Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Full Distraction

(Shall I tell you something wonderfully moving? In adults, there is an ability to turn the brain up, to pay full attention, as we call it, so as to absorb information with more efficiency. In little kids, the brain is at this state of alertness all the time. Even when a kid is distracted, they are intensely distracted.)

Watching Catinca think is a pleasure in itself. She’s continually thrown by all the information life fires at her, and she has to sort of momentarily retreat within herself, with an almost audible echoing patter of footsteps, to consult with her brain about how to respond, while her face is left on autopilot, prey to random muscular spasms, gravity, Brownian motion and the prevailing winds, and then she comes running back to the driver’s seat, a dossier of data clutched in her chubby hands, feet skidding on the linoleum, and her face kind of clicks on with an “Occupied” sign again and begins to say stuff. I could watch it for hours.

-David Cairns
on The Fall, and human attention

(via Russell Davies)

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