Saturday, September 22, 2012

math while angry, and new vocabulary about the brain

Every now and then I have the embarrassing experience of making a public correction on an arithmetic calculation.
I'm relieved if I catch it before someone else does.

One such event today reminds me yet again that math while angry is often flawed.

It is no surprise that hormones that could make me kick butt get in the way of a tranquil double check of conversion factors and decimal places.  But when I am angry, it usurps other forms of decision making. Duh.

Time to take deep breaths, and oxygenate not only that darling frontal cortex, but also parietal cortex and particularly the intraparietal sulcus, thought to be essential to calculation.  And hope the supramarginal gyrus isn't subvocalizing something completely irrelevant, like, @#^*&!!

Fortunately neuroscientists are looking at these matters. It is encouraging to see the many abstracts that come up in a PubMed search.

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