06 October 2011

Are Half the People You Know Actually Zombie Brain Mutants?

About 50 percent of people are born with a prominent fold in the brain matter that lies just behind the forehead, explained study co-author author Jon Simons, a researcher at the University of Cambridge in the UK. Simons and his colleagues found that these are the people who seem [to] record very accurate versions of what has happened to and around them.

In contrast, people with a less pronounced fold, or a non-existent one, seem to have problems distinguishing between what they actually experienced and what they might have imagined or heard about, Simons said. _msnbc
Right. Half the people you know may not have that critical part of the brain that would help them to remember what is going on around them from moment to moment. We call them zombies, but we must pretend that they are as human as we are. And just what is this prominent fold in the brain called?
A fold in the front brain called the paracingulate sulcus, or PCS, can apparently help people more accurately remember whether something was imagined or really happened, or which person actually said something. It's one of the final structural folds to develop before birth, and its size varies greatly in the general population, according to researchers at the University of Cambridge. People with the fold were significantly better at memory tasks than people without the fold, the researchers say. The study which was published in the Journal of Neuroscience, involved 53 healthy adult volunteers with no reported history of cognitive difficulties, according to a Cambridge news release. And everyone thought they had a good memory before the tests. _PopSci

And what are we to do with these "people?" You know who they are. They are constantly telling you that you did or said something that you know darned well that you never said or did. These zombies can make your life intolerable, and yet, what can you do?

The law protects these creatures the same way it protects us genuine humans. Unfortunately, you cannot have them put to sleep, like a rabid dog. And yet in many ways, these zombies are more dangerous than rabid animals who snarl and slobber rabies-laden foam from half a room away.

Al Fin zombie control officers suspect that the actual proportion of these zombies worldwide is far more than 50%. Perhaps as high as 80% or 90%. And everywhere you go, there they are. There is just no escaping them.

But as long as they are not an immediate threat to your life or property, you should have time to deal with them: First of all, pretend that you do not know that they are zombies. Chances are, they do not know it themselves, so this should not be hard. Second, if you have a joint bank account or business partnership of any kind with one, close and dissolve it immediately. You cannot afford to trust a zombie with your future well-being. Third, you will want to travel around, to find a community that is relatively free of zombies. If you do not do this, you will never truly be safe from them.

To aid your search for a zombie-free community, Al Fin Zombie Control has developed a special pair of sunglasses which allows you to identify zombies on sight. No, they do not look any different through the glasses, but you will feel a tingle going up your leg every time you see one of them -- as long as you are wearing the glasses. It never fails, although sometimes instead of a tingle it is a sharp pain like a 6 inch rusty nail tearing through the sensitive tissues of your thigh. Whatever. At least you know one way or another.

Of course, the possibility exists that you are actually a zombie yourself and do not know it. Zombies can read, after all. They simply cannot remember what they have read accurately. Here is the recommendation of Al Fin Zombie Control: Do not jump off a tall building or a high bridge. Do not set yourself on fire or pull the trigger on a loaded shotgun that is pointed toward your head. If you can remember these recommendations accurately, you should be alright. If you confuse the instructions, you are probably a zombie anyway, so it will be no loss.

Be careful out there. Zombies are particularly abundant in journalism, politics, government, and academia. And always remember: If you discover a zombie that is a particular threat to human society, do not call the police or take action yourself. Instead, call Al Fin Zombie Control. That way, there can be no doubt that the appropriate action will be taken.

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Blogger neil craig said...

Wonmder if this has any effect on skull shape in which case it might be possible to determine if it is a recent mutation, like being Jewish or drinking milk or if it is very old and therefore not that much of an evolutionary bonus.

Friday, 07 October, 2011  
Blogger al fin said...

Probably not. We had to wait for functional brain imaging to tease this puzzling knot apart.

But here is a pdf study looking at morphologic variability in both cingulate (CS) and paracingulate sulci (PCS):


You may find some interesting background info there.

The relationship of the anatomy of the PCS with schizophrenia as well as sex differences in PCS morphology, are a bit intriguing.

This is likely the beginning of a new level of understanding of brain differences based on cortical folding patterns.

Friday, 07 October, 2011  

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“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act” _George Orwell

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