i clearly haven't. on that front, though, the principal cause of my absence has actually been due to me trying to get another, somewhat related project, off the ground. unfortunately, that project has met with some frustrating delays which means that anyone who follows this blog [perhaps there are still a few of you who haven't entirely given up] would understandably be left with the impression that i'd simply forsaken more like space to marvel at the complexity of my own belly button lint. [it's possible you had that impression even before i disappeared.]

ok, enough with that. i have a subject i wanted to discuss with you, in the sense that i will want and encourage you to respond with questions, concerns and criticism in the comments or by em…