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How old is your brain? October 27, 2009

Posted by ourfriendben in Uncategorized, wit and wisdom.
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Our friend Ben was recently alarmed to see an article on, I suspect, MSN (I’d assumed it was on RealAge, but was unable to track it) about how you could tell how old your brain was. I was alarmed because the article said that the way to tell how old your brain is (or was it how young your brain is?!) was to see how long you could stand unsupported on one foot.

Now, our friend Ben is one of the most uncoordinated humans God ever placed on earth. The reason I never tried out for “Jeopardy” was that I realized that, no matter how much I knew, I’d never have the coordination to hit the button faster than anyone else. And now they’re telling me that the ability to stand on one leg is the determinant of brain agility? Aaaarrrgghhh!!!!!

If memory serves, you were supposed to try for 45 seconds if you were in your 30s and 30 seconds if you were 40 or over. Of course, despite attempting to ignore the article, eventually our friend Ben succumbed to the challenge. I calculate from this attempt that my brain is roughly 3,500 years old, making me an archaeological treasure if nothing else.

Our friend Ben did have a takeaway from this: If this really is the determinant of brainpower, it’s certainly the best endorsement I’ve ever seen for yoga. As I understand it, yogi adepts could stand on one leg for their entire lives if they chose to do so.

More power to them! Myself, I think I have to go lie down on the sofa now. And Albert, we need to talk. The only thing I’ve ever read about your legs was that you couldn’t manage to wear two matching socks to save your life, not that you stood or hopped around on one leg to prove your brain’s agility. But maybe you were too busy thinking about relativity or the meaning of life or the origin of the universe or something. I’m counting on you to let me know. And while you’re at it, could you put in a good word for poor Pluto? Like my brainpower, it’s recently been officially downsized…