IconDoIt’s Commercial Break

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Just a quickie post tonight that’s an unabashed plug for some new items I’ve posted at my online store as well as a 15% off sale on all mugs ordered now through this Saturday (August 28, 2010). To take advantage of the sale, be sure to include this discount code with your order: BTSRULE5MUG

MUGS – Just a few of the styles available.

Montmartre (mug) mug
Montmartre (mug) by IconDoIt at zazzle.com
Freedom (mug) mug
Freedom (mug) by IconDoIt at zazzle.com
Too Loose (mug) mug
Too Loose (mug) by IconDoIt at zazzle.com

BUTTONS or PINS – Just a few of the styles available.

Sun-Dance (pin) button
Sun-Dance (pin) by IconDoIt at zazzle.com
Maggie (pin) button
Maggie (pin) by IconDoIt at zazzle.com

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What The Dormouse Said (The Art of Epilepsy)

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Recent events in my own life reminded me of a blog post titled, “What About Lewis Carroll” by Sadi Ranson-Polizzotti, that I’d found a few years ago concerning the role temporal lobe epilepsy played in the delightful imagination of The Rev. Charles Dodgson (author of such beloved classics as “Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland” that was published in 1865 under his more familiar nom de plume, Lewis Carroll). Finding out I had something in common with one of my literary heroes, Temporal Lobe Epilepsy (also referred to as ‘Complex Partial Seizures’ or ‘Psychomotor Epilepsy’), peaked my interest in finding out more about Dodgson personally and also about other famous authors, artists, and composers who have lived with this diagnosis, and whether medical science has been able to find a cause-and-effect between TLE and the vivid imaginations, mystical experiences, and profuse output of creative works of such persons. While I have not come across a research study that definitively proves or disproves a biological etiology for such traits, I did find an enormous interest among experts in the field of cognitive neuroscience and a plethora of research that appears well on the way to not only proving such a connection but also being able to map it out in the brain.

Is that cool, or what?

In any case, if you’re either a fan of Lewis Carroll, have an interest in Temporal Lobe Epilepsy in general or in learning more about the recent discoveries in Cognitive Neuroscience identifying the exact location(s) in the brain and the environmental and biological triggers that produce highly attenuated senses (visual, auditory, taste, smell and/or touch), out-of-body feelings, paranormal experiences, hyper-religiosity, déjà vu (a feeling of familiarity), jamais vu (a feeling of unfamiliarity), hypergraphia, altered states of consciousness such as euphoria and samadhi, and more, I’ve put together a selection of links that I think you’ll enjoy. At the top of the list you’ll find links to Sadi Ranson-Polizzotti’s blog where she has a number of scholarly articles about Lewis Carroll and Temporal Lobe Epilepsy. I recommend these as a good place to start.

Suitably apropos, this morning’s serving of artwork is built around my interpretation of one of Lewis Carroll’s hand-sketched illustrations that was included in the 1865 first publication of “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”. (Special Note: While the images linked below are low-resolution (72 ppi), I’ll be sending off to the printer’s the 600 ppi original file later this week and making the image available through my Zazzle store in poster-size as well as a Greeting Card.)

Enjoy!

Free Clip-Art / Icons of the Day

The following images are either full or reduced size previews. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the preview to save the image(s) of your choice to your desktop. (Unless otherwise noted, downloads are 512px X 512px in .png format). As always, usage of any of the images offered on this blog are free for your personal use while subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives – Share Alike- 3.0 license. (See sidebar for details)

Alice 600

Alice, Not Feeling Quite Herself (600 x 720px)

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I Am The Woman I Designed

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Back in 1974 when I was 20 years old, feeling confident and comfortable in my own skin, I found myself at odds with most of my female friends and most especially with my older sister and mother, who were all becoming strident feminists. As an overtly independent person from the day I was born (or free spirit as I’ve often been characterized), the women around me saw my anti-feminist attitude as antithetical to the way I lived my life up to then. Rather than having a rational conversation about the basis for our difference in opinion about the NOW (National Organization of Women) movement, these women jumped to the conclusion that I had sold out or been brainwashed by the guy I was so gaga about at that time. Nothing could have been farther from the truth but the attitude that I was a traitor to my own sex was so incredibly absurd to me (particularly in light of my chosen career) I never took their anger seriously. My friends and my mother eventually “got it” when they finally realized that while they were busy going to conventions, participating in protest marches, and getting riled up about the inequities of life and neanderthal men, I was busy pursuing and succeeding in careers that had traditionally been for men only. But to this day, I know that one of those women still holds a grudge against me for the perceived disloyalty. I just don’t get it.

More than anything else, I value freedom. I firmly believe that that ALL people have the God-given right to be free, in their thoughts and in their choices, limited only by one rule: that the exercise of their freedom does not infringe on the freedom of anyone else.

Now, because of our right to think as we choose, it is inevitable that we won’t agree with everyone else and as far as I’m concerned, that’s not only okay, it’s how we learn and grow and it’s what makes life interesting. The problem I saw (and still see) with NOW (and with any other radical organizations) is that their agenda is not to ensure the freedom of women to think for themselves and choose how they want to live their lives, but they want to force (by legislation or intimidation) everyone to think as the leaders of the organization(s) think. Besides the fact that you cannot legislate thought or morality, the very concept of there being only one “right way” to think or live, is abhorrent to me.

When I decided to be an Audio Engineer and Producer back in 1972, I knew of only one other woman in all of Northeast Ohio who was active in that field. Yet, I never felt artificially barred, limited or discriminated against in any way due to being a woman, and in fact was well on the road in a promising career in radio and advertising until I got stopped in my tracks as a result of a stroke that left me almost completely deaf at age 27. Twenty years later, when I decided to accept a job as a construction field superintendent, only a handful of women held that position in the Greater Cleveland area, and while it took 2 or 3 days at the beginning for the guys to feel comfortable having a female “boss”, soon we were able to develop respect for each others’ skills and knowledge and became a very effective team. The key to the success I found in traditionally male-dominated careers was that I never asked for, nor allowed, anyone to give me any special consideration simply because of my gender and because I harbored no anger or resentment towards my fellow workers simply because of their gender, we were able to have a relaxed atmosphere to work in, joking with each other without fear of it being taken the wrong way, allowing each of us to simply be ourselves and rise or fall based upon our own individual talents and efforts.

While there are certainly greater opportunities for women and for minorities than existed 40 years ago, this advancement has been hard earned by millions of citizens, one individual at a time, in spite of organization’s like NOW and not because of them. The only visible legacy of these kamikaze “What About Me?” armies is an overly sensitive nation obsessed with appearing to be politically correct while seething with an under-current of anger, fear and distrust permeating the public lives of its’ citizens; a President and congressional majority which advocate that the US should turn a blind eye to terrorism and fascism (as long as it is “over there”) and which is feverishly ramping up to control nearly every aspect of our lives; and a country that looks down on gay couples wanting to marry and wanting to adopt children while the majority of heterosexual adults are either divorced or never married yet continue to have children that they have no time or interest in raising. In my humble opinion, the NOW revolution was ill-conceived from day one but false pride has blinded those who rallied behind it, looking to lay blame and to get something for nothing rather than standing on their own two feet, marching to their own drum, and win or lose, facing their own music.

What a waste.

Free Clip-Art / Icons of the Day

The following images are either full or reduced size previews. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the preview to save the image(s) of your choice to your desktop. (Unless otherwise noted, downloads are 512px X 512px in .png format). As always, usage of any of the images offered on this blog are free for your personal use while subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives – Share Alike- 3.0 license. (See sidebar for details)

I am the Woman

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